I work both as an academic as well as in an advisory capacity at various levels. As a trained lawyer, my work advising clients has a particular potential to give rise to the appearance of conflicts of interest. In the interests of transparency, I give details of my funding sources and commitments on this page and will try to keep these as up-to-date as possible. If you have any queries in relation to this, I encourage you to get in touch.
I am a tenured university professor at the University of Hannover and I draw a full salary from the university. As part of my appointment, I am free to use up to 20% of my working time for other paid engagements. I am required to notify the university of such other engagements. I do not use university resources for these other engagements.
Additional commercially relevant activities
I am the managing director of a university spin-off called consentris, which is still in a developmental phase. I draw no salary from this work but this may change in the future. I am also an associate member of Coram Chambers in London. Coram is a collective of self-employed barristers, and I am affiliated with Chambers and with colleagues there, but am not paid for this engagement. I am also a consultant lawyer with Hill Dickinson LLP (HD, also in London). Some of my work with HD is pro bono but most is not and I am paid on an hourly basis as a freelancer. My professional and contractual obligations at HD mean that I am not free to reveal who my clients are (unless the clients expressly agree to this). This is not ideal in the context of creating maximum transparency around my professional relationships. It is also not unusual for a lawyer. I pay particular attention to the potential for conflicts of interest in this setting and I am selective about my clients. If in doubt, I err on the side of caution. I accept that this is an unavoidable blind spot in my line of work. In addition to my work at HD, I am also a registered legal services provider in Germany and I occasionally advise clients from the private and the public sector on issues involving ethics and law in sciences.
In this section, I am going to outline my advisory roles in the last five years, and will give details in relation to the funding provided for these roles. I was, until 2019, a member of the UK Biobank Ethics and Governance Council where I advised the project on behalf of the Wellcome Trust. This role was unremunerated, but my travel expenses, accommodation and disbursements were paid. I am also a member of the European Society of Cardiology’s Ethics and Oversight Committee. The ESC also pays my disbursements for this role but does not pay me for my advice. I am a member of the German Federal Government’s Pharmadialog (and advisory body on innovative health technologies) and I receive no remuneration for that role. I have also advised various publicly funded research projects, as well as some that were public private partnerships. I have not been paid for these roles, save for small honoraria I have received for collating and drafting extensive ethics reports.
Research funding income
I have obtained research funding from the following sources: BMBF, MWK, NIH, DFG, EU, IMI. These projects were all carried out at the University of Hannover and all funding was paid to the university directly. I have not received any personal financial benefits from these projects, indeed I normally contribute my work for free.