Dr Gareth Thomas

Research Associate

Research group:
Social & environmental psychology
029 208 74007
51A, Park Place

Research summary

My research interests lie at the intersection between technology and psycho-socially and institutionally derived ideas, identities, values and practices. In particular I am interested how objects and technologies are interpreted and enacted in context. In previous work I have examined these processes in relation to innovation policy and the construction of waste in everyday life. At present I am researching perceptions around CO2 capture and storage (CCS) technologies, with a particular focus on how experts and publics situate CCS in relation to ideas and values centred on future risk and trust in authorities.

Selected publications (2014 onwards)


Full list of publications


Research topics and related papers

I am currently a member of the School of Psychology’s Understanding Risk Group, working on the EPSRC funded project CO2 Injection and Storage- short and long term behaviour at different spatial scales. This project is examining risks associated with CO2 injection and storage, a technology that aims to reduce atmospheric CO2 emissions by capturing them at power plants and other industrial sources and injecting them deep underground, thus preventing them from contributing to climate change. Researchers from the Understanding Risk Group will be conducting deliberative workshops to examine how trust and wider values shape how experts and members of the public perceive the risks and benefits associated with CO2 injection and storage.
In previous work I have provided qualitative analysis for Cardiff’s Energy Biographies Project, in particular focusing on how psycho-social experiences of practices and interdependency texture subjects constructions of waste in everyday life. My PhD focused on UK innovation policy, specifically in relation to hydrogen energy technologies. Drawing insights from science and technologies studies and policy studies it developed an interpretive case study account of the role of ideas and power in innovation governance processes.

Postgraduate education

2016- PhD, University of Birmingham (EPSRC funded). Thesis title: Constructing the Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Community: a case study of networked innovation governance.