Science, Technology and Medicine in Society (STeMiS)

A research group based in Sociological Studies

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A number of iHuman sociologists are also members of STeMiS (Sociological Studies, University of Sheffield). Science, technology and medicine are pervasive parts of contemporary society. The STeMiS theme is interested in how knowledge is made, how technologies are developed, how these come to be employed in different settings and with what implications for social relations.

Our academic staff members working in this area are a vibrant and diverse group of researchers drawing on a number of sociological perspectives, but all share a common interest in the relationship between society and science, technology and/or medicine. Much of our work is inter-disciplinary and we have links with colleagues and networks across all faculties at the University of Sheffield.

Some examples of questions we are currently grappling with:

How can data visualisations make data more accessible to ordinary citizens? What are the implications of new knowledge about the human body and brain and new technologies with the potential to change these for understanding what it means to be human? What does self-monitoring mean for the people who undertake it and what are the implications of self-monitoring practices for the wider provision of healthcare? How do ideas of race circulate in various biomedical contexts?

For more information on our work in STeMiS, please contact Dr Ros Williams: or Dr Greg Hollin: We have an active mailing list, so please contact us if you’d like to be added.

Our major research areas include:

Digital societies Sociology of Health and Illness Science and Technology Studies New materialisms and posthumanism 
  • How are visual technologies such as MRI changing medical practice and parents' experience of foetal and neonatal post-mortem?
  • To what extent might digital media enhance bottom-up, patient-centred health practices?
  • What assumptions about the good life, death and suffering underpin statutory measures of 'quality of life'?
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Our work

How we understand being ‘human’ differs between disciplines and has changed radically over time. We are living in an age marked by rapid growth in knowledge about the human body and brain, and new technologies with the potential to change them.

Centres of excellence

The University's cross-faculty research centres harness our interdisciplinary expertise to solve the world's most pressing challenges.