Image by Marvin Meyer

Young Peoples' Mental Health

Vice Chancellor's Fellow at the Elizabeth Blackwell Institute (University of Bristol).

  • Focus - Research focusing on the wellbeing challenges facing university students, digital technology and ethical challenges around information sharing with the families of young people experiencing mental health difficulties

  • Policy - Engagement in strategic collaborations between the Elizabeth Blackwell Institute and Policy Bristol

  • Methods -  Application of data science, mixed-methods, secondary quantitative data analysis, qualitative thematic analysis and creative co-production

  • Affiliations - Population Health Sciences (Bristol Medical School), and the School of Education, within the University of Bristol.


Core projects

Image by Jametlene Reskp

Universities notifying the emergency contacts of students experiencing serious mental health difficulties

This project focuses on university policies that allow students to nominate an emergency contact who the university can contact in the event of serious mental health concerns. This research examines the student motivations for and against opting-in, the mental health risks associated with students who do not opt-in to this support, and the policy experiences of key stakeholders (students, university staff and emergency contacts). ​

Further details

Laptop and Diary Topview

Diary use and wellbeing among university students undertaking the Science of Happiness course

Investigating how the content of written diaries can reveal insights into the wellbeing experiences of university students. This work utilises electronic diaries completed within the Science of Happiness course - a psychoeducation programme being delivered at the University of Bristol (led by Prof. Bruce Hood).

Full paper

Further details

College Student

COVID-19 student mental health survey - University of Bristol

Examination into university student experiences and outcomes (wellbeing, mental health and educational) during the COVID-19 pandemic, with the goal of informing service provision at the University of Bristol. This research forms part of the wider University of Bristol Student Wellbeing Survey project, with input from academics, students, staff support students and senior leaders across the university.

Summary report


Collaborative projects

Woman on her Phone

Adolescent technology use and mental health

Exploring the opportunities and harms posed by digital technology use among young people. A major goal of the research is to identify how digital technology can inform and improve mental health consultations with young people. The project also includes creative engagement work co-led by young people to educate clinicians on the uses of technology. MRC funded and led by Dr Lucy Biddle.

Further details

Image by Adrian Swancar

Including the Excluded: Education and Wellbeing in the time of COVID-19

The aim of this research will be to explore the educational and associated psychological experiences of young peoples who have experienced school exclusion during the coronavirus pandemic, using qualitative methods, co-production and engaged pedagogy. Funded by Brigstow Institute and led by Dr Jessica Abrahams.

Climate anxiety and creative responses among young people

This project explored the worries and perspectives of marginalised young people regarding the unfolding climate and ecological situation. Funded by Brigstow Institute and co-led by Dr David Sands, We The Curious and Creative Youth Network.

Further details

Project update (COVID-19)




World Mental Health Day 2020: "How have university students navigated the COVID-19 pandemic?"