Paula Martinho da Silva was born in Santarém and lives in Lisbon.
After receiving her degree in Law from the Law Faculty of Lisbon’s Classica University in 1982, Paula Martinho da Silva has been a practicing lawyer since 1984.
Paula Martinho da Silva concluded her Master’s in Bioethics from the Medicine Faculty of Complutense university, Madrid, in 1994. She is a Senior Researcher at the Bioethics Institute of the Portuguese Catholic University.
Paula Martinho da Silva was a member (1991-2003) and subsequently presidente (2003-2009) of the National Board of Ethics for Life Sciences, and member (1998-2000; 2005-2010; 2011-2016) and vice-president (2005-2010) of the European Commission’s European Group on Ethics in Science and New Technologies. She was presidente of the José de Mello Saúde Ethics Committee and member of ORBEA (an animal welfare committee) at the Science Faculty of Lisbon University. She was also a member of the COMETH Bureau (European Conference of National Ethics Committees, European Council, 2003-2010).
Paula Martinho da Silva is currently a member of the UNESCO International Bioethics Committee (IBC), the Champalimaud Foundation’s Ethics Committee, the Hospital Centre of Central Lisbon, and Nova University, Lisbon. She is also a member of the João Lobo Antunes Institute of Molecular Medicine’s Societal Board, and the International Society of Bioethics’ Scientific Committee.
Paula Martinho da Silva has authored or co-authored various books: author of ‘A Procriação Artificial – Aspectos Jurídicos’ (‘Artificial Procreation – Juridic Aspects’ - A collection of Law books, Moraes Editors, 1986); annotator of ‘Convenção dos Direitos do Homem e a Biomedicina’ (‘The Convention on Human Rights and Biomedicine’ - Cosmos, 1997); co-author of ‘Lei da Procriação Medicamente Assistida Anotada’ (‘Law of Medically Assisted Procreation, Annotated’ - Coimbra Editora, 2011) and of several bioethics articles.
In 2003, Paula Martinho da Silva received the French distinction of ‘Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur’ (‘Kinight of the Legion of Honour’).