Dr Jamie Lewis

Email: LewisJT1@cardiff.ac.uk

Educational Background

Jamie Lewis attained a BSc.Econ (Joint Hons) in Psychology and Sociology, an MSc in Social Science Research Methods, and a PhD from the School of Social Sciences at Cardiff University. His PhD thesis called Computing Genomic Science: Bioinformatics and Standardisation in Proteomics explored the highly dynamic relationship between different biological specialisms in the context of genetics and through a succession of recent omic fields including genomics, post-genomics and proteomics. The thesis shed light on the formation of scientific disciplinarity; the characteristics of organised professionalisation and reinvention; the problematic relationships between ‘natural’ and ‘social’ categories, taxonomies and classificatory orders; interdisciplinary communication; and the significant role of standardisation in securing coherence for emerging disciplines.


In addition to his research on bioinformatics and proteomics, Jamie has conducted ethnographic work in a stem cell laboratory and accompanying animal house and, as part of his current role, examines the public understanding of neuropsychiatric genetics and genomics, psychiatric geneticists understanding of the public and the public engagement of mental health and genetics. Previous to his work in the sociology of biomedical science, Jamie also worked on a number of education projects. Jamie’s research interests includes the practice of modelling, particularly the construction of animal models; the regulation, standardisation and surveillance of stem cell tissue; the emergence and stabilisation of bioinformatics; interdisciplinary and cross disciplinary research; and the public understanding and public engagement of genetic/genomic science. His research has given him a strong grounding in conducting qualitative research. He has experience in working with a number of different methodologies: delphi surveys, online research, survey research, semi-structured interviews with elite scientists, and ethnographic practices.

Public Engagement

In his current role as a Research Associate for the newly funded Medical Research Council (MRC) Centre for the Neuropsychiatric Genetics and Genomics (CNGG), Jamie co-launched and co-organises Cardiff sciSCREEN; a public engagement event which uses films as the hook. We have run 27 events using 26 different films, mostly at Chapter Arts Centre, which have included invites to hold events as part of the Cheltenham and Cardiff Science Festivals. Close to 1500 people have attended the events and the blog is home to over 65 essays. With Techniquest, Jamie has also helped design and deliver a 2 hour contemporary science debate focussing on the science behind Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and the social and ethical ramifications of these developments. The debates explore aspects of responsibility, identity, stigma and blame. As it stands, the debate has been delivered to over 895 16-18 year olds in schools based in the convergence areas of Wales.

Over the past 3 years, Jamie has also worked extremely closely with artists especially Julia Thomas and Rhys Bevan Jones. This has culminated in the organisation of two public engagement arts exhibition. The first was held in the Autumn of 2011 at BayArt as part of Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Social Science Week and was called Translation: From Bench to Brain. 300 people attended the week long exhibition which included a variety of other events including public talks and workshops. The second was held in the Summer of 2013 at BayArt as part of the Medical Research Council’s (MRC) centenary events. 400 people attended the week-long event entitled How the Light Gets In which exhibited the work of a dozen artists and included music, public talks, workshops and interactive displays.

Teaching Portfolio

Jamie has taught on a number of courses at Cardiff University. This includes teaching on Qualitative Research in the School of Social Sciences and the School of Medicine, Science and Technology Studies and Science Communication in the School of Social Sciences, Key Ideas in the School of Social Sciences, and the Social Aspects of Bioinformatics in the School of BioSciences. He has also supervised students doing the MSc in genetic counselling. Jamie has refereed articles for BioSocieties, Qualitative Research and New Genetics and Society.


Jamie is an affiliate of Cesagene; a member of the Knowledge, Expertise and Science group, a member of the Ethnography Culture and Interpretive Analysis Group, a member of the Culture, Imagination and Practice Group, and a key member of the MRC CNGG public engagement committee. Jamie also runs the Cardiff Ethnography Blog. Jamie can be found on twitter.

Journal Articles:

Lewis J. and Bartlett A. (2013) ‘Inscribing a Discipline: Tensions in the Field of Bioinformatics’. New Genetics and Society 32(3): 243-263

Lewis J, Atkinson P, Harrington J and Featherstone K (2013) When is an Animal Model Good-Enough? Representation and Embodiment in the Laboratory. Sociology 47(4): 776-792.

Stephens N, Lewis J and Atkinson P (2013) Closing the Regulatory Regress: GMP Accreditation in Stem Cell Laboratories. Sociology of Health and Illness 35(3): 345-360.

Lewis J and Atkinson P (2011) ‘The Surveillance of Cellular Scientists’ Practice. BioSocieties 6: pp381-400.

Power S, Taylor C, Lewis J, Connolly M, Thomas G and Jones SW (2010) Realising the ‘Learning Country: Research Activity and Capacity With Welsh Local Authorities, Contemporary Wales 23(1): 71-92.

Lewis J (2006) Making Order out of a Contested Disorder: the utilisation of online support groups in social science research. Qualitative Researcher. 3(Summer 2006): 4-7.

Power S, Moss G, Lewis J, Whitty G and Edwards T (2005) ‘Staying in touch? The Potential of Friends Reunited as a Research Tool’. Research Intelligence. 92: 6-8.

Harris P, Lewis J and Adam B (2004). Time, Sustainable Transport and the Politics of Speed. World Transport Policy and Practice 10(2): 5-11.

Gorard S, Lewis J and Smith E (2004) Disengagement in Wales: Educational, Social and Economic Issues. The Welsh Journal of Education13(1):118-147.

Book Chapters:

Lewis J (2010) Matchmaking Mechanisms: Collaborative Arrangements in Proteomics and Bioinformatics: In Parker JN, Vermeulen N and Penders B (eds) Collaboration in the New Life Sciences. Surrey: Ashgate Publishers, 179-200.


Lewis J, Thomas J, Bevan-Jones R and Read S (2012) A Report on a Public Engagement Arts Exhibition. Free to download: Art Exhibition Report.

Stephens N, Chekar CK and Lewis J (2009) ‘Global Issues, Regional Engagement: ‘Discussing Stem Cells in Context’ event hosted at the National Assembly for Wales, 19th May 2009’ ESRC Genomics Network Newsletter. Free to download here.

Bartlett A, Lewis J and Holme I (2005) ‘Postgraduate Forum on Genetics and Society: Report on the Ninth Colloquium’. Genomics, Society and Policy 1(3): 82-86.

Fitz J, Taylor C, Pugsley L, Madden L, Stephens N, Lewis J and Smith, M (2005) Attitudes Towards Participation in Higher Education in Wales 2005: Report for the Independent Study into the Devolution of the Student Support System and Tuition Fee Regime. Rees Report.