Dr Emma Lawlor
- Research Associate (Cardiovascular & Metabolic Health)
- Associate (School of Social & Political Sciences)
Emma’s research focuses on developing and evaluating active travel interventions, using qualitative methods to understand how communities experience the environment, and exploring stakeholders’ experiences of implementing population health interventions.
Emma currently is a Research Associate on the GALLANT project (Glasgow as a Living Lab Accelerating Novel Transformation) (September 2022 to current) leading the active travel work package. Examples of roles includes working with stakeholders and communities to co-develop locally appropriate active travel interventions, developing and validating new assessment tools and undertaking a randomised controlled trial to assess the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of active travel interventions within communities.
Before joining the University of Glasgow, Emma worked as a Research Associate at the MRC Epidemiology Unit, University of Cambridge from 2017 to 2022. Her research mainly focused on evaluating population-level environment and policy interventions related to active travel and health promoting environments. Examples include an ethnographic study of how families experience their school journeys in new towns, interviews and a systematic review on policy processes involved in planning and implementing environmental active travel interventions, analysis of parliamentary debates regarding the soft drinks industry levy, and an evaluation of school streets scheme. She was also involved in conducting numerous systematic reviews, including a Public Health England rapid evidence review on integration of physical activity promotion in healthcare services. She also worked as a Research Associate in the Prevention of Diabetes and Related Metabolic Disorders in High Risk Groups research programme developing and evaluating weight management interventions.
In addition to her Glasgow role, Emma works as a Research Associate at the University of Westminster (March 2022 to current) evaluating the low traffic neighbourhood schemes in London. This involves walk along interviews with residents regarding their experiences of the living within and near these schemes. She is also involved in a process evaluation of the Department for Transport Active Travel Fund.
Emma is activity involved in the early career committee of the International Society of Behavioural Nutrition and Physical Activity, being a co-chair of the webinar and workshop sub-committee. She is a co-investigator on the study “Challenges, needs and opportunities for emerging behavioural nutrition and physical activity researchers: in (post-)pandemic times” with other committee members. She is also on the editorial board of the journal ‘Active Travel Studies’.
Emma was awarded a BSc (Hons) in Occupational Therapy from the University of Ulster and an MSc in Public Health from Queen’s University Belfast. Emma completed her PhD in 2018 at the Centre for Public Health, Queen’s University Belfast, focusing on physical activity interventions in deprived communities.