- Deputy Director, Institute of Health and Wellbeing / Interdisciplinary Research Professor, Professor (Institute of Health and Wellbeing Social Sciences)
- Deputy Director of Institute of Health and Wellbeing (Institute of Health and Wellbeing)
- Associate (School of Medicine, Dentistry and Nursing)
My research has focused on helping people manage and maintain their health, reduce risk of ill health and manage their symptoms and illnesses. This has encompassed descriptive studies of how people are currently managing, their views and perceptions as well as new approaches to helping them manage better (such as information and support to do things differently if they need to). I am also interested in policy and programme evaluation, in evaluation methodologies and interdisciplinary approches to the design and evaluation of complex interventions and programmes.
This means that my work covers organisational and individual approaches to supporting people in all social positions to: live healthily and reduce risk of illness; manage multiple conditions, particularly long term conditions; consult early with symptoms that might be cancer; enable health and wellbeing in later life; and self-manage illness. I am also committed to knowledge exchange and to working with people, practitioners and policy makers to support the use of research to improve health and illness.
Recent projects include investigation of how information based on personal experiences is used and incorporated into health information resources; how primary care can support people to live well with multimorbidity; the evaluation of a gender sensitive weight management programme for men run through the Scottish Premier League (Football Fans in Training); and developing accessible patient reported outcome measures for use in quality improvement.
How do people with chronic conditions and their healthcare providers negotiate the self-management imperative?
Australian Research Council, 2015-2017, led by Lorraine Smith and Karen Willis
Despite numerous self-management programs, significant funding for chronic disease management, and training healthcare providers (HCPs) in best practice, the fact remains that medically driven solutions do not work for people who are living with chronic conditions. Our research answers the question: How are self-management goals negotiated and enacted between people with chronic conditions and their healthcare providers?
The study aims to:
- Show how interactions between people who live with a chronic condition, and their HCPs, shape self-management goals and engagement with self-management support;
- Provide explanations for difference in perspectives about goals between people with a chronic condition and HCPs;
- Contribute to and extend goal theory as it relates to healthcare settings; and
- Consider the implications of interactions about self-management goals in order to propose testable practice solutions and recommendations for policy.
NHS Health Scotland; August 2014-March 2017, led by Sally Wyke and Stewart Mercer.
The Links Worker Programme is a Scottish Government funded programme which aims to increase access to support for people living in the most deprived areas of Scotland. The Links Worker Programme uses a ‘social prescribing’ model (where patients are supported to access non-medical support and resources available in their communities), and a ‘Links Approach’, which engages the entire primary care team in developing the capacity to support people to live well in their community through enabling better access to information, knowledge, skills, relationships and resources. The Programme is being delivered as a partnership between the Health and Social Care Alliance Scotland (The Alliance) and General Practitioners (GPs) at the Deep End. An evaluation of the Programme, commissioned by NHS Health Scotland, is being undertaken by the University of Glasgow, Institute of Health and Wellbeing.
Long term weight loss trajectories in participants in a randomised controlled trial of a weight management and healthy lifestyle programme for men delivered through professional football clubs: the Football Fans in Training follow up.
National Institute for Health Research Public Health Programme, 2015-2016, Led by Cindy Gray
We developed and evaluated the highly successful Football Fans in Training (FFIT) programme to help overweight make lasting improvements to their weight, physical activity and diet. Our randomised controlled trial, also funded by NIHR Public Health Programme, showed it to be very successful; men were able to maintain weight loss, and changes to their physical activity and eating habits 12 months after baseline measurement. In this study we are following up men who started the programme in 2011 and those who started it in 2012 to see if the changes they had made are sustained 3.5 and 2.5 years after baseline measurement.
Social innovation to improve physical activity and sedentary behaviour through elite European football clubs: European Fans in Training (EuroFIT).
European Commission FP7, grant agreement no: 602170, 2013-2018
The goal of EuroFIT is to harness the ‘love of the game’ to engage football fans in health-promoting lifestyle changes through their loyalty and attachment to their clubs. EuroFIT will engage men through their connection with their clubs to make sustainable improvements in their diet, activity, and physical fitness. EuroFIT will achieve its goal by bringing together fans, professional football clubs, and public health experts to tackle the problem of how to engage inactive men in positive lifestyle changes. Together, this unique team will develop tailored lifestyle programmes that will encourage sustainable changes in diet, physical activity and sedentary time. Integrating two novel technologies – SitFIT & MatchFIT – the project will create a new lifestyle change programme, EuroFIT, to be delivered in football club grounds by club coaches. The project has been designed to allow for widespread replication, meaning that its success can be reproduced in different countries, communities and settings. Ultimately, EuroFIT will create a healthier Europe.
Medical Research Council 2013-2016, led by Dawn Skelton
Regardless of level of physical activity, sitting/lying throughout the day can increase risk of poor physical and mental health. Older adults appear to spend a larger proportion of their time sitting or sedentary compared with younger people, but changing that needs a detailed understanding of why older people sit so much and what they are doing when they sit. The work undertaken at University of Glasgow, in collaboration with colleagues from the Physical Activity and Health Research Centre at the University of Edinburgh, involves a qualitative exploration of older adults' perceptions and understandings of sedentary behaviour.
Can a football-based weight management/physical activity/healthy living programme be adapted for delivery in secure institutional settings to support at-risk groups in positive, sustainable behavioural change?
Chief Scientist Office, 2012-2014, led by Kate Hunt and Cindy Gray
Working together to support active living and well being (ActWell) in the health promoting health service - feasibility trial to reduce breast cancer risk factors.
Chief Scientist Office, 2012-2014, led by Annie Anderson, University of Dundee
Football Fans in Training (FFIT): a randomized controlled trial of a gender-sensitive weight loss and healthy living programme delivered to men aged 35-65 by Scottish Premier League football clubs.
NIHR Public Health Research Programme, 2011-2013
Examining the role of patients' experiences as a resource for choice and decision-making in health care
National Institute for Health Research Programme Grant, 2010-2015, led by Sue Ziebland, University of Oxford
Patient Reported Outcome Measures for NHS quality improvement with particular reference to low literacy and communication impaired populations
Technology Strategy Board Knowledge Transfer Partnerships, 2010-2012
I have supervised 17 PhD students, 11 to completion so far.
Current supervision areas
- Complex interventions to improve health and wellbeing
- Supporting people with multiple long term conditions
- Managing health and illness in the context of everyday life
Goal setting in palliative care. Is it relevant?
Strathcarron Hospice and University of Stirling, Part-time, University of Stirling. 2007 –
Goal setting in community based stroke rehabilitation: A feasibility and acceptability study of implementing a goal setting and action planning practice framework
CSO Doctoral Fellowship, Part-time, University of Stirling. 2011 –
Supported Self Care for Asthma – Development and Evaluation of an Online Interactive Resource
Scottish Clinical Academic Fellow Training Scheme. Chief Scientist Office. 2011 –
The Mental Health and Wellbeing of Online Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Young People
University of Glasgow Scholarship. 2011 –
Football Fans in Training Objective measurement of physical activity and effect on families’ food choices
MRC Social and Public Health Sciences Studentship. 2011 –
Can Mindfulness help emotion management in young offenders?
Inst for Health and Wellbeing,
College of Social Sciences,
Room 204 25-28 Bute Gardens,