Amy M Russell

Amy M Russell


Amy is a Senior Research Fellow recently awarded the LIHS Career Development Fellowship.

Her background is in the Social Sciences and Humanities and her\nmore recent work has been on addressing health inequalities in applied health

Current and previous roles

Amy joined the Leeds Institute of Health Sciences as a researcher in 2011. After acting as the lead researcher on 2 NIHR grants she was awarded the Institute's Career Development Fellowship. She is currently working on the project REAL-D REasonable Adjustments for Learning disabilities - Diabetes care

Previously she was the Senior Research Fellow and Project Manager for a National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Health Technology Assessment-funded three-year feasibility trial aimed at improving the diabetes management of people with a learning disability.

Prior to this, she worked on an RfPB project on depression screening for patients with diabetes and CHD in Primary Care.

She also holds an advisory role on two projects at the Centre for Religion and Public life on Places of Worship as sites for BME health.

She was formerly the Deputy Director of the Centre for Interdisciplinary Gender Studies, School of Sociology and Social Policy, and remains an affiliated member.

She has held previous posts in the Department of Theology and Religious Studies, University of Leeds (Lecturer 2009–2011, Teaching Assistant 2006–2009) and worked as an Academic Coordinator for a Higher Education Academy Subject Centre (2010–2011).

Her PhD (completed in 2010) examined women's embodied experiences of human trafficking and was fully funded by the AHRC. It was supervised between Religious Studies and the Centre for Interdisciplinary Gender Studies, University of Leeds.

Prior to her doctoral research, Amy was a Library Manager for Leeds City Council and line-managed a large team. During this time she was awarded her Masters which involved a period of fieldwork in Sierra Leone, examining the post-war reintegration of female combatants and the Truth and Reconciliation process.

House A (CI), Bryant L, Russell A M, Farrin A, Graham L, Walwayn R, Hulme C, Latchford G, Stansfield A, Riley D, Nagi D, Ajjan, R and others. Looking after yourself when you have diabetes, NIHR HTA programme grant £612,414. 2013–2016.

Evaluation of screening for depression in patients with chronic physical disease in primary care. Foy, R, Alderson S, McLintock K, West R, Potrata B, House A, Johnson K. NIHR Research for Patient Benefit. £242,141; 2011–13 for 18 months.


 Places of Worship as Sites for BME Health, Tomalin, E. Russell, A. M. IGNITE funded collaboration with Public Health Leeds. 2014.

State of Girls' rights in the UK today. Plan International UK. 2016

Her Thesis title was Becoming the border: de/constructing boundaries in the lives of women who have been trafficked for sexual exploitation. It examined the experiences of women who have been trafficked into sexual exploitation from the former Soviet Union to Israel and the impact upon their health, wellbeing and perceptions of body boundaries.

In addition to this research, she has also examined the government's decision to award gender-based care and health provision to faith-based organisations, with a focus on post-trafficking support in the UK. Prior to this her research, examined gender-based violence and social stigma through an embodied approach looking at the Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration (DDR) process in Sierra Leone and its viability for women. Amy also examined the effectiveness of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in Sierra Leone. This research followed on from a gender-based analysis of the use of religion in the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission.



  • LIHS Athena Swan Self-assessment Team
  • LIHS Equality and Inclusion representative
  • Doctor of Clinical Psychology supervisor and examiner

Research interests


Amy's interests can be described under two main themes:

Theme 1. Addressing health inequalities in applied health settings - with a special emphasis on the health of women, people with a learning disability, people from BME groups and long-term condition management. Her work includes qualitative work with patients and clinicians, intervention development and RCTs. For example her work as the lead researcher on the ethnographic study

Evaluation of screening for depression in patients with chronic physical disease in primary care, funded by the NIHR RfPB scheme. And her work as lead researcher and project manager on Looking after yourself when you have diabetes, an NIHR HTA grant.

Theme 2. Cultural and social explanations of inequalities - drawing on theories and methods from the humanities, social sciences and cultural geography to explore the social and cultural aspects of health and social inequalities. For example, her Arts and Humanities Research Council funded project on the enduring effects of human trafficking; Becoming the reproductive health, maternal well-being and breastfeeding. She was formerly the Deputy Director of the Centre for Interdisciplinary Gender Studies and remains an affiliated member.

Previously she has worked as a Research Fellow in Primary Care (University of Leeds) and Lecturer in Gender and Religion (University of Leeds). She\nadvises on ethnographic methods for an NIHR In-practice Fellowship and is a\nPRINCE2 practitioner. She is the co-rep for the School of Medicine Equality and Inclusion committee. She is a long-term member of the Athena Swan Self-Assessment Team in LIHS, diabetes, learning disabilities, depression, chronic illness, health inequalities,






  • PGCert Health Research, 2013
  • PhD Interdisciplinary Gender Studies – University of Leeds, 2010
  • MA Religion and Public Life – University of Leeds, 2005
  • BA (Hons) Theology & Religious Studies and English Literature – University of Leeds, 2002
  • PRINCE2 Practitioner 2013

Professional memberships

  • Society for Academic Primary Care
  • British Sociological Association
  • Feminist and Women's Studies Association

Student education

Amy teaches on the Intercalated BSc in qualitative methods. She supervises on the DClin programme and is open to applications to work on projects relating to her research themes. She has previously convened the undergraduate modules Women and Religion and Introduction to Academic Skills (which she created on the VLE) in addition to convening the masters level module Contemporary Issues in Religion and Gender. She has also taught on the modules Globalisation and the Sex Trade, Key Texts (gender and religion) and Race and Religion in South Africa. She supported masters level teaching in her role as the Deputy Director for the Centre for Interdisciplinary Gender Studies.

Research groups and institutes

  • Leeds Institute of Health Sciences
  • Cardiovascular
  • Health and social psychology
  • Infant feeding
  • Maternal, child and family health
  • Psychological and Social Medicine
  • The Health and Wellbeing of Older People
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