Skip to content

Health, Society, People and Place


The Health, Society, People and Place research theme is an interface of multidisciplinary research. The theme is focused on translational and applied health research, community, educational, archaeological and forensic settings, for the benefit of patients and the public. Projects bring together researchers from Life and Medical Sciences, Humanities and Social Sciences.  

Current health-related projects include: healthcare quality, safety and equity; diagnostics and interventions; medicines and treatment optimisation including cost-effectiveness; and design and co-design of person-centred healthcare interventions. Our pedagogical research impacts on health and/or societies via improved education of patients, public and healthcare/education professionals, transcending organisational and disciplinary boundaries.   

’People and place’ projects explore life and death in past and contemporary communities, making major contributions to the fields of landscape, archaeological prospection, visualisation for heritage science and geophysical surveying, molecular biology and computer simulation, heritage and wellbeing, taphonomy and decay, human and social identity, and material culture.  

Disciplinary excellence is required and drawn on in our interdisciplinary research. By integrating methods and expertise across disciplines, we address societal and individual challenges at local and global scales.

Photo of someone looking at eye examination images on a computer

Events and upcoming seminars

Optometry & Vision Science seminar series

Wednesday 16th February 2021 - 13.10: Dr Annette Allen, Division of Neuroscience & Experimental Psychology, University of Manchester

Title: How does melanopsin help us to see?

Abstract: The discovery of melanopsin, a new photoreceptor in the mammalian retina, has fundamentally changed our understanding of how the eye responds to light. Melanopsin photoreceptors were discovered in attempts to understand how endogenous circadian clocks are reset to the light:dark cycle and are still often considered ‘non-visual’ photoreceptors. However, there is now abundant evidence that melanopsin photoreceptors also make an important contribution to the processes of perceptual vision. I will discuss work in which we have employed multi-primary displays to gain control of melanopsin activity, independent of chromaticity and luminance. This approach has allowed us to identify the distinct contribution made by melanopsin to vision, both in regulating subconscious responses to light (sleep/alertness), and as an origin for aspects of form vision.

This is an online seminar. Please contact Dr Jonathan Denniss for the link.


Wed 16th March 13.10: Dr Fiona Cruickshank, Division of Pharmacy & Optometry, University of Manchester

This is an online seminar. Please contact Dr Jonathan Denniss for the link.


Thursday 7th April 13.10: Dr Nimesh Patel, University of Houston College of Optometry

Title: A histological basis for in-vivo testing in glaucoma

Abstract: The exact pathophysiology of glaucoma remains unknown, and indirect measures of retinal ganglion cells are essential for diagnosis and monitoring. The purpose of this presentation is to discuss the associations between in vivo measures and underlying retinal ganglion cell content, with an emphasis on the macula region. The experiments are based on the non-human primate experimental glaucoma model, where perimetry, optical coherence tomography and histological data are obtained.  The two main questions discussed in this presentation include:
1. Are in vivo measures of inner retinal thickness an accurate representation of retinal ganglion cell content?
2. Are visual thresholds from perimetry a good representation of retinal ganglion cell content?

This is an online seminar. Please contact Dr Jonathan Denniss for the link.


Recent Publications

HA Bham, J Denniss
“Effects of glaucoma on detection and discrimination of image blur”
Ophthalmic & Physiological Optics

Research expertise

The research in the Health, Society, People and Place theme comprises specific knowledge and expertise in a range of subjects. Please contact the research theme leads for more information or to discuss potential collaborations.

The key areas of our expertise are:

  • Vision science & clinical optometry
  • The past informing the present and future: Archaeological and Forensic Sciences
  • Person-centred healthcare
  • Education innovation, research and development

More detailed information about these areas is available on our Research expertise in the Health, Society, People and Place theme page.

Research Leads

The theme is led by a Director of Research and three deputies who are jointly responsible for the scientific direction of the theme.

Research theme members

The Health, Society, People and Place theme consists of several research groups working together to perform collaborative, multi-disciplinary research.

Visit out Research theme members page.