Dr David Clarke

Dr David Clarke


David is a qualitative researcher with an interest in ethnographic and mixed methods research related to multidisciplinary team-based rehabilitation in stroke care. Associate Professor in Stroke Care


PhD (Sociology and Social Policy) Achieving teamwork: a grounded theory investigation in selected stroke units in the north of England. University of Leeds 2007

MSc in Health Sciences (with distinction) Leeds Metropolitan University, 1995.

Certificate in Education (Teachers of Nurses) College of Ripon and York St John, York, 1987.

BSc Nursing Studies (with commendation) Leeds Polytechnic 1986.\n Registered Mental Nurse. Scalebor Park School of Nursing, 1981.

Registered General Nurse. Bradford School Of Nursing, 1979. \n \nCurrent and previous roles

Current position

Associate Professor in Stroke Care.

Previous Positions

Lecturer in Stroke Care September 2013- to December 2016.

Stroke Association Senior Research Training Fellowship (September 2010-August 2013).

Lecturer School of Healthcare, University of Leeds January 1997 to August 2013.

Research Fellow Academic Unit of Elderly Care and Rehabilitation, Project Lead TRACS Process Evaluation (August 2008 to July 2011)

Director, Centre for Nursing Studies, University of Limerick (January 1996 December 1997)

Common Foundation Programme Lead, Bradford and Airedale College of Health (January 1991-December 1995)

Nurse Tutor, Bradford and Airedale College of Health (September 1987-January 1991).

Charge Nurse, Bradford Health Authority (1982-1986).

Staff Nurse, Bradford Health Authority (1981-1982)

Student Nurse (Post-registration Mental Health programme), Bradford Health Authority (1980-1981)

Staff Nurse, Bradford Health Authority (1979-1980)

Student Nurse (General Nursing Programme), Bradford Health Authority (1976-1979)

Current research interests

Qualitative and mixed methods research, primarily in stroke and rehabilitative care

Interdisciplinary teamwork and its contribution to stroke care.

Current and recent research

Co-Applicant Development and evaluation of strategies to reduce sedentary behaviour in patients after stroke and improve outcomes (RP-PG-0615-20019)

Co-applicant on the NIHR Health Technology Assessment programme funded study (HTA: 15/43/07): Individually randomised controlled multi-centre trial to determine the clinical and cost effectiveness of a home-based exercise intervention for older people with frailty as extended rehabilitation following acute illness or injury, including embedded process evaluation.  March 2017-February 2020.

Co-applicant and Lead for the Yorkshire sites in the NIHR Health Services and Delivery Research funded (13/114/95) CREATE study: Using co-production to improve patient carer and staff experiences in health care organizations: a multi-centre, mixed methods evaluation in inpatient stroke units. January 2016 to December 2018 For information on CREATE see here

Chief Investigator for the NIHR Research for Patient Benefit funded (PB-PG-0213-30019) ReAcT Study (Why don't stroke survivors receive the recommended amount of active therapy?). September 2014 to February 2017. For information on ReAcT see here

Chief Investigator for the Stroke Rehabilitation Nursing study (3 linked studies) funded by the Stroke Association (2010-2013), including: A systematic Review (meta-ethnography), a Q-methodology and linked qualitative interview study exploring the systematic review outcomes in the context of contemporary stroke unit practice (4 stroke units). Two in-depth case studies examining integrated team working to deliver increased therapy time in stroke units.

Co-applicant, Project Manager and researcher (2008-2011) Training Caregivers after Stroke (TRACS) Process Evaluation Study. 3 Year NIHR RfPB Funded study using qualitative observation and interviews in 10 stroke units in England. Managed the research team. Participated in and co-ordinated the collection and analysis of data. Prepared conference presentations and led on three publications. Prepared the final report for RfPB.

PhD in Social Policy and Sociology 2007 using ethnographic methods (participant observation and semi structured interviews) in 2 stroke units.

Co-applicant and researcher: Delphi Survey, questionnaire and interview study (Developing and testing portfolio guidelines) 2005- 2007. Contributed to design and analysis of Delphi survey and student questionnaire. Collected data through interviews and analysed interview and survey data. Led on one publication and was co-author on a second publication.

Teaching responsibilities

Postgraduate and Undergraduate students, primarily in relation to Stroke Care.

PhD supervision

Interested in supervising students with projects focused on stroke rehabilitation, particularly multidisciplinary team and specialist professional rehabilitation in primary and secondary care settings.

Current PhD students

Sarah Batt. (Primary supervisor): An in-depth inquiry into how stroke patients are supported with eating and drinking in stroke units. Part-time PhD, University of Leeds

Nicola Cornwall (Co-supervisor) Exploring sedentary behaviour in stroke survivors with mobility disability living at home. Full-time PhD, University of Leeds

Louisa Burton (Lead Supervisor) Talking about recovery after stroke- how can we do it better. Full-time PhD, University of Nottingham

Joanne Howe (Co-supervisor) Implementing rural community stroke services: Aspiration or reality?

Professional activities

Member of the National Stroke Nurses Forum

Member of the World Stroke Organisation

Member of the Society for Research in Rehabilitation

Member of the Stroke Association Research Awards Panel

Member- Scientific Advisory Panel: UK Stroke Forum Conference

Member-Scientific Advisory Panel: Royal College of Nursing International Nursing Research Conference

Former Member UK Stroke Research Network Primary Care Clinical Studies group (Stroke Research Network replaced by Clinical Research Networks in 2014).

Research interests

Understanding and developing the organisation and delivery of stroke care in inpatient and community settings.

Qualitative exploration of the experiences of stroke service staff, stroke survivors and caregivers

Process evaluation of complex interventions in stroke care and older people with frailty

Use of co-production methods in stroke rehabilitation and care of older people settings.


  • PhD, Sociology and Social Policy (Leeds)
  • MSc in Health Sciences
  • BSc Nursing Studies
  • Certificate in Education
  • Registered Nurse

Professional memberships

  • Society of Research In Rehabilitation
  • National Stroke Nurses Forum
  • World Stroke Organisation

Student education

I teach a range of sessions to undergraduate and post graduate students related to stroke including epidemiology, primary prevention, pathophysiology, acute and rehabilitation care, secondary prevention.  I also teach qualitative research methods.

<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>We welcome enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="https://phd.leeds.ac.uk">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>