Understanding people’s relationships with social and physical environments research theme

Understanding how health and development are impacted by an individual’s environment.

The challenge

Physical and social environments impact on the way people think, act and feel. At the same time, people are constantly changing those physical and social environments. Understanding how we act in and towards our homes, schools, workplaces and leisure spaces is essential to tackling many societal and environmental challenges and ultimately to enhancing health and wellbeing. Efforts to support social justice for all, to ensure the ethical treatment of patients and to improve children’s education all rely on such behavioural insights, as do those to promote sustainable futures by tackling energy wastage and marine litter.   

Our response

Within the theme, we draw on a wide range of traditional and novel research methodologies to deliver evidence-based solutions that matter. Studies of how moral distress arises, health care teams work together, and how facilities are designed and built, inform approaches to improving work cultures, the ethical climate of organisations, staff wellbeing and patient outcomes. Investigations of developmental processes probe the two-way interaction between environments and cognitive, social, emotional and mental health outcomes. Monitoring the reactions of those immersed in virtual reality environments enables an in depth understanding of people-environment interactions, including how to retain ethical decision making in times of stress and why interaction with nature (and with companion animals) enhance wellbeing.

Research projects

Active projects

Start date: April 2020

End date: September 2022

Playing A/Part: investigating the experiences of autistic girls through drama, interactive media and participatory arts

Start date:

End date:

Completed projects

Start date:

End date:

Start date:

End date:

Start date:

End date:

Start date:

End date:

Start date:

End date:

Start date:

End date:

Start date:

End date:

Start date:

End date:

Start date:

End date:

Start date: 2018

End date: 2020

Start date:

End date:

Start date:

End date:

Start date:

End date:

Start date:

End date:

Start date:

End date:

Start date:

End date:

Start date:

End date:

Start date: October 2014

End date: April 2016

Start date:

End date:

Start date:

End date:

Research theme members

NameRoleSchool
Ruth AbramsLecturerSchool of Health Sciences
Kourosh AhmadiReader in Nutritional GenomicsSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Illkur AktanTeaching Fellow in Veterinary AnatomySchool of Veterinary Medicine
Chris AskewLecturer in Psychological Methods and StatisticsSchool of Psychology
Tibor AuerResearch FellowSchool of Psychology
Adrian BanksSenior LecturerSchool of Psychology
Carys BanksResearch FellowSchool of Health Sciences
Elizabeth BarleyProfessor of Mental Health Sciences and NursingSchool of Health Sciences
Thorsten BarnhoferProfessor in Clinical PsychologySchool of Psychology
Martha BetsonLecturer in Veterinary ParasitologySchool of Veterinary Medicine
Edward BredeTeaching Fellow in Biological SciencesSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Kathrin Cohen-KadoshSenior Lecturer in Developmental Cognitive NeuroscienceSchool of Psychology
Tina CohenSenior Teaching FellowSchool of Psychology
Anna CoxResearch FellowSchool of Health Sciences
Mark CropleyProfessor of Health Psychology, Co-director MSc Health PsychologySchool of Psychology
Bridget DibbSenior Lecturer in Health PsychologySchool of Psychology
Derk-jan DijkProfessor of Sleep and PhysiologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Mary Bernadette EganSenior Research FellowSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Emily FarranProfessor in Developmental PsychologySchool of Psychology
Fabio FasoliLecturer in Social PsychologySchool of Psychology
Christopher Fife-ShawProfessor of PsychologySchool of Psychology
Birgitta GaterslebenReader in Environmental PsychologySchool of Psychology
Judith GentleDirector of Undergraduate Programme for PsychologySchool of Psychology
Katie Gilligan-LeeLecturer in Developmental PsychologySchool of Psychology
Deborah GoochLecturer in Developmental PsychologySchool of Psychology
Alexandra GrandisonSenior LecturerSchool of Psychology
Bruce GriffinProfessor of Nutritional MetabolismSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Jessica GuzmanPostdoctoral Research FellowSchool of Psychology
Lucy HaleTeaching Fellow, Clinical PsychologistSchool of Psychology
Paul HannaSenior Lecturer and Research Director in Clinical PsychologySchool of Psychology
Jenny HarrisLecturer in Cancer CareSchool of Health Sciences
Peter HegartyProfessor of PsychologySchool of Psychology
Erica HepperLecturer in Personality/Social PsychologySchool of Psychology
Peter HilpertLecturer in Psychology, Research Methods and StatisticsSchool of Psychology
Charo HodgkinsResearch Fellow (RA II)School of Psychology
Linda HoinvilleResearch FellowSchool of Health Sciences
Teresa HollandsSenior Teaching Fellow in Veterinary NutritionSchool of Veterinary Medicine
Aífe Hopkins-DoyleLecturer in Social PsychologySchool of Psychology
Sarfraz JerajTeaching Fellow School of Psychology
Bridget JonesResearch FellowSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Christina JonesSenior LecturerSchool of Psychology
Christopher JonesSenior Lecturer in Social PsychologySchool of Psychology
Naomi KlepaczResearch FellowSchool of Psychology
Roberto La RagioneProfessor in Veterinary Microbiology and PathologySchool of Veterinary Medicine
Jill MabenProfessor of Health Services Research and NursingSchool of Health Sciences
Carin MagnussonLecturer in Health Services ResearchSchool of Health Sciences
Oliver MasonReader in Personality, Psychopathology and Individual DifferencesSchool of Psychology
Freda MoldLecturer - Integrated CareSchool of Health Sciences
Linda MooreTeaching FellowSchool of Health Sciences
Joanna MossLecturer in Developmental PsychologySchool of Psychology
Jonathan David NelsonLecturer in Experimental Cognitive PsychologySchool of Psychology
Terry Ng-KnightLecturer in Personality Individual DifferencesSchool of Psychology
Caroline NicholsonProfessor of Palliative Care and AgeingSchool of Health Sciences
Jane OgdenChair in Health PsychologySchool of Psychology
Bertram OpitzProfessor of Psychology (Neuroimaging/Neuroscience)School of Psychology 
Sharmini ParamasivamTeaching FellowSchool of Veterinary Medicine
Catherine ParsonsResearch FellowSchool of Health Sciences
Robert PattonLecturer in Clinical PsychologySchool of Psychology 
Matthew PeacockResearch FellowSchool of Health Sciences
Monique RaatsAssociate Dean (Research and Innovation)School of Psychology
Eleanor RatcliffeLecturer in Environmental PsychologySchool of Psychology
Maxwell RobertsResearch FellowSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Andrea RoccoLecturer in Mathematical BiologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Julie RoundResearch OfficerSchool of Psychology
Patrice RusconiLecturer in PsychologySchool of Psychology
Pascale RussellLecturer in Social PsychologySchool of Psychology
Lorenzo SantorelliTeaching Fellow in ZoologySchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Peter SewellInnovation Delivery ManagerSchool of Veterinary Medicine
Bianca Sica SiedlerResearch FellowSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Juha SilvantoReader in NeuroscienceSchool of Psychology
Laura SimondsSenior Teaching Fellow and Academic Director - Clinical Psychology DoctorateSchool of Psychology
Kimberley SmithLecturer in Health PsychologySchool of Psychology
Annette SterrProfessor of Cognitive Neuroscience and NeuropsychologySchool of Psychology
Dona Wilani SubasingheTeaching Fellow in Small Animal PracticeSchool of Veterinary Medicine
Mira SulonenResearch FellowSchool of Biosciences and Medicine
Cath TaylorReader in Healthcare Workforce Organisation and WellbeingSchool of Health Sciences
Harriet TenenbaumReader in Developmental PsychologySchool of Psychology
Hannah ThompsonLecturer in Neuropsychology and NeuroscienceSchool of Psychology
Lada Timotijevic Principal Research FellowSchool of Psychology
Ines ViolanteSenior Lecturer in Psychological NeuroscienceSchool of Psychology
Renske VisserResearch FellowSchool of Health Sciences
Emma WilliamsLecturer in Developmental PsychologySchool of Psychology
Kayleigh WylesLecturer in Environmental PsychologySchool of Psychology
Magdalena Anna ZasadaResearch Fellow in Workforce Organisation and WellbeingSchool of Health Sciences

Research theme champions

Lada Timotijevic profile image

Dr Lada Timotijevic

Research Theme Champion

Charo Hodgkins profile image

Dr Charo Hodgkins

Associate Research Theme Champion

Contact us

Find us

Address

Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences
Kate Granger Building
30 Priestley Road, Surrey Research Park
Guildford
Surrey
GU2 7YH