Working together to tackle inequalities
and improve the health of the public

Vacancies and Placements

A System Dynamics Approach to the Economic Drivers of Health and Wellbeing

Tax-free stipend of at least £15,285 per annum and a research/training/conference allowance of at least £1,300 per annum (UK resident only).

At the MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit, University of Glasgow, we are looking to develop the next generation of highly skilled researchers. Our Unit has a particular focus on developing and using cutting-edge methods to understand how social, behavioural, economic, political and environmental factors influence health and wellbeing.

The current studentship is aligned to the work of the cross-university and policy Systems science in Public Health and Health Economics research (SIPHER) Consortium, and will benefit from the academic and practice networks this brings. The primary supervisor will be Professor Petra Meier, with other members of the Unit or Consortium as appropriate to the successful candidate’s interests and skills.

The Scottish Government, a SIPHER policy partner, is one of a group of Wellbeing Economy Governments, committed to move towards a robust, resilient wellbeing economy. This could potentially include a diverse range of actions and outcomes,  and different stakeholders may have different ideas about what a wellbeing economy should look like, resulting in conflict about the prioritisation, scale of investment, overall benefits and harms of specific actions, and making decision-making difficult. This three-year PhD project will take a public health systems perspective and use participatory modelling and system dynamics modelling to provide insight into the likely synergies and trade-offs involved with different options. You will have a first degree in a relevant, quantitative discipline, as well as a Masters degree (or equivalent experience) that has provided you with relevant modelling expertise (e.g. economics, operational research, computer science, transport, sustainability, infectious disease, population health science).

For further information about the studentship, including how to apply, please see

PhD Studentship

Due to uncertainty surrounding the impact of Covid-19 we have paused recruitment to this PhD Studentship. We will provide an update as soon as we have more information on when this opportunity may be re-opened. In the mean time if you would like an informal conversation about the post please contact Aki or Robin.

Aggregating multi-domain wellbeing across individuals

This PhD studentship is offered as part of the SIPHER Consortium.  Preventing ill health related to the “social determinants of health” requires well-coordinated policies across many sectors.  SIPHER is a major investment by the UK Prevention Research Partnership, which brings together scientists across six universities, three government partners at local, regional and national level, and ten practice partner organisations.  SIPHER will deliver novel evidence of the costs and benefits of the complex, interlinked and long-term consequences of policy decisions.

The PhD will be part of Work Stream 6 of the SIPHER consortium.  This Work Stream concerns social valuations of cross-sectoral outcomes and equity implications, to provide insight into how people value different policy outcomes (e.g. increased income versus improved health) and different distributions of outcomes (increased total income versus increased income inequality).

More Information and How to Apply

For an informal conversation about this opportunity please contact Aki Tsuchiya () or Robin Purshouse ().

Closing Date: To Be Confirmed

We are happy to discuss potential research visits/placements, hear from prospective PhD students or from researchers with an interest in social determinants and whole-systems policy design.who would like to get involved in SIPHER research.

We are always keen to develop new links with interested research centres, local and national governments, as well as health- and social justice-focused charities and interest groups. We want to ensure our new methods and findings are helpful to everyone who may use them. Please get in touch!

Please contact Consortium Directors
Professor Petra Meier
Professor Robin Purshouse