Dr Beverley Townsend

Email: bev@greymatter.co.za 
University: York University


Dr. Bev Townsend is a Postdoctoral Researcher at the York Law School at the University of York, UK. She holds the following degrees: BA LLB LLM PGDip LLM (cum laude) PhD (UCT). Her expertise is in data protection and in integrating the law and ethics into safe and resilient autonomous systems (robots). Her research has focused on digital health, privacy, data protection law, data sharing and international data transfers, ethics, human rights, biotechnologies, AI, and regulation and governance. She is an honorary research fellow at UKZN.

Academic Qualifications

  • BA (UNISA)
  • LLM (Banking, Commercial, Insurance Law, Human Rights) (UNISA)
  • P.Grad Dip (Tax) (UCT)
  • LLM (Biotechnology and Intellectual Property Law) (cum laude) (UCT)
  • PhD (UCT)

Professional Qualifications

  • Admitted as an Advocate of the High Court in 2000.

Research Interests

  • Health Law
  • Digital Health/eHealth
  • Informational Privacy and Data Protection
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Human Rights
  • Ethics


  • B Townsend, M Mars, R Scott. (2019). The Development of Ethical Guidelines for Telemedicine in South Africa. South African Journal of Bioethics and Law.
  • D Thaldar, B Townsend, M Botes, and B Shozi. Human Biological Material. LAWSA. In press.
  • B Townsend & D Thaldar. (2020). Informed Consent and Medical malpractice suits: Beukes v Smith. South African Law Journal.
  • B Townsend & D Thaldar. (2019). Navigating uncharted waters: biobanks and informational privacy in South Africa. South African Journal of Human Rights DOI:10.1080/02587203.2020.1717366.
  • D Thaldar & B Townsend. (2020). Genomic research and privacy: A response to Staunton et al. South African Medical Journal 110 DOI:10.7196/SAMJ.2020.v110i3.14431.
  • D Thaldar, M Botes, B Shozi, B Townsend & J Kinderlerer. Human germline editing: Legal-ethical guidelines for South Africa. South African Journal of Science. In press.
  • B Townsend, M Mars, R Scott. (2020). The HPCSA’s telemedicine guidance during COVID-19: A review. South African Journal of Bioethics and Law.
  • B Townsend. (2020). Software as Medical Devices (SaMDs): Critical rights issues regarding Artificial Intelligence software-based health technologies in South Africa. Journal of South African Law / Tydskrif vir Suid-Afrikaanse Reg. In press.