Course overview



We are now almost two decades in the genomic era, and we have reached a point where knowledge on the power of genetic information, its uses, and associated legal and ethical implications, is important for all people.

I found the course to be course to be an incredibly thorough introduction to a novel concept and emerging topic. The course content was delivered in a challenging and appropriate way in consideration of the complexity in question. The engaging nature of the sessions was the most useful in reinforcing learning.

Fatos was an exquisite course leader & I would highly recommend his teaching

A real need for this knowledge

We can already extract detailed information on traits (e.g. health, personality) from individuals’ genetics data. Genomic sequencing is becoming routine. Genetic data breaches are common and unavoidable. Anonymisation does not protect privacy. Genetic data are valuable for more than one generation and therefore can be used to harm or benefit a person throughout their life and beyond. Potential misuses of genetics data / information are numerous.

To protect from misuses and benefit from advancements, as well as to promote legislative and policy updates - learning about these issues is now essential for individuals and organisations. Essential knowledge includes, that on the amount of information we can extract from genomic data; how to prepare for the genomic era; the legal protection in place; ethical implications; and what individuals and societies can do to protect from misuses; and how to improve chances of benefiting from genetic science.

You will learn about

  • The extent of information we can draw from an individual's genetics data
  • The global genomic research platforms and data sharing - implications for discrimination.
  • How can information extracted from genetic data be used to discriminate; and areas of potential discrimination.
  • Merging of genetic data with big data /person data and medical data - implications
  • Potential discrimination risks for individuals and groups (e.g. race, ethnic etc.)
  • Laws regulation genetics data processing (e.g. UK Data Protection Act, General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), Genetic Information Non-discrimination Act (USA)
  • Laws regulating genetic discrimination (e.g. Discrimination laws UK; General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), Genetic Information Non-discrimination Act (USA), Genetic non-discrimination Act (Canada)).
  • Commercialisation of genetic research and discrimination on access to benefits
  • Impact of inequality (beyond poverty) on peoples' genes (heritability) - from the authors of Genes and Gini: what inequality means for heritability.

The course is a combination of law, genetics science and ethics. 

It is designed to equip those taking the course with knowledge on:

  • Minimising genetic discrimination, including through knowing about the origin of risks, legal protection in place, and steps that can be taken (e.g. by individuals, research institutions, police administration, education administration and lawyers)
  • Protecting from potential discrimination
  • Promoting positive use of genomic science
  • Promoting Ethical and legal use of genomic findings, data, and information.


This course is directed by Fatos Selita, a Barrister and a New York State Attorney, with expertise on legal and ethical matters of genetics / genomics, including directing a module on Genomic Law and Ethics, and co-ordinating two Working Groups on Legal, Ethical and Societal Implications of Genetic Findings (LESIG), both in the UK and the Russian Federation. Read more

All AIR courses & About AIR


The running of this course is subsidised by The Accessible Genetics Consortium (TAGC).



Booking information

Disability Support

We are committed to providing reasonable teaching adjustments for students with disabilities that may impact on their learning experience. Please be advised that in order to provide an assessment and plan appropriate support we require as much notice as possible and, in some circumstances, up to 3 months. If you are planning to book, or have already booked, onto a short course please contact Goldsmiths Disability Team ( at your earliest convenience.


  • 10% when a participant enrolls for more than one of our courses (at the same time)
  • 20% UK students
  • 25%Members of the UK Law and Society Association (UKLSA) 
  • If five people register from the same institution for the same intake, the fifth place is free
  • Goldsmiths students, staff and alumni - email us for current discounts

As a University, we are able to offer our courses at minimum prices, and free of VAT - to make knowledge available to as wide audience as possible.

Refund policy: See AIR main page


If you have any questions about this course please contact air ( or call +44 (0)20 7078 5468.

For information on our upcoming short courses please sign up to our mailing list.


Goldsmiths, University of London, New Cross

Senate House, Bloomsbury, London 

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