Changing behaviour at the population level theme
University of Sheffield
Abigail is interested in using theories of practice to develop alcohol epidemiology and policy analysis. She is also keen to build on this work to study trends in alcohol and other health-related behaviours and engaging with policy stakeholders.
What has been your career journey so far?
I began my studies at the University of Sheffield in 2013 and graduated with a BSc in Medical Science. I then joined the Master of Public Health course, from which I graduated with Distinction and was awarded the Hutchinson Prize in Public Health. I am currently a PhD student in the Sheffield Alcohol Research Group.
Why did you choose to do a PhD in public health research?
I enjoyed my Masters in Public Health, particularly working in the Sheffield Alcohol Research Group on my dissertation project. I wanted to build on this experience and was interested in a career in public health research.
What is your research focused on?
My PhD work is focused on exploring the relationships between drinking contexts (such as drinking with friends or in a pub), alcohol consumption, and alcohol-related harms.
Why is it important?
Studying these relationships can help public health researchers to understand how and why interventions affect alcohol consumption and harm outcomes. This can support the development of more effective and targeted interventions.
What do you like about being a part of the NIHR School for Public Health Research?
It’s nice to be part of a wider research community including other PhD students. Last year, I was a member of the ResNet committee, and I enjoyed working together to develop training opportunities for researchers.
What skills have you learnt and/or are hoping to learn as part of your PhD?
I have conducted four studies and developed skills in literature reviewing and advanced quantitative methods. Through this process I have improved my project management skills and collaborated with colleagues. I have also developed my writing skills through writing reports and papers with experienced co-authors.
What do you hope to do after completing your PhD?
I will be working as a Research Associate in the Sheffield Alcohol Research Group. I will be working on two large projects exploring changes in British drinking culture over the last 16 years and investigating why young people are drinking less alcohol.