Professor Catherine Waldby

PhD Social Sciences (Murdoch University); MA Hons First Class (Sydney University); BA (University of Queensland) 1982
ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences
T: 6125 2257

Areas of expertise

  • Sociology And Social Studies Of Science And Technology 160808
  • Culture, Gender, Sexuality 200205
  • Globalisation And Culture 200206
  • Economic Theory 1401
  • Social Theory 160806

Research interests

Social studies of biomedicine and the life sciences, particularly in HIV/AIDS, the relations between medicine and sexuality, modes of medical imaging and representation, the stem cell sciences, Synthetic Biology and human tissue economies.

Professor Waldby has published six monographs and over fifty papers in a broad range of journals. Her work is highly cited in the humanities and medical sciences as well as the social sciences. 


Professor Catherine Waldby is Director of the Research School of Social Sciences, at the Australian National University, and Visiting Professor at the Department of Social Science and Medicine at King’s College London. Her researches focuses on social studies of biomedicine and the life sciences. Her recent books include The Global Politics of Human Embryonic Stem Cell Science: Regenerative Medicine in Transition, (with Herbert Gottweis and Brian Salter, Palgrave 2009) and Clinical Labour: Tissue donors and Research Subjects in the Global Bioeconomy (with Melinda Cooper, Duke University Press 2014). With Nikolas Rose and Hannah Landecker, she is the editor of BioSocieties: an interdisciplinary journal for the social studies of life sciences. She is a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia and a member of the History and Philosophy committee of the Academy of Science.  She has received national and international research grants for her work on stem cells, blood donation and biobanking.

Researcher's projects

Project Grants

2020-2022  A/Prof. Wendy Lipworth, Prof Ian Kerridge, Prof. William Ledger, Prof. Robert Norman, Prof Cameron Stewart Associate Prof Ainsley Newson, Prof Isabel Karpin, Prof Catherine Mills, Prof Catherine Waldby, Dr Christopher Mayes ‘Addressing Commercial Influences in Assisted Reproductive Technology’ NHMRC Project APP1181401 $794,576

2018-2021 Katherine Carroll and Catherine Waldby ‘Lactation after loss in contemporary motherhood and healthcare delivery’ ARC DP 180100517, $371,815.   

2015-2018 Prof Cameron Stewart, A/Prof Ian Kerridge, Prof Catherine Waldby, A/Prof Megan Munsie, Dr Wendy Lipworth, Dr Tamra Lysaght. ‘Regulating Autologous Stem Cell Therapies in Australia’ Australian Research Council Linkage Project LP150100739. Partner organizations:  Multiple Sclerosis Research Australia, Arthritis Australia, Motor Neurone Disease Association of Australia, $598,622

2015-2018 CIs Ian Kerridge, Catherine Waldby, Cameron Stewart, Simon Easteal,  Robert Cumming, Emma Kowal, Warwick Anderson, Wendy Lipworth, Christine Critchley, Paula Marlton ‘Biobank Networks, Medical Research and the Challenge of Globalisation’ NHMRC Project APP1083980, $763,644

2008-2011 CIs Catherine Waldby, Ian Kerridge & Loane Skene, ‘Human Oöcytes for Stem Cell Research: Donation and Regulation in Australia’. Industry Partner: Western Sydney IVF. Australian Research Council Linkage Project - LP0882054, $305,000

2005-2008 Brian Salter and Catherine Waldby Chief Investigators ‘The global biopolitics of human embryonic stem cells’ ESRC Project Grant, RES-340-25-0001, £271,810

2006-2008 The Austrian Genome Research Program – ‘the Genome-Austria Tissue Bank’ Chief Investigator: Professor Kurt Zatloukal. €1.3 million Subprogram 2: Biobanks and the local/global, socio-economic, scientific-technological, ethical, and political context.  Convenor: Professor Herbert Gottweis (Austria), Principle Investigators Dr. Catherine Waldby (Australia), Dr. Rob Mitchell (USA), Professor Gísli Pálsson (Iceland), Professor Ruth Chadwick (UK), €300,000

2003-2004 N. Wakeford, C. Waldby & N. Green 'Constructing the future of feminist science and technology studies’ ESRC Research Seminar Grant RES-451-26-0106, £8,720

2001 - 2003 C. Waldby, S Kippax & M Rosengarten ‘An analysis of blood awareness for Hepatitis C prevention education and health promotion’. National Health and Medical Research Project Grant  002714, $195,000

Fellowships and Scholarships

2011 – 2015 C. Waldby ‘The Oöcyte economy: The changing meanings of human eggs in fertility, assisted reproduction and stem cell research’ ARC Future Fellowship FT100100176, 851, 087

2008 Andrew Webster and Catherine Waldby (Host collaborator), International Visiting Research Fellowship, Sydney University - The social studies of biomedical science: building research capacity and collaboration, $11,500

2008 ESRC International Visiting Research Fellowship - to visit Centre for Biomedicine & Society, King's College, London, £2750

2006-2011 International Research Fellowship, University of Sydney, $100,000

2004 Faculty Fellowship, UNSW - to complete manuscript ‘Tissue Economies’, $29,666

Research Network Grants

Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia Workshop: The Survey and the State: How social science expertise made the Twentieth Century. Monash University, Melbourne, 13 – 14 July 2016 Convenors: Dr Clare Corbould, Dr Charlotte Greenhalgh, Professor Warwick Anderson FASSA, Professor Catherine Waldby FASSA. $9000

University of Sydney Research Network Scheme (2013-15): Network for Bodies, Organs and Tissues (NBOT), $280,000 

European Commission’s COST (Collaboration in Science and Technology) programme: ‘Bio-objects and their boundaries: governing matters at the intersection of society, politics, and science’. COST Action IS1001, € 500,000

Sydney University International Program Grant (2011-2013) ‘Bio-objects and their boundaries: governing matters at the intersection of society, politics, and science’, $34,000 

Sydney University Institute of Social Sciences ‘Biopolitics of Science’ research network, $28,000

Sydney University International Program Development Grant (2009 – 2010) ‘Regenerative medicine in Europe: emerging needs and challenges in a global context', $17, 900   

External Infrastructure Funds

2003-4 Ian Robinson & Catherine Waldby - Sociology Research Centres bid for Science Research Infrastructure Funding (Higher Education Funding Council for England), £75,000


2002 - The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority, UK 'Social and bioethical implications of sex preselection technology', £2,320

2000-2001 C. Waldby & S. Kippax ‘Evaluation of the Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations/National Association of People Living with HIV/AIDS education project’, $101,030

Scientific Advisory Committees

Member of the History and Philosophy of Science Committee, Australian Academy of Science 2016 onwards.

International reference group member, ‘Towards an Ethics of Bodily Giving and Sharing in Medicine” Swedish Collegium for Advanced Studies and Linköping University, Sweden 2012-2014.

Scientific Committee, Society For Social Studies Of Science (4S) & European Association For The Study of Science and Technology (EASST) Biannual meeting,  Rotterdam, The Netherlands 20-23 August 2008

International Advisory Committee, ‘Regenerative medicine in Europe: emerging needs and challenges in a global context’ EU FP7 project 2008-2010.

Bioethical Advisory Committee, Genome Austria Tissue Bank, June 2006 - 2008.

Scientific Advisory Committee, National Centre for HIV Social Research, UNSW, 2001 - 2010


Projects and Grants

Grants information is drawn from ARIES. To add or update Projects or Grants information please contact your College Research Office.

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Updated:  22 July 2024 / Responsible Officer:  Director (Research Services Division) / Page Contact:  Researchers