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Celia Roberts supervises 6 postgraduate research students. Some of the students have produced research profiles, these are listed below:

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Dr Celia Roberts

Senior Lecturer

Celia Roberts


Tel: +44 1524 592205

Current Teaching

Teaching and Departmental Roles

I am curently the Co-Director, with VIcky Singleton of the Centre for Gender and Women's Studies and also, with Anne Cronin, Joint Doctoral Director in the Department of Sociology.

In 2015-16 I will teach an MA course, 'Gender, Sex and Bodies' which is a core course for our Women's Studies Programme, as well as co-teaching our bi-annual MA course and summer school on Feminist Technosciece Studies (this year's theme is 'Care Matters'). At the UG level I am co-teaching, wth Vicky Singleton, a 3rd year course entitled 'Health, life and bodies.' I will also delivered six lectures on the Part One Gender and Women's Studies course.

Research Interests

My research centres on the body, health, reproduction, sexuality and aging. My latest book, entitled 'Puberty in Crisis: a bio-psycho-social account', for Cambridge University Press is available from September 2015 (http://www.cambridge.org/gb/academic/subjects/sociology/sociology-gender/puberty-crisis-sociology-early-sexual-development?format=HB). This book brings together feminist science studies, feminist theories of the body, sexuality and girlhood studies to explore the current global 'crisis' in sexual development.

This work builds on my earlier book, Messengers of Sex: hormones, biomedicine and feminism (Cambridge University Press, 2007), which explores the role of hormones in producing sexually differentiated bodies (http://www.cambridge.org/catalogue/catalogue.asp?isbn=9780521681971). In it, I critically analyse scientific and biomedical texts, pharmaceutical advertisements, patient leaflets, and popular media accounts of sex hormones and how they work in our bodies. I have published several articles on this area (see below), with a particular focus on hormone replacement therapy. I am interested in questions of responsibility and risk in contemporary biomedicine, and in how patients come to make decisions about engaging with new medical technologies.

I am also the co-author (with Sarah Franklin) of a book on genetics and reproduction, entitled Born and Made: An ethnography of preimplantation genetic diagnosis (Princeton University Press, 2006) (http://press.princeton.edu/titles/8313.html). This work is based on three years of ethnographic research of the so-called 'designer baby technique' (preimplantation genetic diagnosis, or PGD). This research was funded by the ESRC and MRC within the Innovative Health Technologies programme. With Franklin and Karen Throsby (Warwick University), I have also studied the donation of embryos to stem cell research within the PGD clinic (funded by the Wellcome Trust and CESAGen). Karen Throsby and Ihave since worked together on early puberty and obesity.

My interest in new biomedical technologies has led to collaboration with colleagues in the School of Health and Medicine and the Centre for Science Studies. I have participated in 5 projects funded by the EU; one of which is ongoing. In chronological order these are:

1) A Thematic Network entitled 'Identifying Trends in European Medical Space' (ITEMS), which provides opportunities for scholars and students working on health and medical from social science and humanities' perspectives to come together at meetings and conferences and to develop international projects (see http://www.csi.ensmp.fr/WebCSI/ITEMS/index.htm);

2) A Specific Support Action called 'Governance, health, and medicine: Opening dialogue between social scientists and users' (MEDUSE), which focussed on three areas of research, including the use of new technologies to care for older people living at home (see http://www.csi.ensmp.fr/WebCSI/MEDUSE/);

3) A collaborative research project led by Lancaster, with partners in The Netherlands, Norway and Spain, entitled 'Ethical Frameworks for Telecare Technologies' (EFORTT) (see http://www.lancs.ac.uk/efortt/). This project, led by our group at Lancaster, focussed on older people living at home, looking at the development of new care technologies to assist them in this. In essence, we are investigated what 'care' for older people means today. This project involved ethnographic research and citizens' panels;

4) A collaborative research project led by colleagues at the Ecole des Mines, Paris, with partners in Ireland, the UK and Portugal entitled 'European Patient Organisations in Knowledge Society' (EPOKS) (See http://www.csi.ensmp.fr/WebCSI/EPOKSWebSite/).This project investigated patient organisations across a range of health conditions. In the Lancaster part of the project, Imogen Tyler, Candice Satchwelland I studied British birth organisations and their impact on women's health. This was an ethnographic project;

5) I am part of European Research Council project, led by Ericka Johnson of Linkoeping University, entitled Prescriptive Prescriptions: Prescribing Healthy Subjectivities. This wide-ranging project explores a number of pharmaceuticals, from the HPV vaccine through Alzheimer's medications, to prostate treatments. In my part of the project, I am exploring the use of GnRH analogs to prevent puberty in both cis and trans children.

I also lead the Living Data reearch group, which is funded by Intel Labs. We are working on several projects on biosensing, looking at direct-to-consumer genetic testing, ovulation monitoring and cortisol stress testing. For more information on this work please see:

http://www.research.lancs.ac.uk/portal/en/projects/living-data-making-sense-of-health-biosensors(90a41cde-1b08-481c-b56a-d30c051267b0).html; https://biosensordata.wordpress.com/.



In the past, I have also worked on research projects on breast cancer, HIV/AIDS and heterosexuality, and gender equity in public institutions.

Finally, I am a co-editor of Feminist Theory and recently co-edited, with Myra Hird, a special issue of Feminist Theory on 'non-human feminisms'. I am currently working on another special issue with Raewyn Connell on 'Southern feminist theory.'


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