Health System & Research Ethics


Vicki is a senior social science and public health researcher in the Kenya Medical Research Institute (KEMRI)-Wellcome Trust Research Programme in Kenya, based in the Department for Public Health Research. She is also a University Research Lecturer in the Centre for Tropical Medicine and Global Health in the Nuffield Department of Medicine, and Research Associate at the Ethox Centre (Centre for Ethics), Nuffield Department of Population Health, Oxford University. Trained in Medicine and General Practice in the UK, she has worked in Kenya since 1990. She was a paediatric medical officer in Kilifi District General Hospital between 1990 and 1994, and worked extensively on malaria home management in Kenya between 1995 and 2005, including piloting, developing and evaluating a role for private medicine retailers within the Kenya National Malaria Control Strategy. Prior to this, between 1982 and 1985, she worked at the UK MRC laboratories in The Gambia. Vicki is an active member of Programme committees that supports strategic planning around ethical issues that emerge during research across the Programme. She contributes to social science and research ethics training at the Centre for early-to-mid career scientists, front-line staff and community representatives.

Current Work

Vicki’s current research and operational interests concern understanding, and strengthening policy around, social and ethical aspects of international collaborative health research conducted in low-income settings. Specific areas of focus include community engagement, informed consent, benefit sharing, provider-patient communication, ancillary care responsibilities and data sharing. Her work is particularly influenced by an interest in drawing on empirical approaches to normative analysis; her doctoral thesis was based on addressing social and ethical issues in sharing research-generated genetic findings using community consultation methods.


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Project Research

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Layered vulnerability and researchers' responsibilities: learning from research involving Kenyan adolescents living with perinatal HIV infection.
Kimani, M., Molyneux, S., Charo, A., Zakayo, S. M., Sanga, G., Njeru, R., Davies, A., Kelley, M., Abubakar, A., Marsh, V.
BMC Med Ethics, (2024). 25:21

Anti-merozoite antibodies induce natural killer cell effector function and are associated with immunity against malaria.
Odera, D. O., Tuju, J., Mwai, K., Nkumama, I. N., Fürle, K., Chege, T., Kimathi, R., Diehl, S., Musasia, F. K., Rosenkranz, M., Njuguna, P., Hamaluba, M., Kapulu, M. C., Frank, R., Osier, F. H. A., Abdi, A. I., Chi, P. C., de Laurent, Z., Jao, I., Kamuya, D., Kamuyu, G., Makale, J., Murungi, L., Musyoki, J., Muthui, M., Mwacharo, J., Kariuki, S., Mwanga, D., Mwongeli, J., Ndungu, F., Njue, M., Nyangweso, G., Kimani, D., Ngoi, J. M., Musembi, J., Ngoto, O., Otieno, E., Ooko, M., Shangala, J., Wambua, J., Mohammed, K. S., Omuoyo, D., Mosobo, M., Kibinge, N., Kinyanjui, S., Bejon, P., Lowe, B., Marsh, K., Marsh, V., Abebe, Y., Billingsley, P. F., Sim, B. K. L., Hoffman, S. L., James, E. R., Richie, T. L., Audi, A., Olewe, F., Oloo, J., Ongecha, J., Ongas, M. O., Koskei, N., Bull, P. C., Hodgson, S. H., Kivisi, C., Imwong, M., Murphy, S. C., Ogutu, B., Tarning, J., Winterberg, M., Williams, T. N.
Sci Transl Med, (2023). 15:eabn5993

A network of empirical ethics teams embedded in research programmes across multiple sites: opportunities and challenges in contributing to COVID-19 research and responses.
Ngwenya, N., Ilo Van Nuil, J., Nyirenda, D., Chambers, M., Cheah, P. Y., Seeley, J., Chi, P., Mafuleka, L., Nkosi, B., Kamuya, D., Davies, A., Schneiders, M. L., Mumba, N., Dlamini, S., Desmond, N., Marsh, V., Rippon, D., Parker, M., Molyneux, S.
Wellcome Open Res, (2022). 7:48

Ethical considerations around volunteer payments in a malaria human infection study in Kenya: an embedded empirical ethics study.
Chi, P. C., Owino, E. A., Jao, I., Bejon, P., Kapulu, M., Marsh, V., Kamuya, D.
BMC Med Ethics, (2022). 23:46

Undertaking Community Engagement for a Controlled Human Malaria Infection Study in Kenya: Approaches and Lessons Learnt.
Mumba, N., Njuguna, P., Chi, P., Marsh, V., Awuor, E., Hamaluba, M., Mauncho, C., Mwalukore, S., Masha, J., Mwangoma, M., Kalama, B., Alphan, H., Wambua, J., Bejon, P., Kamuya, D., Kapulu, M. C.
Front Public Health, (2022). 10:793913