Professor Kat Smith

Social Work and Social Policy

Personal statement

I am a Professor of Public Health Policy at the Strathclyde School of Social Work and Social Policy (having recently moved, via Strathclyde's Global Talent scheme, from the University of Edinburgh's School of Social & Political Science, where I was Director of Research and Co-Director of SKAPE - the Centre for Science, Knowledge & Policy at Edinburgh). 

My principle research interests are the dynamics of policy change and the relationships between evidence, expertise, policy and practice, particularly for issues relating to public health and inequalities. I am currently involved in the following five areas of research: (i) research exploring public, policy and academic understandings of health inequalities in the UK (supported by grants from the ESRC and by my 2014 Philip Leverhulme Prize award), which uses a combination of surveys, deliberative mini-publics, interviews and documentary analysis; (ii) research examining innovative health taxes, which is exploring the potential for different types of taxes in a range of different income settings (this includes work focusing on Scotland, which is funded by an ESRC impact accelerator award); (iii) research exploring the impacts of the UK's research impact agenda; (iv) I am leading a policy-focused workstream of SIPHER, a UKPRP funded consortium that is working to support policymakers to achieve an upstream shift in policy responses to public health and health inequalities via a complex systems modelling support tool; and (v) I am also involved in a separate UKPRP funded consortium called SPECTRUM, for which I will be helping to develop deliberative approaches to examining public preferences for tackling the costs of unhealthy commodity products (alcohol, cigarettes, ultra-processed food, etc). My earlier research (undertaken at the universities of Edinburgh, Bath and Durham) involved analysing corporate (particularly tobacco industry) efforts to influence EU and European Member State policies, comparatively assessing UK policies to tackle health inequalities, and evaluating national and local strategies to improve public health in the devolved UK. These various projects have been written up in various journal articles, a monograph entitled ‘Beyond Evidence-Based Public Health Policy: The Interplay of Ideas (Palgrave Macmillan, October 2013), a co-authored book on The Impact Agenda (forthcoming in Spring 2020 with Policy Press) and a British Medical Association award-winning edited collection, ‘Health Inequalities: Critical Perspectives’ (Oxford University Press 2016). I am currently Co-Editor-in-Chief of Evidence & Policy and Co-Editor of the book series Palgrave Studies in Science, Knowledge & Policy.

I welcome PhD applications concerned with public policy analysis, public health or inequalities and have a strong track record of supporting graduate students in their research and policy careers.

Publications

The Unequal Pandemic : COVID-19 and Health Inequalities
Bambra Clare, Lynch Julia, Smith Katherine E
(2021)
Understanding commercial actors' engagement in policy debates on proposed e-cigarette regulation in Scotland
Ikegwuonu Theresa, Hilton Shona, Smith Katherine E, Buckton Christina H, Wong Mark, Weishaar Heide B
Tobacco Control (2021)
https://doi.org/10.1136/tobaccocontrol-2020-056084
Evidence use in E-cigarettes debates : scientific showdowns in a 'wild west' of research
Smith Katherine E, Ikegwuonu Theresa, Weishaar Heide, Hilton Shona
BMC Public Health Vol 21 (2021)
https://doi.org/10.1186/s12889-021-10396-6
An atlas of health inequalities and health disparities research : "How is this all getting done in silos, and why?"
Collyer Taya A, Smith Katherine E
Social Science and Medicine Vol 264 (2020)
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.socscimed.2020.113330
Inequalities, harm reduction and non-combustible nicotine products : a meta-ethnography of qualitative evidence
Lucherini Mark, Hill Sarah, Smith Katherine
BMC Public Health Vol 20 (2020)
https://doi.org/10.1186/s12889-020-09083-9
The Impact Agenda : Controversies, Consequences and Challenges
Smith Katherine E, Bandola-Gill Justyna, Meer Nasar, Stewart Ellen, Watermeyer Richard
(2020)

More publications

Research interests

My principle research interests are the dynamics of policy change and the relationships between evidence, expertise, policy and practice, particularly for issues relating to public health and inequalities. I am currently involved in the following five areas of research: (i) research exploring public, policy and academic understandings of health inequalities in the UK (supported by grants from the ESRC and by my 2014 Philip Leverhulme Prize award), which uses a combination of surveys, deliberative mini-publics, interviews and documentary analysis; (ii) research examining innovative health taxes, which is exploring the potential for different types of taxes in a range of different income settings (this includes work focusing on Scotland, which is funded by an ESRC impact accelerator award); (iii) research exploring the impacts of the UK's research impact agenda; (iv) I am leading a policy-focused workstream of SIPHER, a UKPRP funded consortium that is working to support policymakers to achieve an upstream shift in policy responses to public health and health inequalities via a complex systems modelling support tool; and (v) I am also involved in a separate UKPRP funded consortium called SPECTRUM, for which I will be helping to develop deliberative approaches to examining public preferences for tackling the costs of unhealthy commodity products (alcohol, cigarettes, ultra-processed food, etc). My earlier research (undertaken at the universities of Edinburgh, Bath and Durham) involved analysing corporate (particularly tobacco industry) efforts to influence EU and European Member State policies, comparatively assessing UK policies to tackle health inequalities, and evaluating national and local strategies to improve public health in the devolved UK. These various projects have been written up in various journal articles, a monograph entitled ‘Beyond Evidence-Based Public Health Policy: The Interplay of Ideas (Palgrave Macmillan, October 2013), a co-authored book on The Impact Agenda (forthcoming in Spring 2020 with Policy Press) and a British Medical Association award-winning edited collection, ‘Health Inequalities: Critical Perspectives’ (Oxford University Press 2016). I am currently Co-Editor-in-Chief of Evidence & Policy and Co-Editor of the book series Palgrave Studies in Science, Knowledge & Policy.

 

Projects

Senior public health leadership during the 2019 novel coronavirus outbreak: Comparative approaches to mitigating the spread of infectious disease and its social consequences in Canada and abroad
Smith, Kat (Principal Investigator)
01-Jan-2020 - 16-Jan-2021
Developing a participatory approach for exploring young people's perspectives on health inequalities
Smith, Kat (Principal Investigator)
01-Jan-2019 - 30-Jan-2021
SPECTRUM: Shaping Public hEalth poliCies To Reduce IneqUalities and harM
Smith, Kat (Principal Investigator)
01-Jan-2019 - 30-Jan-2024
System-science Informed Public Health and Economic Research for Non-communicable Disease Prevention (the SIPHER Consortium)
Smith, Kat (Principal Investigator)
16-Jan-2019 - 15-Jan-2024

More projects

Address

Social Work and Social Policy
Lord Hope Building

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