Prof. Dr. Sabine Maasen

Former Director MCTS & Schiedel Chair of Sociology of Science

Sociology of Science

Sabine Maasen studied sociology, linguistics and psychology at the University of Bielefeld. In 1996, she received her doctorate in sociology, followed by her habilitation in 2001. From 1988 to 1994, she was research assistant at the Center for Interdisciplinary Research, Bielefeld, and from 1994 to 2001 research coordinator at the Max Planck Institute for Psychological Research, Munich. In 2001, she was appointed to a professorship for science research/ sociology of science at the University of Basel, Switzerland. Since December 2013, she holds the Friedrich Schiedel Endowed Chair in Sociology of Science at Technical University of Munich. Under the title ‘Exploring TechnoSocieties’, her group investigates how new technologies (such as social robotics, neurotechnologies) challenge lives of individuals, collectives and (Techno)Society. At the same time, Sabine Maasen is head of Munich Center for Technology in Society (MCTS), which conducts multidisciplinary research on ‘science and technology in technologized societies’. She is a member of many committees e.g. the scientific commission of the German Council of Science and Humanities as well as the Scientific Commission of Lower Saxony.

  • Interdisciplinary and transversal TechnoSciences
  • Sociotechnical arrangements of self and society
  • Discourse Analysis (of images)
  • Metaphor Analysis
  • Sociology of Science
  • Science Management


  • With Harald Atmanspacher (Ed.) (2016): Reproducibility: Principles, Problems, Practices, and Prospects. A Handbook, New York: Wiley.
  • With Barbara Sutter (2016) Dezentraler Panoptismus: Subjektivierung unter technosozialen Bedingungen im Web 2.0 (Decentral Panoptism. Subjectivisation under Technosocial Conditions in Web 2.0), in: Geschichte und Gesellschaft. Zeitschrift für Historische Sozialwissenschaft, 42 (1), 175-194.
  • With Sascha Dickel (2016), Partizipation, Responsivität, Nachhaltigkeit. Zur Realfiktion eines neuen Gesellschaftsvertrags (Participation, Responsiveness, Sustainability. On the ‚real-fiction’ of a new Social Contract), in: Dagmar Simon, Andreas Knie, Stefan Hornbostel und Karin Zimmermann (Eds.): Handbuch Wissenschaftspolitik, Wiesbaden: Springer VS, 1-18.
  • With Mario Kaiser, Martin Reinhart, Barbara Sutter (Eds.) (2012), Handbuch Wissenschaftssoziologie (Handbook Sociology of Science), Wiesbaden: Springer VS.
  • With Pascal Eitler, Jens Elberfeld, Maik Tändler (Eds.) (2011): Das beratene Selbst – Zur Genealogie der Therapeutisierung der >langen < Siebziger (The advised Self – Genealogy of the > long < Seventies), Bielefeld: transcript.
  • With Mario Kaiser, Monika Kurath and Christoph Rehmann-Sutter (Eds.) (2009): Governing Future Technologies. Nanotechnology and the Rise of an Assessment Regime, Yearbook Sociology of the Sciences, Dordrecht: Springer.
  • Sabine Maasen (2009): Wissenssoziologie (Sociology of Knowledge), Bielefeld: transcript (new Edition).


→ Current Course Offerings

Courses (English):

  • Practices and Policies in Science and Technology
  • Lecture Series
  • Academic Skills
  • Neuroscience, Technology, and Society

Contribution to Master’s degree program ‘Neuroengineering’

  • Roboethics
  • Robots in Science Fiction and Society

Study program ‘Science-Technology-Society’ (Wissenschaft-Technik-Gesellschaft, WTG)

  • Member of ‘Expertenkommission Bayern Mobilität 2030‘ (Expert Commission on Mobility in Bavaria 2030), 2016/2017
  • Member of the Working Group on ‘Grand Challenges’, initiated by the German Council of Science and Humanities and on the position paper ‘Zum wissenschaftspolitischen Diskurs über Große gesellschaftliche Herausforderungen’, 2015
  • Member of the Working Group on ‘Wissenschafts- und Hochschulforschung’ (Science and Higher Education Studies), initiated by the German Council of Science and Humanities and on the position paper ‘Institutionelle Perspektiven der Wissenschafts- und Hochschulforschung in Deutschland’, 2014
  • „Implementierung interdisziplinärer Forschungsförderung. Begleitforschung und Empfehlungen“ (Implementation of Interdisciplinary Research Funding. Accompanying Research and Recommendation), commissioned by SNF, 2008
  • Member of the German ‘Wissenschaftsrat’
  • Scientific Advisory Board at Institute of Technology Assessment of the Austrian Academy of Sciences, Vienna
  • Full member of the National Academy of Science and Engineering (acatech)
  • Member of the scientific Advisory Board ‘Wissenschaftliche Kommission Niedersachsen‘ (WKN) (Scientific Commission Lower Saxony)
  • Head of Senate, Bavarian School of Public Policy (HfP) at TUM
  • Advisory Board Deutsches Zentrum für Hochschul- und Wissenschaftsforschung‘ (DZHW) (German Center of Higher Education and Science Studies)
  • Advisory Board ‘International Centre for Higher Education Research’ (INCHER)
  • Advisory Board ‘Zukunftsrat der Bayerischen Wirtschaft’ (Future Council of the Bavarian Economy)
  • Member of the Working Group on ‘Additive Fertigung und 3D-Druck’ (Additive Manufacturing and 3D-Printing), Leopoldina
  • Member of Advisory Board at ‘Collegium Helveticum‘ at ETH & University of Zurich
  • Board of trustees of ‘Deutsches Museum’
  • Munich Editorial Board ‘Yearbook Sociology of the Sciences’ (Springer)
  • Editorial Board of the Series ‘Wissenschafts- und Technikforschung’ (Science and Technology Studies, Nomos)
  • Editorial Board ‘Minerva. A Review of Science, Learning and Policy’ (Springer)
  • Editorial Board ‘NanoEthics. Studies of New and Emerging Technologies
  • ’Scientific board ‘Zeitschrift für Geschichte der Wissenschaften, Technik und Medizin’ (Journal of the History of Science, Technology and Medicine)
  • Scientific Advisory Board ‘Body Politics. Zeitschrift für Körpergeschichte’ (Journal of the History of the Body)
  • German Sociological Association Section: Sociology of Knowledge
  • Society for the Social Studies of Science (4S)
  • European Association for the Social Studies of Science (EASST)
  • Visiting Professor at the Department of Social Studies of Science in Vienna, the Cluster of Excellence ‘Cultural Foundations of Integration’ at Institute for Advanced Study in Constance, the Institute for Science Communication and Higher Education Research in Vienna/Klagenfurt, the Catholic University of Eichstätt – Ingolstadt and Visiting Fellow at the Social Science Research Center Berlin
  • Associate Fellow at Collegium Helveticum, joint institution of ETH and University Zurich