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Moving beyond local practice: Reconfiguring the adoption of a breast cancer diagnostic technology


  • Maniatopoulos, Gregory
  • Procter, Rob
  • Llewellyn, Sue
  • Harvey, Gill
  • Boyd, Alan


This paper explores the ways in which technological innovation becomes adopted and incorporated into healthcare practice. Drawing upon the notion of ‘field of practices’, we examine how adoption is subject to spatially and temporally distributed reconfigurations across a multi-level set of practices, ranging from the policy level to the micro-level setting of individual action. The empirical backdrop is provided by a case study of the adoption of Breast Lymph Node Assay (BLNA), a diagnostic technology innovation for the treatment of breast cancer patients. Our aim is to contribute to the development of a more comprehensive analysis of the processes surrounding the adoption and incorporation of complex healthcare technologies into routine practice.

Suggested Citation

  • Maniatopoulos, Gregory & Procter, Rob & Llewellyn, Sue & Harvey, Gill & Boyd, Alan, 2015. "Moving beyond local practice: Reconfiguring the adoption of a breast cancer diagnostic technology," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 131(C), pages 98-106.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:131:y:2015:i:c:p:98-106
    DOI: 10.1016/j.socscimed.2015.02.036

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Llewellyn, Sue & Northcott, Deryl, 2005. "The average hospital," Accounting, Organizations and Society, Elsevier, vol. 30(6), pages 555-583, August.
    2. Geels, Frank W., 2010. "Ontologies, socio-technical transitions (to sustainability), and the multi-level perspective," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(4), pages 495-510, May.
    3. Graeme Salaman, 2002. "Managers' Theories About the Process of Innovation," Journal of Management Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 39(2), pages 147-165, March.
    4. Hendy, Jane & Barlow, James, 2012. "The role of the organizational champion in achieving health system change," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 74(3), pages 348-355.
    5. Geels, Frank W., 2002. "Technological transitions as evolutionary reconfiguration processes: a multi-level perspective and a case-study," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 31(8-9), pages 1257-1274, December.
    6. May, Carl, 2013. "Agency and implementation: Understanding the embedding of healthcare innovations in practice," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 78(C), pages 26-33.
    7. ., 1998. "Technological Change," Chapters,in: The Elgar Companion to Classical Economics, chapter 127 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    8. Nicolini, Davide, 2006. "The work to make telemedicine work: A social and articulative view," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 62(11), pages 2754-2767, June.
    9. Wanda J. Orlikowski, 2010. "The sociomateriality of organisational life: considering technology in management research," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 34(1), pages 125-141, January.
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