Centre for Health Promotion Research

The Centre for Health Promotion Research (CHPR) is one of the leading academic institutions for health promotion research in the UK.

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The Centre for Health Promotion Research is one of the leading academic institutions for health promotion research in the UK.

We aim to:

  • Maintain a broad and integrated programme of health promotion research which addresses local, national and international issues
  • Develop research capacity and support practice-based health promotion research; with a particular focus upon practice within communities
  • Develop collaborative research, locally, nationally and internationally, which advances the evidence base for health promotion
  • Disseminate and research widely through reports, journals, seminars, newsletters etc.; and to influence policy and practice via engagement with relevant organisations
  • Provide a forum for exchanging ideas on the principles and practice of health promotion research

Healthy communities

International students smiling on campus

We have a programme of research, postgraduate education and public engagement on the themes of community health, active citizenship and volunteering which focuses on what communities can contribute to health and how participation can be stimulated and sustained.

Health inequalities

girl and boy sat in student halls accommodation

We work directly with people and groups who are vulnerable, disadvantaged and at risk of experiencing health inequalities in a variety of ways.

Evidence and evaluation

Image of a male student in the library using a laptop with headphones on

Creation and appraisal of robust evidence has always been a strong theme in CHPR, with methodological development and knowledge transfer going hand in hand with our multidisciplinary approach.

We operate according to the following set of principles:

  • Working with an understanding of health as social and thus using the social model of health
  • Working as part of a social movement to tackle the social determinants of health in order to bring about greater social and health justice
  • Working within a framework that views health as political
  • Working in ways to promote both equality and equity

We use approaches that are:

  • Participatory - to facilitate inclusion, empowerment and capacity building
  • In partnership - to facilitate collaboration
  • Anti-oppressive and ethical – to foster equality and support change

We have been commissioned to conduct research and evaluation by organisations such as the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), the People’s Health Trust, the What Works Centre for Wellbeing, the Centre for Ageing Better, the Coop Foundation, Public Health England, NHS Health Scotland, Department of Health, Department for Transport, Local Government and the NIHR as well as third sector organisations, like Shelter, Hamara and the Jigsaw Visitors' Centre at HMP Leeds.

As a discipline, health promotion is inherently broad and multi-disciplinary and our research reflects this spectrum of activity. Although not an exhaustive list, members of the team have a wide range of expertise in areas such as: community health and well-being; empowerment; gender and health promotion; prison health; workplace health and well-being; healthy schools; physical activity; the health promotion workforce; global health and health inequalities.

Colleagues also have experience in supporting research that uses a wide range of methodological approaches, from systematic reviews to participatory methods.

The multi-disciplinary impact of CHPR is reflected in its contribution to two units and two case studies in the 2021 Research Excellence Framework (REF) and two case studies in the 2020 Knowledge Excellence Framework (KEF).


  • Community health and well-being
  • Empowerment
  • Gender and health promotion
  • Prison health
  • Workplace health and well-being
  • Healthy schools; physical activity
  • The health promotion workforce
  • Global health and health inequalities.

Moreover, staff have experience in supporting research that uses a wide range of methodological approaches, including participatory methods.


By combining the resources and knowledge of community organisations with those of our university, the CommUNIty initiative is finding new, more effective ways to improve health and reduce health inequalities in communities.

Aerial photo of the Leeds City Centre

Our research community

  • Tahir Touray – ‘People living with co-morbid diabetes and hypertension’
  • Mariya Tenebe – ‘Effects of Organisational Restructuring on employees’ well-being and performance in Nigeria’
  • Gemma Hookins – ‘Play therapy as a holistic healing approach in a hospital setting in the United Arab Emirates’
  • Emma Steadman  ‘A current, situated, explanatory theory for the practice of play therapy supervision’
  • Jenny Shaw – ‘The Culture of Learning: do student nurses in the UK feel that they experience intelligent kindness during their practice placements?’
  • Fiona Meth – ‘Tackling health inequalities amongst street sex workers –intersectionality and the role of decriminalisation: the Leeds Managed Approach as a case study’
  • Amanda Graham – ‘An Exploration of Occupational Therapy within Perinatal Mental Health Services: A Grounded Theory Study Director’
  • Paige Davies – ‘Care Satisfaction, Symptom Severity and Depression Following Obstetric Anal Sphincter Injuries: A Mixed Methods Approach’
  • Sally Brown  ‘Community Wellbeing: A study into the effects of yoga on community wellbeing in disadvantaged inner-city Leeds’
  • Bryony Walker  ‘Using Participatory Action Research to hear the views of adoptive parents and to cocreate the design of an adoptive parent led model of support’

  • Simon Rowlands – ‘How are National Health Service weight management services experienced by men? A qualitative study of mixed sex and male only groups’ (September 2015)
  • Nana Appiah-Agyekum ‘Primary health care in Ghana’ (September 2017)
  • Tomoko Zama – ‘Exploring workplace health through individual worker’s vulnerability, resilience and capability in Zambian mining industries’ (August 2018)
  • Kim Johnston – ‘Investigating how introducing new models of care within English health and social care have led to alterations in working practice and impacted on staff wellbeing’ (March 2020)
  • Tracy Race – ‘Hearing the Voice of the Child in Child Protection Processes’ (May 2020)
  • David Mercer – ‘Maintaining emotional resilience in social work practice: supporting critically reflective practice on the frontline’ (June 2020)
  • Elizabeth Allison – ‘A study of an NHS hospital chaplaincy service’ (July 2020)

Postgraduate study

Our research expertise is diverse and wide-ranging and has contributed to developing policy and practice in many areas. Our centre undertakes commissioned research and evaluation activity which not only contributes to the evidence-base, but directly feeds into teaching and learning activities.

Research degrees

As well as our taught programmes we also offer a range of postgraduate research degrees in the areas above, if you are interested please contact Dr James Woodhall - j.woodall@leedsbeckett.ac.uk.

  1. Partnerships

    CHPR staff work in partnership with national and international governmental and non-governmental organisations, health and social care professionals and other academic researchers to produce research that is timely and relevant. Professor Jane South is currently seconded to Public Health England as National Advisor for Communities.


  • Cross, R.M. and Warwick-Booth, L. (2018) Evaluating a gender-specific intensive intervention programme: young women's voices and experiences. Health Education Journal, March.
  • Cross, R.M. and Warwick-Booth, L. (2018) Neoliberal salvation through a gendered intervention: A critical analysis of vulnerable young women's talk. Alternative Routes: A Journal of Critical Social Research.
  • Southby, K. and Gamsu, M. (2018) Factors affecting general practice collaboration with voluntary and community sector organisations. Health & social care in the community, January.
  • Southby, K. and Robinson, O. (2017) Information, Advocacy and Signposting as a Low-Level Support for Adults with High-Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorder: An Example from the UK. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, October.
  • Southby, K. (2017) Reflecting on (the challenge of) conducting participatory research as a research-degree student.Research for All, January.
  • Southby, K. (2016) Barriers to non-residential respite care for adults with moderate to complex needs: A UK perspective. Journal of intellectual disabilities : JOID, July.


  • Warwick-Booth, L. and Cross, R.M. (2018) Global Health Studies A Social Determinants Perspective. Cambridge: Polity.
  • Warwick-Booth, L. (2013) Social Inequality. SAGE. – updated edition will be published 2018 – 2nd edition

Book Chapters

  • Warwick-Booth, L. and Cross, R. (2017) A delivery model of a gender-specific intervention approach – Lessons for policy makers. In: Nico, M. and Taru, M. eds. Youth Knowledge book # 21 “Needles in haystacks. Finding a way forward for cross-sectoral youth policy. Council of Europe, pp. 241-256

CONTACT - Professor Anne-Marie Bagnall