Dr Sarah Barry

Strathclyde Chancellor's Fellow

Mathematics and Statistics

Personal statement

I am a Chancellor's Fellow in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics. I have over 15 years of experience as a biostatistician working on clinical trials, complex interventions, observational studies and linkage of routinely collected datasets, using complex statistical methods.  I have been involved in studies from conception to completion, with a key role in design, analysis and interpretation.

My work covers a wide range of disciplines in health and wellbeing.  I am particularly interested in the relationship between physical and mental health and interventions that take a holistic approach to both.  I have a specific interest in perinatal and early years research.

From a statistical point of view I am interested in methods to analyse longitudinal and spatial data.  I am particularly interested in using routinely collected data to answer important public health questions.

I am passionate about interpretation and communication of statistics, particularly to people with no background in statistics.  As a statistician I believe I have a responsibility to ensure that my work is easily intelligible and that it has an impact in the real world.


Has expertise in:

    I have a strong record in design, conduct and analysis of clinical trials, epidemiological studies, complex interventions and record linkage studies.  I have developed and employed a broad range of complex statistical methodology for medical applications.  I have worked in a wide range of medical areas, including cancer, cardiovascular disease, epilepsy, schizophrenia, depression and numerous others.  I have worked with complex, large datasets and have particular experience using nationally collected datasets, such as hospital admissions and prescriptions data.

    I am the statistical expert member of an NHS Ethics Committee, which gives me great insight into the patients' views on clinical studies.  This informs my approach to study design and ensures that the studies I am involved in are fully patient-oriented.

    I am one of the academic statistical experts on the Scottish Government Technical Advisory Group on Resource Allocation (TAGRA) Morbidity and Life Circumstances subgroup, which assessed the formula used to allocated funding to NHS boards in Scotland in the most recent update, and continues to review it annually.  This work had, and continues to have, enormous impact on how healthcare is distributed in Scotland, ensuring that those who need it most have the easiest access.

    I am an Editorial Board Member of Nature Scientific Reports and am statistical reviewer for a number of journals.

    I am passionate about communication of statistics and keen to promote understanding of statistics in any area of application.


Feasibility study of peer-led and school-based social network Intervention (STASH) to promote adolescent sexual health
Mitchell Kirstin R, Purcell Carrie, Simpson Sharon A, Broccatelli Chiara, Bailey Julia V, Barry Sarah JE, Elliott Lawrie, Forsyth Ross, Hunter Rachael, McCann Mark, McDaid Lisa, Wetherall Kirsty, Moore Laurence
Pilot and Feasibility Studies Vol 7 (2021)
Associations between significant head injury and persisting disability and violent crime in women in prison in Scotland, UK : a cross-sectional study
McMillan Tom M, Aslam Hira, Crowe Eimear, Seddon Eleanor, Barry Sarah JE
Lancet Psychiatry Vol 8, pp. 512-520 (2021)
Invasive versus medically managed acute coronary syndromes with prior bypass (CABG-ACS) : insights into the registry versus randomised trial populations
Lee Matthew M Y, Petrie Mark C, Rocchiccioli Paul, Simpson Joanne, Jackson Colette E, Corcoran David S, Mangion Kenneth, Brown Ammani, Cialdella Pio, Sidik Novalia P, McEntegart Margaret B, Shaukat Aadil, Rae Alan P, Hood Stuart H M, Peat Eileen E, Findlay Iain N, Murphy Clare L, Cormack Alistair J, Bukov Nikolay B, Balachandran Kanarath P, Ford Ian, Wu Olivia, McConnachie Alex, Barry Sarah J E, Berry Colin
BMJ Open Heart Vol 8 (2021)
A peer-led intervention to promote sexual health in secondary schools : the STASH feasibility study
Mitchell Kirstin R, Purcell Carrie, Forsyth Ross, Barry Sarah, Hunter Rachael, Simpson Sharon A, McDaid Lisa, Elliot Lawrie, McCann Mark, Wetherall Kirsty, Broccatelli Chiara, Bailey Julia V, Moore Laurence
Public Health Research Vol 8, pp. 1-151 (2020)
Does prehabilitation modify muscle mass in patients with rectal cancer undergoing neoadjuvant therapy? A subanalysis from the REx randomised controlled trial
Moug S J, Barry S JE, Maguire S, Johns N, Dolan D, Steele R J C, Buchan C, Mackay G, Anderson A S, Mutrie N
Techniques in Coloproctology Vol 24, pp. 959-964 (2020)
Invasive versus medical management in patients with prior coronary artery bypass surgery with a non-ST segment elevation acute coronary syndrome : a pilot randomized controlled trial
Lee Matthew MY, Petrie Mark C, Rocchiccioli Paul, Simpson Joanne, Jackson Colette E, Corcoran David S, Mangion Kenneth, Brown Ammani, Cialdella Pio, Sidik Novalia P, McEntegart Margaret B, Shaukat Aadil, Rae Alan P, Hood Stuart HM, Peat Eileen E, Findlay Iain N, Murphy Clare L, Cormack Alistair J, Bukov Nikolay B, Balachandran Kanarath P, Oldroyd Keith G, Ford Ian, Wu Olivia, McConnachie Alex, Barry Sarah JE, Berry Colin
Circulation: Cardiovascular Interventions Vol 12 (2019)

More publications

Research interests

My interests lie in using data to answer key public health questions, particularly using spatial and longitudinal data and routinely collected datasets.  I am especially interested in the challenge of addressing physical and mental health problems holistically and in trials of complex interventions. 

I am keen to work in any area of health that has statistical challenges, but have particular interests in perinatal and early years research, physical activity interventions and the interface between physical and mental health.

Professional activities

Mathematics And Statistics (Organisational unit)
How can we best count street-connected children worldwide? - A Statisticians for Society project
The Royal Statistical Society (External organisation)
University of Birmingham (External organisation)
Geographical variation in the strengths and difficulties of children in Glasgow
HDR UK Scotland Research Day

More professional activities


STRAthclyde Diversity in Data LinkagE (STRADDLE) Doctoral Training Centre
Barry, Sarah (Co-investigator) Kavanagh, Kimberley (Co-investigator) Megiddo, Itamar (Co-investigator) Murray, Paul (Co-investigator) Rattray, Nicholas (Co-investigator)
The focus of the STRAthclyde Diversity in Data LinkagE (STRADDLE) DTC is to develop a centre of excellence in the linkage and analysis of data across disciplines. With an initial focus on health and healthcare delivery, STRADDLE will deliver linkage and innovative analysis of data from the molecular to population level, to achieve new insights and to maximize the value of health research data. There are 3 fully funded, 3.5 year PhD studentships are available to highly motivated UK and EU students. Successful applicants will be trained as the next generation of data scientists and develop skills and know how to deliver on the integration of diverse clinical data types – from molecules to man to populations.
01-Jan-2019 - 31-Jan-2023
Spatiotemporal variability in social, emotional and behavioural development of children
Barry, Sarah (Principal Investigator)
The objectives of this studentship are (i) to develop statistical methods to analyse linked individual and spatial data and (ii) to provide a comprehensive analysis of the development of social inequalities over time and geographical area using data from the Child Mental Health in Education (ChiMe) study, on 90,000 children aged 4 to 10 years followed up for between 2 and 6 years.
01-Jan-2019 - 30-Jan-2022
Thermal death model for hepatitis E virus (HEV)
Barry, Sarah (Principal Investigator) Kelly, Louise (Co-investigator)
01-Jan-2019 - 31-Jan-2021
Amendment Agreement - An exploratory study to test STASH, a peer-led intervention to prevent and reduce STI transmission and improve sexual health in secondary schools (69143)
Barry, Sarah (Principal Investigator)
17-Jan-2018 - 31-Jan-2018

More projects


Mathematics and Statistics
Livingstone Tower

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