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Changing (In)Fertilities



Charis Thompson is the Chancellor's Professor of Gender & Women's Studies, and  a former founding director of the Science, Technology, and Society Center at the University of California, Berkeley, as well as Professor of Sociology, London School of Economics and Political Science. A social theorist, her current book in progress, Getting Ahead, focuses on the relation between science, technology, democracy and inequality in an age of automation and augmentation, and of populism and technology elites.  Getting Ahead is the third in her book series on science and democracy. The first, Making Parents: The Ontological Choreography of Reproductive Technologies (2005), won the Rachel Carson Prize from the Society for the Social Study of Science, and examined reproductive technologies as a new mode of (re)production. The second book, Good Science: The Ethical Choreography of Stem Cell Research (2013), proposed a geopolitical and bioethical theory of bio-innovation economies based on the moral and economic frame of being "pro-cures".  Thompson served on the Nuffield Council on Bioethics Working Group on Genome Editing, and currently serves on the World Economic Forum's Global Technology Council on Technology, Values, and Policy, as well as UC Berkeley's Stem Cell Research Oversight Committee, and the faculty advisory board of the Center for Race and Gender.


Key publications: 

"Good Science, Better Patients".   in A. Bharadwaj, ed. Global Stem Cells,. Palgrave, 2018.

“The Cryo-Politics of Survival from the Cold War to the Present: A Fugue,” in J. Radin and E. Kowal,eds. Cryopolitics: Frozen Life in a Melting World.  MIT Press, 2017

"Practice Makes Parents: Commentary on the Special Issue on "Making Parents: Reproductive Technologies and Parenting Culture Across Borders"," 2017.  Sociological Research Online 22 (2), 16

2016: "IVF global histories, USA: between rock and a marketplace." Reproductive Biomedicine & Society Online, 2. pp. 128-135.

2014: "Designing for the life sciences: the epistemology of elite life science real estate," Tecnoscienza: Italian Journal of Science & Technology Studies, 5 (2). pp. 43-58.

2013 Good Science: The Ethical Choreography of Stem Cell Research. MIT Press.

2011: “Medical Migrations Afterword: Science as a Vacation?” Body and Society 17(2-3): 205-213.

2009: "Medical Tourism, Stem Cells, Genomics: EASTS, Transnational STS, and the Contemporary Life Sciences," East Asian Science, Technology and Society: an International Journal 2(3): 433-438.

2007: “Why we should, in fact, pay for egg donation,” Regenerative Medicine 2(2), 203-209.

2007: “God is in the Details: Comparative Perspectives on the Intertwining of Religion and Assisted Reproductive Technologies,” Culture, Medicine, and Psychiatry 30(4):557-561.

2005 Making Parents: The Ontological Choreography of Reproductive Technologies. MIT Press, Inside Technology Series.

Department of Sociology, London School of Economics and Political Science
 Charis  Thompson
Not available for consultancy