Leading social scientists meet to plan Health of People report

November 30, 2015

Leading social science academics and practitioners met earlier this month for the first working group session of the Campaign’s next major report, The Health of People, due to be released in summer 2016.

They met at the Academy and its Campaign’s new offices at 33 Finsbury Square to begin work on the report, which will outline the vital role of social science research and practice in contributing to health and addressing specific issues facing the NHS and UK healthcare more broadly.

The meeting set to lay out the scope, objectives and structure of the report, and looked at how to ensure diversity and breadth of representation across the social sciences and public health sector.

The working group brings together a range of different academic disciplines and practitioner expertise, as well as different roles in relation to prevention and delivery of health care. Members are joined by David Walker, the Campaign’s Head of Policy, who will draft the text. Susan Michie, Professor of Health Psychology at University College London, chairs the working group.

The report will contain case studies and recommendations into how social science activities can reduce demand for expensive health intervention, offer better return on investment, and improve delivery of health care. It is intended to have direct appeal to MPs, policy-makers, government leaders, health professionals and service users, media, the NHS and civil society groups.

The report’s predecessor, the Business of People, launched in February of this year and set out how social science can help guide government in key policy areas, including the economy, demographic change and migration to and from the UK.

The working group members are (November 2015):

  • Professor Susan Michie, Director, Centre for Behaviour Change, University College London (chair)Professor Gwyn Bevan, Director of the MSc in Public Management and Governance, London School of Economics
  • Professor Rona Campbell, Centre for Public Health Research, University of Bristol
  • Professor Joanna Coast, Professor in the Economics of Health and Care, University of Bristol
  • Dr Simon Christmas, independent social researcher
  • Professor Kevin Fenton, National Director for Health and Wellbeing, Public Health England
  • Professor Robbie Foy, Professor of Primary Care, Leeds Institute of Health Science
  • Professor Jon Glasby, Head of the School of Social Policy, University of Birmingham
  • Dr Ann Hoskins, Director of Children, Young People and Families, Public Health England
  • Professor Marie Johnston, Professor of Health Psychology, University of Aberdeen
  • Professor Mike Kelly, Centre for Science and Technology, University of Cambridge
  • Professor Lawrence King, Professor of Political Economy and Sociology, University of Cambridge
  • Professor Theresa Marteau, Director, Behaviour and Health Research Unit, University of Cambridge
  • Professor Matt Sutton, Professor of Health Economics, University of Manchester
  • Professor Robert West, Director of Tobacco Studies at the Cancer Research UK Health Behaviour Research Centre, University College London
  • Tim Whitaker, Director of Communications, Hanover Housing Association
  • Professor Sally Wyke, Deputy Director, Institute of Health and Wellbeing, University of Glasgow
  • Dr Dagmar Zeuner, Director of Public Health, London Borough of Richmond

The working group meeting was the first of three scheduled to plan the report’s content, purview and delivery.

The next meeting of the working group will be held in January.