Ashley Shew


Ashley Shew

Assistant Professor


116 Lane Hall
Blacksburg, VA 24061




  • Philosophy of Technology
  • Technological Knowledge
  • Disability and Technology
  • Non-Human Animal Tool Use
  • Ethics and the Body

Professional Activities

  • Executive Board Member, Society for Philosophy and Technology
  • Departmental Representative CLAHS Diversity Committee
  • Steering Committee, Medicine and Society Minor
  • Faculty Advisor, Disability Alliance
  • Executive Committee, Interdisciplinary Graduate Education on Regenerative Medicine


  • PhD, 2011, Virginia Tech
  • MA, 2008, Virginia Tech
  • MS, 2007, Virginia Tech
  • BA, 2005, University of South Carolina

Research Interests

    Awards and Honors

    National Science Foundation CAREER Award, "Disability, Experience, and Technological Imagination," 2018-2023.

    Favorite Faculty, Housing and Residence Life, Virginia Tech, 2018.

    Certificate of Teaching Excellence, Virginia Tech College for Liberal Arts and Human Sciences, 2017

    Diversity Award, Virginia Tech College for Liberal Arts and Human Sciences, 2016

    Sally Bohland Award for Excellence in Access and Inclusion, 2016

    Selected Publications


    Animal Constructions and Technological Knowledge. Lanham: Lexington Books/Rowman & Littlefield, 2017.

    Edited Books

    Spaces for the Future: A Companion to Philosophy of Technology (co-edited with Joseph C. Pitt), Routledge, 2017.


    Shew, Ashley, and Keith Johnson. 2018. Companion Animals as Technologies in Biomedical Research, Perspectives on Science 26(3).

    Groen, C., McNair, L.D., Paretti, M.C., Simmons, D.R., and Shew, A. 2018. "Exploring Professional Identity Development in Undergraduate Civil Engineering Students Who Experience Disabilities." Proceedings of the 2018 American Society for Education Annual Conference and Exposition. Salt Lake City, UT: ASEE.

    Shew, Ashley. Animals in Philosophy of Technology in Joseph C. Pitt and Ashley Shew (eds.), Spaces for the Future: A Companion to Philosophy of Technology. Routledge, 2017.

    “Engines of Second Creation: Stories About Nanotechology,” Bulletin of Science, Technology & Society, Volume 33 (1–3), pages 21–27, 2013.

    Shew, Ashley. “Every Breath You Take”(on parenting and monitoring), in D.E. Wittkower and Lucinda Rush (eds.). Ender's Game and Philosophy, pages 34–142. Open Court, 2013.

    Shew, Ashley. “Nanotech's History: An Interesting, Interdisciplinary, Ideological Split.” Bulletin of Science, Technology & Society, Volume 28 (5), pages 390–399, 2008.    

    Shew, Ashley. “Nanotechnology’s Future: Considerations for the Professional” in Fritz Allhoff and     Patrick Lin (eds.), Nanotechnology & Society: Current and Emerging Ethical Issues, pages 127–146. Springer, 2008.

    Baird, Davis, and Ashley Shew. “Probing the History of Scanning Tunneling Microscopy,” in Davis Baird, Alfred Nordmann, and Joachim Schummer (eds.), Discovering the Nanoscale, pages 145–156. Amsterdam: IOS Press, 2004.  

    Additional Information

    My current research centers on technologies for walking and standing, techno-optimism, techno-ableism, and the lived experience of disability. More information related to my teaching and research can be found at