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Dr Clare Blackburn



Associate Professor


WMS - Mental Health and Wellbeing
University of Warwick
Tel: +44(0)24 7652 4132

Research Interests

My research focuses on socio-economic inequality, socio-demographic factors and health and disability. It draws on neo-materialist and disability studies theories to consider the effect of structural factors on health and health behaviour, and the social, political and cultural factors that create and define disability and responses to it. My work has strong policy and practice foci through its concern with the application of knowledge to change health policy and clinical practice. Much of my work has focused on the social patterning of health and health behaviour, particularly in households with children. Since 2006 I have developed a programme of work on childhood disability: the methodological issues associated with estimating the prevalence of childhood disability; the social circumstances of disabled children and their families; the predictors of child and parental disability and the temporal ordering of social disadvantage and disability outcomes. Recent studies include: secondary analysis of cross-sectional and longitudinal data sets to examine the relationship and social patterning of childhood longstanding illness/disability with socio-economic circumstances; development of a national indicator and survey on services for disabled children; evaluation of a national pilot on childcare for disabled children. My current grant, from the ESRC is examining the association between chronic disabling conditions in childhood and social disadvantage. This study encompasses a systematic review and secondary analyses of census data and the UK ONS longitudinal study to identify the predictors and temporal ordering of the association between exposure to social disadvantage in early childhood with later onset of chronic disabling conditions.


I came to Warwick after a clinical career in nursing and health visiting to pursue research interests in the field the social patterning of health and health behaviour. I have worked on a number of studies including: promoting health in poverty; the social patterning of smoking behaviour in households with young children and children's exposure to cigarette smoke; adult and child caring; childhood disability. I teach in Warwick Medical School on the undergraduate medical education programme and on a number of masters level courses in the School of Health and Social Studies and Warwick Medical School. I also convene the Inequalities in Health Research Interest Group in the Institute of Health.

Research Projects

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