Mary Ebeling, PhD

Associate Professor of Sociology

Mary Ebeling

Office: PSA 218
Phone: 215.895.6145

Curriculum Vitae: Download PDF


  • PhD, Sociology, University of Surrey, 2006

Research and Teaching Interests

  • Science and Technology Studies (STS)
  • Emerging Technologies and Biocapital
  • Media and Democratic Cultures
  • Radical Social Movements
  • Sociology of Markets
  • Political Sociology
  • Ethnographic Methodologies

Research Projects

  • Two-Year Colleges and the Invention of Nano-Labor: Between Promise and Possibility. Co-Principal Investigator. A collaborative research project with Dr. Amy Slaton (History & Politics, Drexel University) with support from the Nation Science Foundation (NSF) investigating technical education in nanomanufacturing and the links to the development of a nanotech-based economic sector in the Philadelphia region.
  • Translational machines: Nanobiotechnologies in two postindustrial regions, Philadelphia and Milan. Principal Investigator. Collaborative research with Prof. Paolo Milani (Physics, University of Milan) on technological transfer in the nanobiotech sector as it is emerging in Philadelphia and Milan. Support provided by the College of Arts and Sciences and the Office of Faculty Development and Equity, Drexel University. 
  • Pharmaceutical advertising and ethnography of marketing. Principal Investigator. Support provided by the Advertising Educational Foundation, New York, NY.


Mary Ebeling works in the intersections of science, technologies, media and political aesthetics, medicine, feminism and social justice. Her current scholarship focuses on patient health privacy, the commodification of private data and the data-broker industry. Additionally, she continues to work with artists and activists organized in collectives and engaged in critical, political aesthetical practices in urban spaces in the Caribbean, Europe and in North America, including Beta-Local (San Juan, PR) and Konsthall C (Stockholm, Sweden). Some of her recent projects investigated pharmaceutical direct-to-consumer marketing and the construction of diseases, nanotechnologies and the making of neoliberal subjects in 2-year college education, translational nanomedicine in Italy and scientific capitalism, and financial risk, nanotechnologies and science journalism in North America and the United Kingdom. She graduated in Sociology from the University of Surrey, United Kingdom, and holds degrees from Northwestern (MsJ) and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (BFA).

Selected Publications

  • Ebeling, Mary. Get with the Program!': Pharmaceutical marketing, symptom checklists and self-diagnosis. Social Science and Medicine, 2011.
  • Ebeling, Mary. Marketing Chimeras: The biovalue of rebranded medical devices. In Aronczyk, M. and Powers, D. (eds.) Blowing Up the Brand: Critical Perspectives on Promotional Culture. New York: Peter Lang Publishers, 2010. 
  • Ebeling, Mary. Mediating uncertainties: Communicating the financial risks of nanotechnologies. Science Communication, 29 (3): 335-361, 2008.
  • Ebeling, Mary. Beyond advertising: The pharmaceutical industry's hidden marketing tactics. PR Watch, Feb 21, 2008.
  • Cooper, Geoff and Mary Ebeling. Epistemology, structure and urgency: The sociology of financial and scientific journalists. Sociological Research Online 12 (3). May 2007.