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Personal profile


John Gardner is a sociologist and STS (science & technology studies) scholar, with expertise on the social and ethical dimensions of technology and innovation. 

John’s research focuses primarily on the sociological dimensions of medical innovation.  It investigates how social values and expectations shape innovation processes, and it examines the social and ethical aspects of new medical technologies. His work so far has explored a number of critical issues in healthcare, such as: the relationship between medical practices, identity and sociality; the operationalisation of patient-centred care; cultural and institutional barriers to technology implementation; and distributive justice in biomedical innovation.  His recently published monograph, Rethinking the Clinical Gaze (2017) draws on ethnographic research of a pioneering clinical team to examine the biopolitical implications of patient-centred medicine.

Much of John’s work has focused on translational neuroscience, neurotechnologies such as deep brain stimulation (DBS), and the emerging field of regenerative medicine.  His research in these areas involves working within interdisciplinary teams, and it aims to draw on social science methodologies to facilitate responsible research & innovation.  His recent research on DBS investigates the negative impact of the ‘techno-solutionist’ ideologies on development and delivery of neurological treatments, while also identifying strategies to support effective care.

John is a founding member of The Neurosocieties Group at Monash

John obtained his Wellcome Trust-funded PhD from Brunel University London in 2014.  He undertook postdoctoral research in the Science & Technology Studies Unit (SATSU) at the University of York (UK) before joining the School of Social Sciences as a Health & Biofutures Research Fellow in 2017. He has training in both science and social sciences, with degrees from Victoria University of Wellington, NZ (MA, BA Hons) and University of Otago, NZ (BSc).

Research area keywords

  • Medical Sociology
  • Science and Technology Studies
  • Psychedelics in society
  • Neurotechnologies
  • Poststructuralism


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