prof.dr. PM (Philip) Macnaghten

prof.dr. PM (Philip) Macnaghten

Personal Chair in Technology and International Development


Phil Macnaghten is a science and technology studies (STS) scholar, with broad interests in the governance of science and technology, responsible innovation, the sociology of the environment, deliberative methodology and narrative analysis. His early research focused on the cultural dimensions of environmental policy and their intersection with everyday practice. He developed a form of engaged scholarship, combining conceptual work with critical policy development in the domains of rural policy, sustainability policy, technology policy, forestry policy and environmental behavior change. This work led to a well-received book, Contested Natures, to a number of policy monographs, and to papers on environmental policy, environmental behavior change and focus group methodology.

More recently, Phil has worked broadly on the governance of emerging technology and societal engagement, with a particular focus on agricultural genetic modification (GM) technology, nanotechnology, synthetic biology and climate engineering technologies. He led the Nanotechnology, risk and sustainability: moving public engagement upstream project (ESRC: 20042006), the European DEEPEN (Deepening Ethical Engagement and Participation in Emerging Nanotechnologies) project (European Commission: 20062009), co-led a project aimed at developing a framework for responsible innovation for the UK research councils (EPSRC and ESRC: 20112012) and the interdisciplinary 'GMFuturos' project (with biologists, anthropologists and theologians), involving on-the-ground research teams in India, Brazil and Mexico, that sought to understand the socio-cultural impacts of GM crops from an ethnographic basis and what this means for future governance (John Templeton Foundation: 20122014) and which led to the edited collection Governing Agricultural Sustainability: Global lessons from GM crops. This work has generated widely cited publications on technology governance, public participation in science and technology, and responsible innovation, in high impact journal that include: Environment & Planning A, Environment & Planning C, Environmental Planning and Policy, Global Environmental Change, Nature, Public Understanding of ScienceResearch Policy, Science and Public Policy and Science as Culture.

Phil was Founding Director of the Institute of Hazard, Risk and Resilience (IHRR) (20062008), a Demos Associate (20042008), a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (20082012), and has served as a member of EPSRCs Societal Issues Panel (20092011), a member of EPSRCs Strategic Advisory Network (20112014) and chair of the Stagegate panel of the RCUK-funded Stratospheric Particle Injection for Climate Engineering (SPICE) project (20112012).

His new book is Governing Agricultural Sustainability: Global Lessons from GM crops (Routledge: publication date July 2015). 

A complete list of Phil Macnaghten's publications can be found on:

Google Scholar Citations