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Visiting Fellows

Dr Alex Faulkner

Senior Research Fellow 

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Dr Alex Faulkner's major current research projects examine:

  1. The adoption space of early-emerging technologies: innovation, evaluation, gatekeeping. PI, 05/2009-10/2011, National Institute of Health Research, Service Delivery & Organisation (NIHR SDO) Technology Adoption award: £420,000. 
  2. State strategies of governance in global biomedical innovation: the impact of China and India. ESRC, ‘Rising Powers’ programme, PI Prof Brian Salter, 4/2010-3/2011, £78,000 (including Visiting Fellows).

Alex has recently held two ESRC awards as Principal Investigator, researching the development of EU and UK regulation and law in tissue engineering, totalling over £250,000. 

Alex is currently a member of the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) Medical Technologies Advisory Committee (MTAC) from 2009.

Alex is a convenor of a Masters module on Science Policy & Society.

Research Interests

The dynamics between medical technologies, healthcare and society provide an over-arching framework to my research, which is focused in three areas:

  • applying perspectives from Science & Technology Studies to understanding the innovation, adoption and governance of medical and health-related technologies, both nationally and internationally, and both inside and outside healthcare systems
  • the sociology of medico-scientific and healthcare knowledge
  • social, organisational and policy aspects of healthcare innovation.

These three areas encompass more detailed interests in:

  • The relationship between technology innovation and regulation, governance and law
  • European medical device and human materials regulation and policies
  • the relationships between elite sports and innovative biomedicine
  • global governance of biomedical innovation
  • STS approaches to sciences and technologies of ageing and regeneration
  • The evidence-based movements in medicine/healthcare
  • Comparative case study methodology.

Technologies of particular interest are:

Medical devices in general; Tissue-engineering and cell-based therapies; Screening and risk profiling; Human implant technologies including artificial hips, and knee cartilage regeneration; Technologies for early detection of disease or risk, such as prostate cancer testing; Home-monitoring and near-patient testing of chronic illness and treatment, such as anticoagulation therapy; ‘anti-ageing’ technologies.

Alex welcomes expressions of interest for postgraduate research in any of these or related areas. 


Alex has current projects in the pipeline to edit or co-edit journal special issues on: (1) the synergy between Science & Technology Studies and Socio-Legal Studies; (2) The Regulatory Dynamics of Therapeutic Technologies in Europe; and (3) Technology, Innovation and Images of Health and Ageing.

Faulkner, A. (2012) Medical Technology.  In : Gabe J., Monaghan L. (eds.) Key Concepts in Medical Sociology, 2nd ed. Sage Publications.

Faulkner A., Lange B., Lawless C. (2012) Introduction: Material Worlds: intersections of law, science, technology and society. Special Issue of Journal of Law and Society. (Also published as a book by Wiley-Blackwell).

Mahalatchimy A, Rial-Sebbag E, Tournay V, Faulkner A. (2012) The legal landscape for Advanced Therapies: material and institutional implementation of European Union rules in France and the UK, in: A. Faulkner and C. Lawless (eds). Material Worlds: intersections of law, science, technology and society. Special Issue of Journal of Law and Society.

Faulkner A. (2012) Introduction: Steering Biomedicine: regulatory dynamics of therapeutic technologies in Europe. Special Issue (ed. A. Faulkner) of INNOVATION: the European Journal of Social Science Research.

Faulkner A. (2012) Tissue engineered technologies: regulatory pharmaceuticalisation in the European Union. In: Steering Biomedicine: regulatory dynamics of therapeutic technologies in Europe. Special Issue (ed. A.Faulkner) of INNOVATION: the European Journal of Social Science Research.

Faulkner, A. (forthcoming) Trial, trial, trial again: reconstructing the gold standard in the science of prostate cancer detection. In: Will, C. & Moreira T. (eds). Medical Proofs/Social Experiments: clinical trials in context. Ashgate.

Faulkner, A. (2010). How Law Makes Technoscience: The Shaping of Expectations, Actors and Accountabilities in Regenerative Medicine in Europe. Working Paper No.1, Centre for Studies in Science Policy, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. CSSPEWPS 1. March 2010.

Faulkner, A. (2010). Blume, S. The Artificial Ear: Cochlear implants and the culture of deafness. Sociology of Health and Illness (in press). Book review.

Faulkner, A. (2009) Medical Technology into Healthcare and Society: a sociology of devices, innovation and governance, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.

Faulkner. A. (2008) Regulatory policy as innovation: constructing rules of engagement of a technological zone for tissue engineering in the European Union, Research Policy, 38 (4):637-46.

Faulkner A, Geesink I, Kent, J, FitzPatrick D (2008)Tissue-engineered technologies: scientific biomedicine, frames of risk and regulatory regime-building in Europe, Science as Culture, 17, 2, 195-222.

Faulkner A. (2008). Unconventional Medicine? Turning Tissue Engineered Technologies into Pharmaceuticals in the European Regulatory Regime. In: Greco G.N. (ed.). Tissue Engineering Research Trends, New York: Nova Science Publishers.

Faulkner A, Kent J, Geesink I, Fitzpatrick D. (2006). Purity and the dangers of regenerative medicine: regulatory innovation of human tissue engineered technology. Social Science & Medicine, 63, 2277-88.

Kent, J., Faulkner, A., Geesink, I., FitzPatrick, D. (2006). Culturing cells, reproducing and regulating the self. Body & Society, 12, 2, 1-23.

Brown, N.; Faulkner, A. Kent, J; Michael, M. (2006).Regulating Hybrids: `Making a Mess' and `Cleaning Up' in Tissue Engineering and Transpecies Transplantation. Social Theory & Health, 4, 1, 1-24.

Shaw I, Faulkner A. (2006). Practitioner Evaluation at Work. American Journal of Evaluation, 27: 44-63.

Kent, J., Faulkner, A., Geesink, I., & FitzPatrick, D. (2006). Towards Governance of Human Tissue Engineered Technologies in Europe: Framing the case for a new regulatory regime. Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 73, 41-60.

Brown N, Faulkner A, Kent J, Michael M. (2006). Regulating hybridity – policing pollution in Tissue Engineering and Transpecies Transplantation. In: A. Webster (Ed.). New Technologies in Health Care: challenge, change and innovation. Palgrave Macmillan.

Holland S, Faulkner A. R. Perez-del-Aguila (2005) Promoting stability and continuity of care for looked after children: a survey and critical review. Child & Family Social Work 10 (1), 29–41.

Faulkner A, Kent J, Fitzpatrick D, Geesink I. (2003). Human tissue engineered products—drugs or devices? British Medical Journal 326: 1159-1160. [Editorial].

Kent J, Faulkner A. (2002). Regulating human implant technologies in Europe – understanding the new era in medical device regulation. Health, Risk & Society, 4, 2, 190-209.

Faulkner A. (2002). Casing the joint: the material development of artificial hips. In: Ott K, Serlin D, Mihm S. Artificial Parts, Practical Lives: modern histories of prosthetics. New York University Press.

Faulkner A, Kent J. (2001). Innovation and regulation in human implant technologies: developing comparative approaches, Social Science and Medicine, 53, 895–913.

Faulkner A, Donovan J, Brookes S, Selley S, Gillatt D, Hamdy F. (2000). The use of prostate-specific antigen testing in the detection of localised prostate cancer: current opinion and urological practice in the United Kingdom. European Journal of Public Health, 10(4) 289-295.

Donovan J, Frankel S, Faulkner A, Selley S, Gillatt D, Hamdy F. (1999). Dilemmas in treating early prostate cancer: the evidence and a questionnaire survey of consultant urologists in the United Kingdom. British Medical Journal, 318, 299-300.

Watkins C, Harvey I, Langley C, Faulkner A, Gray S. (1999). General practitioners’ use of computers during the consultation and barriers to their use. British Journal of General Practice, 49, 381-3.

Somerset M, Faulkner A, Shaw A, Dunn E, Sharp D. (1999). Obstacles on the path to a primary care-led NHS: complexities of outpatient care. Social Science & Medicine, 48, 213-225.

Langley C, Faulkner A, Watkins C, Gray S, Harvey I. (1998). Use of guidelines in primary care: practitioners’ perspectives. Family Practice, 15(2), 105-111.

Shaw A, Somerset M, Dunn L, Peters T, Faulkner A, Sharp D. (1998).Can we trust the quality of routine hospital outpatient information in the UK? Validating outpatient data from the patient administration system (PAS). Journal of Health Services Research & Policy; 3(4): 203-6.

Faulkner A, Kennedy LG, Baxter K, Donovan J, Wilkinson M, Bevan G. (1998). Effectiveness of hip prostheses in primary total hip replacement: critical review of evidence, and an economic model. Health Technology Assessment, vol 2 No.6. (whole volume).

Selley S, Donovan J, Faulkner A, Coast J, Gillatt D. (1997). Diagnosis, management and screening of early localised prostate cancer. Health Technology Assessment , vol. 1 No.2 (whole volume).

Faulkner A. (1997). ‘Strange bedfellows’ in the laboratory of the NHS? An analysis of the new science of health technology assessment in the United Kingdom. In: Elston MA (ed) The sociology of medical science and technology. Sociology of Health and Illness Monograph No. 3.

Faulkner A, Harvey I, Peters T, Sharp D, Frankel S. (1997). Profiling outpatient workload: practice variations between consultant firms and hospitals in South West England. Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health, 51(3), 310-314.

Sheldon T, Faulkner A. (1996) Vetting new technologies. British Medical Journal, 313, 508 [Editorial].

Faulkner A, Saltrese-Taylor A,Williams M, O’Brien J, Collins CD, & Frankel S. (1995).Outpatients revisited: subjective views and clinical decisions in the management of general surgical outpatients in South West England. Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health, 49, 599-605.

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