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Who is conducting the research?

Felicity Boardman

Dr Felicity Boardman

Telephone:02476 151291

Staff Profile
Office: Room B0.16, Health

The Imagining Futures research project is being conducted by Dr Felicity Boardman and Dr Corinna Clark (and previously Dr Rachel Hale) at Warwick Medical School, under the guidance of two mentors, Prof. Frances Griffiths and Dr. Anne-Marie Slowther. Initially a study of attitudes towards genetic screening amongst families living with SMA (in conjunction with SMA Support UK and funded by the ESRC), the Imagining Futures study is now being extended to include a further four genetic conditions: fragile X syndrome, cystic fibrosis, haemophilia and thalassemia. The study is currently being funded by a Wellcome Trust Investigator Award, obtained in July 2016.

Felicity's Background

Felicity conducted her research training and doctoral research in the department of Sociology at the University of Warwick exploring how families living with Spinal Muscular Atrophy felt about, and made decisions about, the use of prenatal testing technologies in the context of their familial experiences with the condition.

In 2010, Felicity moved to Warwick Medical School to undertake a post in mixed methods research, and in 2011 was awarded a Mildred Blaxter Postdoctoral Fellowship from the Foundation for the Sociology of Health and Illness to disseminate the findings of her doctoral thesis. During this time, Felicity became interested in the possibility of screening for Spinal Muscular Atrophy and submitted a proposal to undertake an exploration of views around screening amongst families living directly with the condition.

In 2012, Felicity was awarded funding for the project from the Economic and Social Research Council, and began the fellowship in May 2013. The study received a good response from the SMA community, with 36 people participating in an in-depth interview and 337 returning the SMA Screening Survey (UK). The study has resulted in various outputs including: peer reviewed publications, a collaboration with an artist to create an art installation highlighting issues around genetic screening, presentations to patient groups and professionals, as well as publications in media outlets (see the outputs page for details).

In February 2017, the next phase of the Imagining Futures study began.

Dr Corinna Clark

Telephone:024 761 50455

Staff Profile
Office: Room B0.17, Health

Corinna joined the project at the start of 2019, previously being a research fellow in the School of Life Sciences at Warwick University (and prior to that, a researcher in the Department of Veterinary Sciences at the University of Bristol). Corinna completed her doctoral training at the University of Edinburgh and has has experience with a wide range of quantitative analysis techniques, including mathematical modelling of large complex data sets and epidemiological studies. As well as human subjects, Corinna has an interest in animal behaviour, welfare & ethics and has worked with many different animal species during her career.

Dr Rachel Hale
Rachel worked on the project from 2017 to February 2019. She previously worked at the Open University, University of South Wales, University of Nottingham, the University of the West of England and Cardiff University and has experience in qualitative and mixed methods projects (infection prevention and control, clinicians’ decision making, cancer survivorship and end of life care, and the social and ethical implications of laboratory grown red blood cells).

Additional Information

About the conditions

Latest Project News

Imagining Futures on Facebook

Imagining Futures Blogspot

Contact Us/ Get Involved

Useful Links (including support groups)

Links to surveys (surveys are currently closed)

Funded by Wellcome