Medical innovation and clinical adoption: the case of regenerative medicine

When:10 Mar 2017, 12pm - 2pm
Venue:Morven Brown 209 (map ref C20)
Who:Prof. Andrew Webster, Director, Science and Technology Studies Unit, Department of Sociology, University of York
Andrew Webster

Environmental Humanities @UNSW


This paper reports on recent STS and medical sociology research in the UK on the ways in which the emerging field of regenerative medicine has depended on various forms of government and related organisational support to foster its development. This is shown to reflect specific socio-technical characteristics of the field. I ask then how we can understand the ways in which this relates to the actual social and cultural factors that shape the clinical adoption process. The paper concludes with some wider implications for both social science and policy. Work related to this has recently been published in Social Science and Medicine. See the open access paper at:

About Andrew Webster

Andrew Webster is Director of the Science and Technology Studies Unit (SATSU) located in the Department of Sociology at the University of York, UK. He was Head of the Department of Sociology at York between 2004-9 and then Dean of Social Sciences and member of the University’s Senior Management Group until 2013.He has directed national research programmes for the ESRC and MRC in the fields of emerging health technologies and stem cells, and held major grants from UK research councils and the European Commission. He was elected Fellow of the Academy of Social Science in 2007.

He serves on a number of editorial and scientific advisory boards as well as national policy committees including the UK Stem Cell Bank Steering Committee, the Regenerative Medicine Expert Group Sub-committee, and the Scientific Advisory Committee, Pharmacy Research UK, as well as member of various UK and international academic bodies including, the BSA, EASST, and the Dutch WTMC’s International Scientific Board. His current research focuses on regenerative medicine and the processes that shape its adoption in the clinic, and a new grant is to start in April 2017 on gene-editing, IPS cells and 3D tissue printing. He has collaborated with Professor Catherine Waldby (ANU) for a number of years, currently in relation to the ARC project on ‘Regulating Autologous Stem Cell Therapies in Australia’

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