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Matt Spencer (Associate Professor)

Matt Spencer (Associate Professor)

My research sits at the intersection between Anthropology, Science & Technology Studies, and Cyber Security. Most broadly, I am interested in understanding the relations between knowledge and digital technologies.

My research falls into two main areas:

Trust and Cyber Security

I am interested in examining the role of trust in cyber security. Cyber security is a "more than technical" challenge, and one of increasing relevance given our contemporary society is marked by widespread dependencies on digital technologies to ensure continued correct functioning of critical infrastructures. My current research examines the processes through which trust is built and used among cyber security practitioners, for example in the development and use of evaluative frameworks, through the rituals of corporate governance, and in efforts to foster "security cultures".

See the project page for Scaling Trust: An Anthropology of Cyber Security

Models and Simulations

Many fields of science and engineering have been revolutionised by the rise of new digital techniques for simulating systems. Working and reasoning with digital materials such a software, data and visualisations presents a distinctive set of challenges for practitioners, particularly where the software systems involved are large and complex. I conducted fieldwork with a research group in London to examine the forms of reasoning and representation in computational science (this was the basis for my PhD, Reason and Representation in Scientific Simulation)

Academic Profile

I joined CIM in June 2017. I am an Assistant Professor at CIM and an Affiliate of Warwick Manufacturing Group's Cyber Security Centre. I gained my PhD in Cultural Studies from Goldsmiths, University of London in 2013. Prior to that I studied Social Anthropology at the University of Cambridge.

In addition to my academic research, I have worked in IT and digital technology delivery, across a number of areas, including web, mobile, e-learning and information systems, for clients in media, transport and public sectors.

I am a UKRI Future Leaders Fellow, and an Expert Fellow in the EPSRC SPRITE+ network.

Research Students

I am interested in hearing from potential doctoral students with an interest in any of the areas mentioned above.

Selected Publications

Spencer, M. 2021. 'Creative Malfunction: Finding Fault with Rowhammer.' Computational Culture: A Journal of Software Studies, 8

Spencer, M. 2019. 'The Difference a Method Makes: Methods as Epistemic Objects in Computational Science.' Distinktion: Journal of Social Theory

Spencer, M. 2015. ‘Brittleness and Bureaucracy: Software as a Material for Science.’ Perspectives on Science 23.4: 466-484

Spencer, M. 2013. 'Doing Science Justice: Speculative Materialism and the Facticity of Research'. Symploke 21.1: 163-177

Spencer, M 2012. 'Trouble with Images in Computational Physics'. Spontaneous Generations 6.1: 34-42

Spencer, M. 2012. 'Image and Practice: Visualisation in Computational Fluid Dynamics Research'. Interdisciplinary Science Reviews. 37.1: 96-111

Matt Spencer (Assistant Professor)


Centre for Interdisciplinary Methodologies
B0.26 Social Sciences
University of Warwick

Email: M dot Spencer dot 1 at warwick dot ac dot uk