Dr Kris Southby, Senior Research Fellow

Dr Kris Southby

Senior Research Fellow

Kris is a Research Fellow in the Centre for Health Promotion Research. He has broad research interests around the role of the voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) sector in health and wellbeing.

Kris joined the Centre for Health Promotion Research in 2014. He worked for 
worked for the learning disability charity Mencap as an employment coordinator before this. 

Kris is involved in a all aspects of research across CHPR’s portfolio of work, including bid writing, data collection, data analysis, writing reports and outputs, and project management. Kris also supervises Masters and PhD student projects.

Kris' research broadly covers two areas. The first concerns the role of the VCSE in addressing health inequalities. The second concerns the experience of people with disabilities and ways of addressing the broad ranging and complex wellbeing needs of this group.

Kris' research generally uses qualitative or mixed methods to capture lived experience. He has experience of working with communities to develop participatory approaches to include those that might be excluded from more 'traditional' research designs. Kris is also experienced at doing rapid and systematic reviews of evidence. 

Some of the organisations that Kris has worked with on research are:

  • Mencap
  • What Works Wellbeing
  • New Economics Foundation
  • Co-op Foundation
  • Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
  • World Health Organisation Europe
  • Yorkshire & Humber Clinical Research Network
  • People's Health Trust

Research Interests

Kris is currently working with colleagues on a number of projects. These projects have led to a greater understanding of:

  • Why some communities experiencing socioeconomic disadvantage appear more resilient to mental health issues than expected
  • How VCSE organisations responded to the pandemic to keep supporting people
  • How and why VCSE organisations use sport to mitigate against the health and social inequalities that impact on children and young people (C&YP) in disadvantaged areas across England and Wales
Dr Kris Southby, Senior Research Fellow

Ask Me About

  1. Equality and inclusion
  2. Community
  3. Health
  4. Mental health
  5. Public health
  6. Volunteering
  7. Wellbeing

Selected Outputs

  • Woodward J; Southby K (2022) Chiles Webster Batson Commission on Sport and Low-Income Neighbourhoods [Online]. Street Games.

  • Hardoon D; South J; Southby K; Freeman C; Bagnall A-M; Pennington A; Corcoran R (2021) A guide to synthesising case studies [Online]. London: What Works Centre for Wellbeing.

    Available from: https://whatworkswellbeing.org/resources/case-study-synthesis-centre-guide/

  • Bagnall A; Raine G; Kinsella K; Southby K; Spoor C; South J; Giuntoli G (2016) Measuring Well-being Outcomes In Older People Receiving Help From The Age UK ‘Together for Health’ Initiative: A Social Return on Investment Analysis: Final Report [Online]. Leeds, UK: The Centre for Health Promotion Research, Institute for Health and Wellbeing, Leeds Beckett University.

  • Woodall JR; South J; Southby K; Kinsella K; May E; Bagnall A; Coan S (2016) Exploring the experiences and impacts of volunteer applicants for the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games [Online]. Glasgow Centre for Population Health (GCPH).

    Available from: http://www.gcph.co.uk/publications/617_exploring_the_experiences_and_impacts_of_glasgow_2014_volunteer_applicants

  • Bagnall A; Southby K; Mitchell B; South J (2015) BIBLIOGRAPHY AND MAP OF COMMUNITY-CENTRED INTERVENTIONS FOR HEALTH AND WELLBEING [Online]. Leeds Beckett University.

  • Southby K; Bidey T; Grimes D; Khor Z; South J; Bagnall A-M (In press) Together through tough times: A qualitative study of community resilience to protect against mental health issues in the UK. Journal of Public Health

  • Southby K; Coan S; Rushworth S; South J; Bagnall A-M; Lam T; Woodward J; Button D (2022) The contribution of peer research in evaluating complex public health interventions: examples from two UK community empowerment projects. BMC Public Health, 22 pp. 1-11.


  • Southby K; Keating F; Joseph S (2021) The Meanings of Mental Health Recovery for African and Caribbean Men in the UK. International Journal of Mens Social and Community Health, 4 (1), pp. e83-e95.


  • Southby K; Keating F; Joseph S (2021) The Meanings of Mental Health Recovery for African and Caribbean Men in the UK: An Intersectionalities Approach. International Journal of Men's Social and Community Health, 4 (1),


  • Southby K; South J; Bagnall A (2019) A rapid review of barriers to volunteering for potentially disadvantaged groups and implications for health inequalities. Voluntas: International Journal of Voluntary and Nonprofit Organizations, 30 (5), pp. 907-920.


  • Southby K (2019) An exploration and proposed taxonomy of leisure–befriending for adults with learning disabilities. British Journal of Learning Disabilities, 47 (4), pp. 223-232.


  • Southby K; Robinson O (2018) 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, 48 pp. 511-519.


  • Southby K (2017) Barriers to non-residential respite care for adults with moderate to complex needs: A UK perspective. Journal of intellectual disabilities : JOID, 21 (4), pp. 366-386.


  • Southby K (2013) Social inclusion through football fandom: opportunities for learning-disabled people. Sport in Society, 16 (10), pp. 1386-1403.