Robert Winston

Professor Lord Robert Winston's research led to the development of gynaecological microsurgery in the 1970s and various improvements in reproductive medicine, subsequently adopted internationally, particularly in the field of endocrinology and IVF.  His work on pre-implantation genetic diagnosis enabled families carrying gene defects to have children free of fatal illnesses. This included techniques to help families with sex-linked disorders, single gene defects (such as cystic fibrosis) and chromosomal abnormalities – for example, those causing pregnancy loss. He has held twenty-six patents.

Robert Winston’s appointment as the first Professor of Science and Society at Imperial College London, a university with one of the strongest international science bases, will focus on the crucial importance of improving communication and public engagement with science.  Concentrating on advancing the understanding and interaction between scientists and the public through a range of initiatives that will include conducting research into the most effective methods of science engagement and evaluating its impact, he will be using his experience and contacts to co-ordinate and build on existing outreach activity, establishing a dedicated schools laboratory and seminar facility based at the College to give pupils and teachers experience of hands-on science in areas such as DNA analysis and robotics.  The Reach Out Lab opened in August 2009 offering exciting practical science to schoolchildren and the opportunity to carry out research programmes into best practice for engaging pupils, students, teachers and the public in general, with science.  He is a member of the Scottish Science Advisory Council and the Scottish Science Education Council.

Robert Winston has been a visiting professor at a number of American, Australian and European universities and was President of the British Association for the Advancement of Science in 2005.
Robert's awards include a Wellcome Senior Research Fellowship 1973-77, a Blair-Bell Lectureship RCOG, 1978, the Cedric Carter Medal, Clinical Genetics Society, 1993 and the Victor Bonney Medal for contributions to surgery, Royal College of Surgeons of London, 1993. Robert Winston was Gold Medallist for the Royal Society of Health in 1998. In 1999 he was awarded the Faraday Medal by The Royal Society and the BMA Gold Award for Medicine in the Media. Robert won the Edwin Stevens Medal (the Royal Society of Medicine) in 2003, was the North of England Zoological Society’s gold medallist in 2004 and won the Al Hammadi Gold Medal at the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh, 2005.  Robert Winston is a Fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences, an Honorary Fellow of Queen Mary College, and holds honorary Fellowships of the Royal Academy of Engineering, Institute of Biology, the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow. Robert has been awarded honorary doctorates at nineteen universities.

Robert Winston’s activities in the House of Lords include speaking regularly on education, science, medicine and the arts. Robert was Chairman of the Lords Select Committee on Science and Technology 1999-2002, initiating enquiries into Antibiotic Resistance, Non-Food Crops, Nuclear Waste, Science and Society, Genetic Databases, Aircraft Passenger Environment, and Science in Schools. Robert is a board member and Vice-chairman of the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology.

Robert Winston is committed to scientific education and regularly writes or hosts popular science programmes for the BBC’s main channel and Discovery networks. Robert's series include “SuperDoctors”, “A Child Against the Odds”,“Your Life in Their Hands” (five series), “Making Babies, “The Human Body” (three BAFTAs, Emmy nomination and a Peabody award), “Secret Life of Twins” (BMA Gold Medal for best film), “The Superhuman” (Emmy Nomination and Wellcome Award for Medicine and Biology, 2000), “The Threads of Life” (Paris Annual Science Film Prize, 2003), “Child of our Time”, “Human Instinct” (Golden Panda Award, Shanghai, 2004 and Emmy nomination), “Walking with Cavemen”, “Human Mind”, “The Story of God”, and “A Child Against All Odds”. “How to Sleep Better” won an award for the use of interactive TV, 2005. Robert won the VLV award for the best individual contribution to British television in 2003 and "Superdoctors" (2008) received a nomination for the Grierson Award.

Robert Winston has published thirteen books for lay readership:- “What Makes Me Me” won the Aventis Prize in 2005, and “The Human Mind” was short-listed for the same prize in that year. “Human” won the BMA First Prize for the Best Popular Medicine Book in 2005.   “It’s Elementary” was shortlisted for the Aventis prize in 2008 and "The Evolution Revolution" published in February 2009 followed in February 2010 by "Bad Ideas?" Robert regularly gives seminars in schools and universities

Robert's interests include theatre (National Directors’ Award, Edinburgh Festival 1969), matters of Jewish interest, classical music, skiing and the wines of Bordeaux, especially Paulliac. Robert is on the Board of the Lyric Theatre and has been involved with a number of UK charities, including founding The Institute of Obstetrics and Gynaecology Trust and the “Women for Women” Appeal, Cancer Research UK, the Stem Cell Foundation, and the Association of Medical Research Charities.  Robert is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, and a member of The Athenaeum and The Garrick Clubs and the MCC.


For further information on Professor Lord Robert Winston or for Robert Winstons's availability please call the Speakers Unlimited team on 01792 536120 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it