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Dr Rebecca Dimond

Dr Rebecca Dimond


School of Social Sciences

+44 (0)29 2251 0113
Room 0.74, Glamorgan Building


Rebecca has been awarded an ESRC Future Research Leaders grant to explore the development of reproductive technologies involving mitochondria transfer. Her project is titled 'Patient and professional understanding of risk: how complexity and uncertainty of genetic knowledge impacts on reproductive decision making'. (ESRC ref 504751       2014 - 2017).

The emergence of novel IVF techniques involving mitochondria donation could give women with mitochondrial disease the opportunity to have healthy children. The possibility that a future generation can be born without mitochondrial disease has been widely embraced by patients and professionals. However, accounts of mitochondrial donation, particularly within media coverage assume a level of technological determinism, that if these techniques are available then this will 'halt', 'eliminate' or 'eradicate' mitochondrial disease from families. The research will contribute to the debate by examining how patients with mitochondrial disease make reproductive choices, how their experiences of health and illness shape or direct their decisions and how the debate around mitochondria technologies has developed.

Rebecca's work and recent studies have been within the field of medical sociology. Rebecca has worked on several research projects within Cardiff School of Social Sciences, exploring the implications of genetic disease for patients, families and professionals. Her PhD, completed in 2011 and supervised by Professor Paul Atkinson and Dr Katie Featherstone, examined the social construction of a rare genetic disorder, 22q11 deletion syndrome. This was a multi-sited ethnography, drawing on observation of clinical consultations and conferences, and interviews with families and health professionals. Before this, she worked as a research assistant examining communication strategies of patients and carriers of haemophilia. Following her PhD, she worked as a research associate focusing on the patient experience of mitochondrial disease in the context of emerging reproductive technologies (PI Professor Ruth Chadwick). Rebecca gained an MSc in Social Science Research Methods whilst studying for her PhD and has a BSc and MA with the Open University.

Rebecca is one of the organisers of the Medicine, Science and Culture group (MeSC) within SOCSI and is a co-convenor of the BSA Medical Sociology (Wales) group.













  • Classification of genetic syndromes and their consequences
  • Reproductive technologies
  • Patient, family and professional perspectives
  • Qualitative research methods