Dr Kate Weiner
BSc, MA, PhD
Department of Sociological Studies
Senior Lecturer in Sociology
Post-graduate Research Admissions Tutor
Research theme lead for Science Technology and Medicine in Society
+44 114 222 6491
Full contact details
Department of Sociological Studies
Kate joined the department as a faculty research fellow in September 2012 and became a lecturer in September 2015.
Before this, she completed her PhD and two personal fellowships at the University of Nottingham and then worked as an advisor on the NIHR-funded Research Design Service at the University of Manchester.
Kate works at the intersection of medical sociology and science and technology studies. She is interested in the construction of biomedical knowledge and the interplay between lay and professional knowledge, user-technology relations with everyday health practices and their implications for health care.
Kate has undertaken research in the areas of genetics, heart disease and patient’s organisations. Recent research has focused on the everyday accounts of and practices with pharmaceuticals, foods and self-monitoring.
- Research interests
Kate's doctoral research, completed in 2006, looked at lay and professional constructions of familial hypercholesterolaemia (FH), a treatable hereditary condition associated with heart disease.
Her analysis focussed on the themes of geneticisation, genetic responsibility and biosociality, three prominent concepts in discussions of the social implications of genetic knowledge.
Subsequent research projects looked at more mundane health technologies for cholesterol management. A two-year project funded by a Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowship focused on cholesterol-lowering foods containing plant sterols.
A parallel project undertaken in collaboration with Catherine Will at the University of Sussex, and funded by an ESRC small grant, looked at prescription and over-the-counter statins.
Kate's current research is expanding this work on consumer health technologies, looking at self-monitoring technologies such as blood pressure monitors and weighing scales/BMI monitors.
All of these studies consider professional expectations as well as people’s accounts of why and how they adopt and use, or don't use, particular products or technologies. They consider the way responsibilities for health are distributed, the practices involved and the implications for forms of expertise in relation to health care.
The work critically engages with notions of 'self-care' and 'health behaviours', proposing alternative lenses such as care infrastructures and practice theory approaches.
Kate continues to be interested in developments in the biomedical sciences.
She recently completed research on the routine practices of racialised prescribing, in collaboration with Andrew Smart at Bath Spa University and contributed to an interdisciplinary network of researchers interested in epigenetics, led by Vincent Cunliffe in Biomedical Science at University of Sheffield.
- everyday health practices
- mundane health technologies
- self-monitoring, self-care
- social implications of biomedical developments eg genomics, epigenetics
- social categories in the clinic
- qualitative research methods.
- Everyday curation? Attending to data, records and record keeping in the practices of self-monitoring.. Big Data and Society, 7(1). View this article in WRRO
- Young people’s perspectives of e-cigarette use in the home. Health and Place, 57, 157-164. View this article in WRRO
- Constituting practices, shaping markets: remaking healthy living through commercial promotion of blood pressure monitors and scales. Critical Public Health. View this article in WRRO
- Racialised prescribing: enacting race/ethnicity in clinical practice guidelines and in accounts of clinical practice. Sociology of Health and Illness: a journal of medical sociology, 40(5), 843-858. View this article in WRRO
- Thinking with care infrastructures: people, devices and the home in home blood pressure monitoring. Sociology of Health and Illness, 40(2), 270-282. View this article in WRRO
- Have we seen the geneticisation of society? Expectations and evidence. Sociology of Health and Illness. View this article in WRRO
- Materiality matters: Blurred boundaries and the domestication of functional foods. BioSocieties, 10(2), 194-212. View this article in WRRO
- The drugs don't sell: DIY heart health and the over-the-counter statin experience. Social science & medicine, 131, 280-288. View this article in WRRO
- Sustained multiplicity in everyday cholesterol reduction: repertoires and practices in talk about ‘healthy living’. Sociology of Health and Illness, 36(2), 291-304. View this article in WRRO
- Do-it-yourself heart health? 'Lay' practices and products for disease prevention. Health Sociology Review, 22(1), 8-18.
- Exploring genetic responsibility for self, family and kin in the case of hereditary raised cholesterol. Social Science and Medicine, 72(11), 1760-1767.
- The subject of functional foods: accounts of using foods containing phytosterols. Sociological Research Online, 16(2).
- Configuring users of cholesterol lowering foods: a review of biomedical discourse. Social Science and Medicine, 71(9), 1541-1547.
- The tenacity of the coronary candidate: How people with familial hypercholesterolaemia construct raised cholesterol and coronary heart disease. Health, 13(4), 405-425.
- Lay involvement and legitimacy: the construction of expertise and participation within H.E.A.R.T. UK. Journal of Contemporary Ethnography: a journal of ethnographic research, 38(2), 254-273.
- A genetic future for coronary heart disease?. Sociology of Health and Illness, 30(3), 380-395.
- Patients' Understandings and Experiences of Familial Hypercholesterolemia. Community Genetics, 11(5), 273-282.
- Are different forms of care-management for older people in England associated with variations in case-mix, service use and care-managers' use of time?. Ageing and Society, 27(1), 25-48.
- Care Managers’ Time Use: Differences Between Community Mental Health and Older People’s Services in the United Kingdom. Care Management Journals, 7(4), 169-178.
- Care management for older people: Does integration make a difference?. Journal of Interprofessional Care, 20(4), 335-348.
- From Care Management to Case Management: What can the NHS Learn from the Social Care Experience?. Journal of Integrated Care, 14(3), 22-31.
- Gene Week: a novel way of consulting the public. Public Understanding of Science, 14(1), 67-79.
- Integrating Health and Social Care at the Micro Level: Health Care Professionals as Care Managers for Older People. Social Policy
Administration, 37(5), 498-515.
- Care management arrangements for older people in England: key areas of variation in a national study. Ageing and Society, 22(04), 419-439.
- Emerging Patterns of Care Management: Arrangements for Older People in England. Social Policy & Administration, 35(6), 672-687.
- Intensive care-management at home: an alternative to institutional care?. Age and Ageing, 30(5), 409-413.
- Care management and the care programme approach: towards integration in old age mental health services. International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, 16(3), 266-272.
- ‘Everybody’s got a dad...’. Issues for lesbian families in the management of donor insemination. Sociology of Health & Illness, 22(4), 477-499.
- Navigating standards, encouraging interconnections: Infrastructuring digital health platforms. Information, Communication and Society. View this article in WRRO
- Surviving and progressing as a research fellow In Dingwall R & Byrne McDonnell M (Ed.), The Sage Handbook of Research Management (pp. 348-357). Sage Publications Limited
- Stimulating public debate on the ethical and social issues raised by the new genetics In Holm S & Jonas M (Ed.), Engaging the World The Use of Empirical Research in Bioethics and the Regulation of Biotechnology (pp. 109-118). IOS Press
- The New Production of Users Routledge
- Sustained Multiplicity in Everyday Cholesterol Reduction: Repertoires and Practices in Talk About ‘Healthy Living’, From Health Behaviours to Health Practices (pp. 132-144). John Wiley & Sons, Ltd
- Genetic Indeterminism of Social Action SAGE Publications, Inc.
- View this article in WRRO Self-Monitoring for Health: Questions for an Emerging Field.
- Research group
Kate is currently supervising PhDs on children's experiences of ecigarettes; digital self-tracking; everyday life with Irritable Bowel Syndrome; and the experiences of people living with sickle cell of forming romantic relationships and having children.
- 2016 - 2019 Sponsor: Leverhulme Trust. Topic: Knowledge, care and the practices of self-monitoring
- 2015-17 Sponsor: ESRC/BBSRC. Topic: EpiStressNet: A biosocial systems approach to understanding the epigenetic embedding of social stress responses.
- 2015-17 Sponsor: ESRC. Topic: New practices for new publics: interdisciplinary dialogues about practice theory approaches and civil society. Seminar series.
- 2014-15 Sponsor: Wellcome Trust. Topic: Racialized Medicine: the use of racial/ethnic categories in prescribing guidance.
- 2012-15 Sponsor: University of Sheffield, Faculty of Social Sciences. Topic: Self-monitoring and consumer health technologies in the domestic, commercial and virtual realms.
- 2010-11 Sponsor: Foundation for the Sociology of Health & Illness. Topic: Pharmaceutical dissent in comparative perspective.
- 2009-11 Sponsor: ESRC. Topic: DIY heart health: accounting for the ‘use’ of over-the-counter statins.
- 2008-10 Sponsor: Leverhulme Trust. Topic: Phytosterols: public expectations and user practices’.
- 2006-08 Sponsor: ESRC/MRC. Topic: Lipids, genetics and coronary heart disease: the construction of a field.
- Teaching activities
Kate currently convenes the following modules:
- Introduction to Social Research (undergraduate)
- Digital Health (undergraduate and postgraduate)
Kate also supervises students taking extended essays and dissertations in Sociology and Social Policy, and Digital Media and Society.