Academic Profile : No longer with NTU

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Asst Prof Ian McGonigle
Nanyang Assistant Professor, School of Social Sciences
PhD, Harvard University, 2018
AM, Harvard University, 2015
MA, University of Chicago, 2013
PhD, University of Cambridge, 2010
BA, University of Dublin, 2007

Ian McGonigle is a Nanyang Assistant Professor in the Division of Sociology at NTU where he founded and directs the Global Science, Technology, and Society Laboratory. His research focuses on the mutual entanglements of technologies and social identities, especially biotechnologies and ethnoreligious identities.

His latest book (co-edited with Rachel Feldman), Settler-Indigeneity in the West Bank (McGill-Queen’s University Press), asks what Israeli settlers mean when they say they are indigenous; how settler indigeneity is felt, performed, and mediated; and what the implications of indigeneity claims are on the international stage.

His first book, Genomic Citizenship: The Molecularization of Identity in the Contemporary Middle East (MIT Press) - based on his Harvard dissertation that won the Association for Middle East Anthropology dissertation award - is an anthropological study based on ethnographic work in Israel and Qatar that explores the relationship between science, particularly genetics, and national identity. He has also published research in Anthropology Today; Asian Anthropology; East Asian Science, Technology and Society; Ethnos: Journal of Anthropology; HAU: Journal of Ethnographic Theory; Science, Technology & Society; and The Journal of Law and the Biosciences.

Professor McGonigle is also a filmmaker. His second film - titled Technologies of the Soul: Ancient Wisdom in the Smart Nation - examines technology and tradition in Singapore through the viewpoints of its ten recognized religions. His first film was a multi-award-winning ethnographic documentary - titled Redemption: Wine and Prophecy in the Land of Israel - about religious nationalism in contemporary Israel.

His current research investigates the influence of knowledge of genetics - especially one's own genetics - on healthcare treatment and social support networks in East Asia. This project uses public surveys, clinical observation, longitudinal interviews, and film, to elucidate the relationships between public perceptions of - and engagement with - precision medicine initiatives.

Before training in the anthropology of science and technology, Professor McGonigle worked as a biologist, resolving the structure-function relationships of neurotransmitter receptors. His scientific work was published in journals including Biochemistry, Biophysical Journal, The FASEB Journal, and The Journal of Neuroscience.

Ian teaches contemporary social theory; science and identity; societies in comparison; and he is preparing a course on technological change.
Ethnopharmacology; Middle Eastern Societies; Philosophical Anthropology; Religious Nationalism; Science, Technology, & Society
  • The Molecularization of Identity: Science and Nation Building in the 21st Century