Gill Haddow

Gill Haddow
Dr Gill Haddow
Wellcome Trust Senior Research Fellow: Society and Ethics
Science Technology and Innovation StudiesSchool of Social and Political ScienceUniversity of Edinburgh
G.32 Old Surgeons' Hall High School Yards Edinburgh UK EH1 1LZ
+44 (0) 131 650 2389
Research Interests
Patient experiences, Cyborgs, Sociology of health and illness, Medical sociology, Qualitative Research Methods, embodiment, new scientific and medical technologies, public engagement, citizen-science

I have a background in the sociology of health and medicine and have developed a special interest in new and emerging scientific and medical technologies.  Conceptually I have brought these interests together through theoretical interests in embodiment, identity and relationships.  Areas of research in the last ten years have included animal-human transplantation; genetic databases; implantable smart technologies; organ transplantation and donation and telemedicine.   In 2013 I was awarded a Wellcome Trust University Award for the project 'Animal, Mechanical and Me: The Search For Replaceable Hearts' and I am currently interviewing people who live life with an implantable cardiac defibrillator.  I enjoy working in and on the interface between science and society studying the processes and outcomes that new and emerging science and technologies produce for individuals, groups and society.  I also like hanging out with other disciplines such as engineers, scientists, lawyers, clinicians, artists etc.  


Cameron Duguid is working with me on a short narration that is inspired by some of the quotes from the people that i have interviewed and ideas that we have discussed when talking about the iconography of the heart:Heart


I have also been working with one of my participant respondents who has recently been implanted with an ICD.  You can see her story (Maggie's Story) on YouTube here at:  It shows Maggie, newly implanted with an ICD, writing about the various emotions, inner dialogue and other people’s reactions to her, on a variety of different backgrounds (Letters, diaries, appointment cards, ECG readings etc).  She is sharing with an audience how it feels to be an ‘everyday cyborg’.  The film-maker Ross Ziegelmeier used stop-motion animation (for an example of his work see ).

I am also one of the deputy directors of the Mason Institute http:\\ (winner of the College Outstanding Team 2015).  Last year, Shawn Harmon, Leah Gilman and I had the pleasure of working with Astrid Jaekel on Vitruvian Man​














My Edinburgh Research Explorer profile can be accessed here



Principal Investigator:

  1. 2015: £35040 Everyday Cyborgs: Stories from Inside Out, Wellcome Trust Enhancement Award for Public Engagement.  
  2. 2013-2018: £289080 University Award from the Wellcome Trust for ‘Animal, Mechanical and Me: The Search For Replaceable Hearts.’
  3. 2012: £6000 Have we Always Been Hybrid? Challenge Investment Fund, The University of Edinburgh.
  4. 2009: £8000 awarded by Health Informatics Centre, University of Dundee for a focus group study on the principles of ‘Multi-Institutional Linkage and Anonymisation’ to data sharing in the NHS.
  5. 2005-2007: £127194 awarded by the CSO, Scottish Executive to engage with the public on the subject of a Scottish DNA databank ‘Generation Scotland: The Scottish Family Health Study’. 
  6. 2003: £8000 the Development Trust Research Fund awarded by the College of Humanities and Social Science to conduct a survey of the Edinburgh populations’ attitudes towards introducing financial incentives to organ donation.


  1. 2014: Wellcome Trust ‘Super-heroes from Fiction to Reality: Depictions, Impacts and the Ethics of the ‘Enhanced Human’. One day workshop.
  2. 2013: EPSRC, Implantable Microsystems for Personalised Anti-Cancer Therapy. Directly Incurred Researcher (20% for 12 months)
  3. 2012: ESRC Scottish Independence Additional Funding regarding the relationship between health research and devolution (20% for 12 months).
  4. 2011: (from various sources) Implantable Smart Technology Project; Technical, Social and Regulatory Challenges (30% for 12 months).
  5. 2011: Banking (on) the Brain, Arts and Humanities Research Council’ (20% for 12 months).

Publications Sole Authored:

* Haddow, G. (2010) ‘The Phenomenology of Death, Embodiment and Organ Transplantation’, Sociology of Health and Illness, Vol. 24, No. 6 pp 92 – 113.  Reproduced with permission in Moore, L. J., and Kosut, M., The Body Reader: Essential Social and Cultural Readings, New York University Press, New York, p. 108-123.

*Haddow G. (2009). ‘We only did it because he asked us’: Family accounts of recruitment to a large-scale population genetic database Social Science & Medicine. 69(7), 1010-1017 (cit 6).

*Haddow, G. (2006). Because you’re worth it? The Taking and Selling of Transplantable Organs. Journal of Medical Ethics, 32, 324-328. (Cit 39)

*Haddow, G. (2005) ‘The Phenomenology of Death, Embodiment and Organ Transplantation’, Sociology of Health and Illness, Vol. 24, No. 6 pp 92 – 113. (Cit 50)

*Haddow, G. (2003) ‘Donor and non-donor families’ accounts of communication and relations with healthcare professionals,’ Progress in Transplantation, Vol.13, No.2 pp.1 – 7. (cit 41)


Joint Articles and Book Chapters (* Refereed):

*Haddow, G., King, E, Kunkler, I, and McLaren D., (2015) ‘Cyborgs in the Everyday: Masculinity and Biosensing Cancer’, Science and Culture. 

*Haddow G., Harmon, S., and Gilman L, (forthcoming) ‘Implantable Smart Technologies (IST): Defining the ‘Sting’ in Data and Device’, Health Care Analysis.

*Harmon, S., Haddow, G., and Gilman L, (forthcoming) ‘Implantable Smart Medical Devices: An Empirical Examination of Characteristics, Risks and Regulation’, Law, Innovation and Technology.

Mikami, K., Alastair, K., and Haddow G., (forthcoming) ‘The Life Costs of living with Rare Diseases: Cases of Huntingdon’s Disease and PKU’ in Kumar, D., and Chadwick, R., (eds) Genomics and Society, Elsevier Press, London.

Ikegwuonu, T   Haddow, G.,   Tait, J   Kunkler, I (2015) Recovering breast cancer patients’ views about the use of in-vivo biosensors to personalise radiotherapy treatment, Innogen Working Paper

Haddow, G., Mittra, J., Snowden, K., Barlow, E., and Wield D., (2014) From Sick Man to living lab – Narratives of Scottish health since devolution. Innogen Working Paper.

Harmon, S., Laurie, G., and Haddow, G. (2013) Governing Risk, Engaging Publics and Engendering Trust: New Horizons for Law and Social Science, Science and Public Policy, 40 (1) 25-33 (cit 4)

*S. Harmon & G. Haddow, (2012) "Banking (on) the Brain: The Neurological in Culture, Law and Science" 12 Medical Law International 79-91.

*Haddow G., Murray, L. & Cunningham-Burley, S., (2011). Can the governance of a population genetic data bank effect recruitment? Evidence from the public consultation of Generation Scotland. Public Understanding of Science. Vol. 20, No. 1 (January) pp. 117-129 (cit 7)

*Haddow, G., Bruce, A., Sathandam, S., and Wyatt, J (2010) Nothing is really safe’: a focus group study on the processes of anonymising and sharing of health data for research purposes. Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice. Available at (Cit 13)

*Haddow, G., Bruce, A., Calvert, J., Harmon, S., & Marsden, W. (2010). Not ‘human’ enough to be human but not ‘animal’ enough to be animal – the case of the HFEA, cybrids and xenotransplantation New Genetics and Society, March, 29 (1) 3 – 9 . (Cit 9)

*Roberts, A., Heaney, D., Haddow, G., & O'Donnell, C.A. (2009). Implementation of a national nurse-led telephone health service in Scotland: assessing the consequences for remote and rural localities. Rural and Remote Health. (Cit 11).

*Haddow, G., Cunningham-Burley, S., Bruce, A., & Parry, S. (2008). Generation Scotland: consulting publics and specialists at an early stage in a genetic database's development. Critical Public Health, 18(2), 139 - 149. (Cit 33)

*Williams, B., Entwistle, V., Haddow G., and Wells, M., (2008) Promoting research participation: Why not advertise altruism? Social Science and Medicine, Vol 66, 7 1451-1456 (Cit 44)

Williams, B., Entwistle, V., Haddow G., and Wells M., (2008) Placing evidence in context: A response to Fry’s commentary, Social Science and Medicine, Vol 66, 7, Pages 1461-1462

Haddow, G., and Cunningham-Burley, S., (2008) ‘Tokens of Trust or Token Trust?: The case of Population Genetic Data Collections’ in ‘Trust, Health and Illness’ (eds) Alexandra Greene, Julie Brownlie and Alexandra Howson, Routledge.

*Haddow, G, O’Donnell, K and Heaney, D. (2007) ‘Organisational identity and its role in the provision of unscheduled immediate health care’, Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice, Volume 13, Issue 2, Page 179-185. (Cit 11)

*Haddow, G., Laurie, G., Cunningham-Burley, S., & Hunter, K. (2007). Tackling Community Concerns about Commercialisation and Genetic Research: A Modest Interdisciplinary Proposal. Social Science and Medicine, 64, 272-282. (Cit 82)

*Smith, B., Campbell, H., Blackwood, D., Connell, J., Connor, M., Deary, I., Dominiczak, A.F., Fitzpatrick, B., Ford, I., Jackson, C., Haddow, G., Kerr, S., Lindsay, R., McGilchrist, M., Morton, R., Murray, G., Palmer, C., Pell, J., Ralston, S., St Clair, D., Sullivan, F., Watt, G., Wolf, R., Wright, A., Porteous, D., & Morris, A. (2006). ‘Generation Scotland: the Scottish Family Health Study: A new resource for researching genes and heritability.’ BMC Medical Genetics, 7, 74 (Cit 54)



 International (2014 – onwards):

  • Haddow G., (January 2015) Conceptualizing Disability as a Public Health Issue: Impairment, Enhancement and Emerging Biotechnologies, Brocher Foundation, Switzerland. 
  • Haddow, G., (October 2014) Everyday Cyborgs and their Life with a Heart Device, The University of Copenhagen.
  • Haddow, G. (April 2014) Everyday Cyborgs and their life with a Heart Device, Wellcome Trust Workshop, ‘Translational Bodies: Ethical, Legal and Social Issues, Prato, Italy.
  • Haddow, G, (January 2014) Me and Mine: What does Embodiment have to say about Property Rights? Broche Foundation, Geneva Switzerland.


National (20114– onwards):

  • Haddow, G., (November 2014) Animal, Mechanical and Me: Muddled Bodies, muddling along; Nuffield Council of Bioethics, Barbican Centre, London.
  • Haddow, G., (November 2014) Animal, Mechanical and Me: What would you choose and what does this say? Everyday Cyborgs, The National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh.     
  • Haddow, G (June 2014) Can Cyborgs Feel: The need for an embodiment epistemology? Ethics, Embodiment, re/production and the lifecourse, The University of Edinburgh.


  • Malissa K Shaw: Embodied Agency and Agentic Bodies: Negotiating Medicalisation in Colombian Assisted Reproduction (Completed).
  • Alison Wheatley: Good Soldiers, Good Guys, and Good Parents: The Meanings of Donation and Donated Tissue in the Context of the Danish Donor Sperm Industry. (Completed).
  • Tirion Seymour: The Third Sector and the Shaping of Scottish Huntingdon’s disease services: organisations, identity and boundary work (ESRC/Open Competition).
  • Leah Gilman: Gender Differences in Gamete Donation in the UK (ESRC/Open Competition (70:30).
  • Sara Bea: In-depth qualitative study on public and stakeholder attitudes to ‘presumed consent’ in organ donation: the meanings and ethical challenges posed by an opt out policy (ESRC/Open Competition (70:30).
  • Karina Romo: Obstetrical Ultrasound and Pregnancy Loss in the Mexican setting (70:30).
  • Aoife McKenna: A sociological study of health-related enhancement technologies in the context of reproduction. (Welcome Trust) (33).
  • Tarmphong Chobisara: The Authentic Research Relationship in Biobanks(50: 50)
  • Natalia Nino Machado (2012): ‘Growing Right’ Child Growth Standards in Colombia (60:30: 10).

Topics interested in supervising

I am interested in identity, embodiment, organ transplantation, genetics, ARTs, public engagement, patient participation, as well as the impact that new and emerging medical biotechnologies have more generally; usually using approaches from medical sociology, sociology of health and illness, or science and technology studies (I am slightly obsessed with the use of electricity in medicine at the moment).

If you are interested in being supervised by Gill Haddow, please see the links below for more information:

PhD in Science and Technology Studies; PhD in Social Anthropology; PhD in Sociology; MSc (R) Science and Technology Studies