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Sociology Research


Dr Marcin W. Smietana is a research associate in the Reproductive Sociology Research Group (ReproSoc). Within ReproSoc’s Wellcome Trust funded collaborative grant ‘Changing In/Fertilities’, Marcin coordinates the work package on the changing fertility behaviours and perceptions among LGBTQ+ people. His current research involves qualitative interviews with British gay men who have pursued altruistic surrogacy in the UK or compensated surrogacy overseas. 

This follows on from Marcin's previous EU funded study (based at UC Berkeley and Cambridge) on gay men who form families through transnational and domestic surrogacy in the US, as well as from his PhD thesis on Spanish gay fathers through transnational adoption and surrogacy (University of Barcelona, and AFIN-Autonomus University of Barcelona). 

With Prof. Charis Thompson (LSE), Marcin co-edited the special issue of Reproductive BioMedicine & Society Online (Nov. 2018) ‘Making Families: Transnational Surrogacy, Queer Kinship and Reproductive Justice,’ where the perspectives of queer reproductions are put into conversation with those of stratified reproduction and reproductive justice. Currently, Marcin is writing up a book on gay men’s reproductive decision-making and the thinkability of gay family projects in the context of transnational reproduction.  

In his research, Marcin also looked at queer resistance to undemocratic nationalisms, sparked by his early work in Poland and continued in the 2021 CRASSH and lgbtQ+ @cam conference project with Hakan Sandal-Wilson on 'Queering Authoritarianisms: Conflict, Resistance and Coloniality'. Marcin's upcoming projects also turn towards relationships between species in human and nonhuman reproduction, queer ecologies and critical animal studies.
Please see the full research group profile and list of publications for Dr Marcin W. Smietana here. 




Marcin teaches on Soc 4 (Concepts and Arguments in Sociology), Soc 10 (Sociology of Gender), Soc 13 (Sociology of Health and Illness), MPhil in the Sociology of Reproduction, and MPhil in Medicine, Health & Society. He has also been working with undergrad, MPhil and PhD students as a dissertation supervisor, co-supervisor and advisor on topics such as LGBTQ+ reproduction, gueer kinships, sexuality education, reproductive technologies, as well as species and veganism.

Graduate supervision availability and interests:

Marcin is possibly available for undergrad supervision (following supervision within the URAP and Mellon Mays programmes at UC Berkeley), for projects or research apprentices related to his current postdoc project. Possible related subjects: transnational surrogacy, assisted reproduction, gay parenting, family & kinship, the body and reproductive justice, science & technology, biopolitics.

Key Publications - Books

Smietana, Marcin & Thompson, Charis (eds.) 2018. ‘Making Families: Transnational Surrogacy, Queer Kinship, and Reproductive Justice’. Special Issue of Reproductive Biomedicine & Society Online, Vol. 7, Nov. 2018. [open access]

Slany K., Kowalska B., & Smietana M., eds. (2005) Homoseksualizm: Perspektywa interdyscyplinarna. Kraków: Nomos.

Key Publications - Book Chapters

Smietana, Marcin (2018). «Mes pères d’intention et moi sommes amis sur Facebook» : comment des femmes porteuses et des pères gais gèrent les tensions entre don et échange marchand aux États-Unis. In: Isabel Côté, Kevin Lavoie & Jerome Courduriès (eds.) Perspectives internationales sur la gestation pour autrui: Expériences des personnes concernées et contextes d’action, pp. 225-247. Presses de l’Université du Québec.

Smietana, M. (in press, 2016). ‘Families like we’d always known’? Spanish gay fathers’ normalization narratives in transnational surrogacy. In: M. Lie, & N. Lykke (eds.) Assisted Reproduction across Borders: Feminist Perspectives on Normalizations, Disruptions and Transmissions. Routledge. 

Smietana, M., Jennings, S., Herbrand, C., & Golombok, S. (2014). Family relationships in gay father families with young children in Belgium, Spain and the United Kingdom. In: T. Freeman, F. Ebtehaj, S. Graham, & M. Richards M. (eds.) Relatedness in Assisted Reproduction: Families, Origins and Identities, pp. 192-211. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 

Smietana, M. (2013). Las paternidades y maternidades en las familias de padres gays creadas por gestación subrogada. In: J. Bestard, C. López, & D. Marre (eds.) Procreación, maternidades y crianza en transformación, pp. 203-220. Barcelona: Bellaterra. 

Smietana, M. (2011). Matczyni ojcowie? Męskość i kobiecość w hiszpańskich rodzinach gejów. In: E. Ciaputa, & K. Wojnicka (eds.) Karuzela z mężczyznami: Kategorie męskości w polskich badaniach społecznych. Kraków: Impuls. 

Key Publications - Journal Articles

Smietana, Marcin; Rudrappa, Sharmila and Weis, Christina. 2021. Moral frameworks of commercial surrogacy within the US, India and Russia. Sexual and Reproductive Health Matters, 29(1): 1-17.

Smietana, Marcin (2019) ‘Procreative consciousness in a global market: Gay men’s paths to surrogacy in the US,’ In: Marcin Smietana & Charis Thompson (eds.) ‘Making Families: Transnational Surrogacy, Queer Kinship, and Reproductive Justice’. Special Issue of Reproductive BioMedicine and Society, vol. 7 Nov. 2018, pp. 1-160 [open access]

Smietana, Marcin; Thompson, Charis & Twine, France Winddance (2018). Introduction: Making and Breaking Families: Reading Queer Reproductions, Stratified Reproduction and Reproductive Justice Together. In: Marcin Smietana & Charis Thompson (eds.) 2018. ‘Making Families: Transnational Surrogacy, Queer Kinship, and Reproductive Justice’. Special Issue of Reproductive Biomedicine & Society Online,  vol. 7 Nov. 2018, pp. 1-160, [open access]

Smietana, Marcin & Thompson, Charis (eds.) 2018. ‘Making Families: Transnational Surrogacy, Queer Kinship, and Reproductive Justice’. Special Issue of Reproductive Biomedicine & Society Online, Vol. 7, Nov. 2018. [open access]

Smietana, Marcin (2017). Affective de-commodifying, economic de-kinning: Surrogates’ and gay fathers’ narratives in U.S. surrogacy. In: Charlotte Faircloth, & Zeynep Gurtin. ‘Making Parents: Reproductive Technologies and Parenting Culture across Borders’ Special Issue of Sociological Research Online 22(2): 6. DOI: 10.5153/sro.4312

Grants and Projects

Smietana, M. (PI) and Franklin, S (SD). SurrogARTs Project. European Commission (EC) Marie Curie Award (2013-2016): €239,282

Smietana, M. Government of Catalonia and European Social Fund, ‘Family-based affirmative action? Subversion and resilience strategies of gay father families’ (FI: Formació de Personal Investigador - Training of Research Staff). 1 January 2007- 31 December 2010, 50.000 EUR. 

Smietana, M. Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness, ‘Adoptions and fosterages in Spain: Tracing challenges, opportunities and problems in the social and family lives of children and adolescents’ (coordinated R+D research group project). 1 January 2013 – 31 December 2015. 

Media Articles

Research Groups & Affiliations

Job Title:
Research Associate, Marie Curie postdoctoral fellow at ReproSoc