Community Wellbeing: About

People, Power & Place 

  • How do the places we live, and our participation in local decision-making, influence personal and communityProfessor Peter Kinderman wellbeing?
  • What does community wellbeing mean?
  • What can be done to improve wellbeing by voluntary organisations, businesses, local and central government?

These are some the questions that will be addressed by the communities evidence programme of the Wellbeing What Works Centre.

There is lots of evidence already out there, but it is dispersed and in different formats, from analysis of large-scale international surveys, to qualitative evaluations of local projects.  Very little of it is in a format that is usable by policy-makers or those working on frontline projects. And, whilst there is lots of evidence, there are still many gaps that need filling.

Summary Community Evidence Programme Voice of the User report – short

Community Voice of the user detailed report – long

In the first six months of the programme we will engage with a range of people whose work could be helped with wellbeing evidence and understand what kinds of questions they would like the evidence to help them answer. We’ll run a series of workshops across the UK, and conduct in-depth interviews. We’ll speak to local community groups to get a sense of what they feel is important to community wellbeing.  By December we’ll have identified at least five key questions to get our teeth into, which we will then tackle through systematic reviews of existing evidence and new analysis of survey data.

Throughout the programme, we’ll bring researchers and evidence users together, and produce outputs which are usable, relevant and robust.

Lead investigator

Peter Kinderman is professor of Clinical Psychology and Head of the Institute of Psychology, Health and Society at the University of Liverpool. His research interests are in psychological processes underpinning well-being and mental health, and in particular psychotic phenomena such as delusions and hallucinations. He has published widely on the role of psychological factors as mediators between biological, social and circumstantial factors in mental health and wellbeing. He is also interested in the application of such psychological science to public policy. He was twice elected Chair of the British Psychological Society Division of Clinical Psychology; from 2004 to 2005, and again from 2010-2011. In that role, he worked with the UK Department of Health, the BBC, the Health Professions Council, the European Union Fundamental Rights Agency and the UK Office for National Statistics, amongst others. He has recently launched a free, online, open-access course exploring our understanding of mental health and wellbeing and published ‘A Prescription for Psychiatry’, which presents his vision for the future of mental health services. Professor Kinderman has been elected to serve as President of the British Psychological Society for 2016-17. You can follow him on Twitter as @peterkinderman. 

I’m thrilled to lead the communities evidence programme of the Wellbeing What Works Centre.  It was four years ago that the Office for National Statistics began measuring wellbeing, at the behest of the Prime Minister.  Now it’s time to start using that data to really understand what can be done to improve wellbeing for everyone in the UK.”

Co-investigaors

Professor Rhiannon Corcoran University of Liverpool IPHS and Heseltine Institute Professor Sarah Curtis Durham University Dept of Geography
Professor Rumona Dickson University of Liverpool IPHS Professor Sarah Atkinson Durham University Dept of Geography
Professor John Brazier University of Sheffield School of Health and Related Research Dr Roger Green Goldsmiths College STaCS

Andy Pennington University of Liverpool

Dr Tessa Peasgood University of Sheffield School of Health and Related Research Sam Wren-Lewis Happy City
Dr Suzy Paisley University of Sheffield School of Health and Related Research Adrian Nolan and Dr. Jenny Rouse Centre for Local Economies
Professor Ian Bache University of Sheffield Dept of Politics Nicola Bacon Social Life Ltd
Professor Jane South Leeds Beckett University Faculty of Health & Social Sciences Steve Clare Locality
Dr Anne-Marie Bagnall Leeds Beckett University Faculty of Health & Social Sciences Saamah Abdallah New Economics Foundation
Mr Rob Newton Leeds Beckett University Faculty of Health & Social Sciences Annie Quick New Economics Foundation