We have a mentoring scheme for academics that allows us to help enhance your career. Details of the mentors and their areas of interest are described.

  • Rebecca Barnes, Bristol
  • Christine Bond, Aberdeen
  • Peter Bower, Manchester
  • Sandra Eldridge, Queen Mary University London
  • Kerry Hood, Cardiff
  • David Kessler, Bristol
  • Anne MacFarlane, Limerick
  • Bob McKinley, Keele
  • Danielle van der Windt, Keele
  • Fiona Wood, Cardiff


Rebecca Barnes

Rebecca Barnes has been a Research Fellow in Primary Health Care at the University of Bristol since 2012.  She works within the Centre for Academic Primary Care in the School for Social & Community Medicine. Rebecca‘s undergraduate degree was in Psychology from the University of Plymouth. She went on to complete a Postgraduate Diploma in Psychological Research Methods and a PhD in the same institution. Her main expertise lies in qualitative research methods. In 2002 she won an ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowship Award which she used to develop her skills in conversation analytic methods by attending a taught summer school at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

After this she worked with Professor Charles Antaki in the Social Sciences Department at Loughborough University on an ESRC funded study of psychotherapy interactions and then moved to the Peninsula College of Medicine & Dentistry. Here she worked her way up from postdoctoral researcher to senior research fellow in clinical education. Whilst here she became a pastoral tutor for undergraduate medical students, was an early career researcher representative on the Research and Innovation Committee, and supervised postgraduate research students from a mix of disciplinary backgrounds including social psychology, clinical psychology, medicine, social science and speech and language therapy. With the support of Professor Nicky Britten and the Foundation for the Sociology of Heath and Illness, she also instigated the biennial ‘International meeting on conversation analysis and clinical encounters.’  

Rebecca has always had an interest in studying communication in medical care and was very happy to move to Bristol when a qualitative primary care research fellow post came up. Since taking up her post she has relished the opportunity to embrace being a primary care social scientist and to experience the role of being chief investigator on her own NIHR-funded projects. She has also developed a new short course in Bristol entitled ‘Introduction to using conversation analysis to study health care encounters’; a mindfulness training course for trainee GPs in the Severn Deanery School of Primary Care; and is currently sharing the post of SPCR training lead.

Christine Bond

Christine Bond is Professor of Primary Care (Pharmacy), at the Centre of Academic Primary Care, University of Aberdeen.

Christine Bond has a first degree in pharmacy and spent five years working in the research laboratories at Glaxo Smith Kline when she first graduated. After living abroad for a few years, she returned to the UK and  worked part time as a community pharmacist while her children were growing up, in tandem with a part time academic post. This arrangement  balanced family life, professional practice   and   developing a career in health services research.  She completed a Masters in Education in 1994 and  her PhD in 1995, progressing through the University scales until she was appointed to a Personal Chair in 2001 and became Head of the  Centre of Academic Primary Care  in 2007.  She  was part time Consultant in Pharmaceutical Public Health (NHS Grampian) from 1996-2012, and in that time was awarded Fellowship of the Faculty of Public  Health. In 2011 she was invited to become a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh, one of very few non-medical members. 

Christine  has a  large portfolio of pharmacy practice research, funded mostly by the Chief Scientist Office, Research Councils and a recent European FP7 grant.  Her work explores  the contribution of pharmacy to the safe, evidence based,  cost effective use of medicines (prescribed and ‘OTC’), drug misuse, the community pharmacist-general practitioner interface and the wider health care agenda.

She has successfully supervised many PhD students, most of whom come from backgrounds other than general practice.  

Christine is Editor of the International Journal of Pharmacy Practice, has served as an elected member of the Scottish National Board of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain (RPSGB)  for 10 years until summer 2009,  and has served on several national Research Panels eg the Health Service Research Committee of the Scottish Office, the MRC College of Experts, the RPSGB Pharmacy Practice Research Trust Award panel, the Health Services and Pharmacy Practice Conference  Panel. She is deputy chair of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain Expert Advisory Panel for Science. In 2010 she received the UK Pharmas Lifetime Achievement award. Throughout her recent career she has always sought to identify with general practice and primary care whilst maintaining her links with her core discipline of pharmacy.

Peter Bower

Peter Bower is a Professor of Health Services Research and Lead at the Centre for Primary Care, University of Manchester.

He has a first degree in psychology and first started to work in primary care when he took up a PhD studentship within the Department of General Practice at St George’s Hospital Medical School, exploring GP recognition of depression.

Following completion of the PhD, he joined the new National Primary Care Research and Development Centre (NPCRDC) at the University of Manchester, where he worked throughout the lifetime of the Centre.

Following the end of the NPCRDC, he stayed in Manchester to continue research work within the new Centre for Primary Care, which was a founder member of the new NIHR School for Primary Care Research.

His research interests include a focus on effective ways of improving management of long term conditions, with a focus on self-management and behaviour change, as well as the role of patient-centred care. He is very interested in the management of multi-morbidity, especially the combination of physical and mental health problems. He has a long-term interest in the evaluation of psychological therapies for common mental health problems. In methodological terms, he has core expertise in evidence synthesis and randomised controlled trials, although he has dabbled in all areas of health services research over the last 20 years.

As well as his work within the NIHR School for Primary Care Research, he is part of the North West Hub for Trials Methodology Research , the CLAHRC for Greater Manchester  and the Greater Manchester Primary Care Patient Safety Translational Research Centre.  He also has a role at the University of Manchester in the management of postgraduate research.

His University profile can be found here and he is an occasional user of Twitter (@bowercpcman)

Sandra Eldridge

Sandra Eldridge is Professor of Biostatistics at Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry. She has been joint lead of the Centre for Primary Care and Public Health since 2007. The Centre has grown considerably since 2007.

Sandra has a degree in mathematics and spent time teaching mathematics in schools in Nigeria and the UK, conducting demographic research, and teaching undergraduate statistics before leaving work to spend time with her young children in the late 1980s. 

She joined Barts and The London as a medical statistician in 1994, and almost immediately began working in primary care, moving to be part of the then Department of General Practice and Primary Care in 1996. Primary care has been the focus of her work since. She completed a doctorate focused on cluster randomised trials in primary care (rather late in her career) in 2005, and was promoted to a personal chair in 2007 at about the same time as becoming joint lead of the Centre.

Sandra’s major research interests are in cluster randomised trials and complex interventions, although her collaborative research is wide-ranging and she has an extensive portfolio of National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) funded research. She sits on several NIHR funding panels, directs a UK clinical research collaboration registered and NIHR funded trials unit, and is joint lead of the east London arm of Research Design Service London. She currently leads an international collaborative group developing reporting guidance for pilot studies and a sub-group of the initiative to extend the Cochrane Risk of Bias Tool to non-randomised studies and trials with non-standard design. She supervises a number of research students and mentors female academics at Barts and The London, under a scheme precipitated by the institution’s Athena Swan initiative.

Sandra has always been concerned to support those trying to maintain a balance between their core discipline and working in primary care. In 2002, she was instrumental in setting up the Primary Health Care Study Group of the Royal Statistical Society, a group that aims to bring statisticians working in primary care together for mutual encouragement, support and collaboration. Sandra was secretary of this group between 2002 and 2006 and chair between 2009 and 2012. In 2012 she stepped down from the committee to make way for younger members for whom the group was intended.  

Kerry Hood

Kerry Hood is Professor of Statistics in the School of Medicine at Cardiff University. She is Director of the South East Wales Trials Unit (SEWTU) which works predominantly in primary care and was previously deputy head of department of primary care and public health.

Kerry has a degree and PhD in statistics and has worked specialising in primary care since being appointed the first lecturer in statistics in what was then the department of general practice in the University of Wales College of Medicine in 1997.  Since setting up SEWTU in 2006 she has worked more broadly, but her main focus has still been in infections in primary care.

Kerry’s major research interests are in randomised trials in complex environments and populations (many of which need complex interventions) and outcome assessment, although her collaborative research is wide-ranging and she has an extensive portfolio of National Institute of Health Research (NIHR), European Union and charity funded research. She sits on several funding panels, directs the South East Wales Research Design & Conduct Service and is the overarching lead for clinical trials across three UK CRC CTUs based in Cardiff.  She supervises a number of research students (from a variety of clinical and non-clinical disciplines) and mentors academics across schools in Cardiff University. She is also Equality & Diversity lead for her Institute and part of the Athena Swan working group for the School of Medicine.

Kerry has always been keen to establish career pathways for scientists in primary care that develop both their primary care and their core discipline expertise.

David Kessler

David Kessler is a Reader in Primary Care at the Centre of Academic Primary Care, University of Bristol. He has a first degree in English Literature and worked with single homeless alcoholic men before going to medical school at St Bartholomew’s in London. He is trained as a psychiatrist and is a member of both the Royal College of Psychiatrists as well the Royal College of General Practitioners.

He has been a partner in an urban Bristol general practice since 1991. He came into research quite late, writing his first paper in 1999.

He was awarded his MD in 2003 and now spends most of his time in the University, although he sees patients in practice for 3 surgeries a week. He has a substantial teaching commitment and has supervised PhDs, including non-clinical students, and mentored clinical academics. He has sat on NIHR grant awarding bodies and been a member of a NICE guidelines development group.

His research has always grown out of clinical questions, and his central interest is the improvement of care for those with depression and anxiety. However, he has also developed broader interests, including research with a medical anthropological perspective. There are two particular areas where he is research active. The first is increasing access to psychotherapy, using online therapy. The second is improving outcomes for people with treatment resistant depression.

Anne MacFarlane

Anne MacFarlane Ph.D is Professor of Primary Healthcare Research at the Graduate Entry Medical School, University of Limerick. She is the first social scientist to hold a Chair in academic primary care in Ireland. Anne has 20 years' experience of using qualitative research methods with a portfolio of completed health services research projects and educational research projects.

Anne has established an inter-disciplinary primary healthcare group at GEMS with members from general practice, speech and language therapy, physiotherapy, sociology, psychology and biostatistics. The group are leaders in Public and Patient Involvement in research, specifically participatory health research with socially excluded communities. Anne has specialist expertise in migrant health working with key academic, community and policy stakeholders in Ireland and abroad.

Anne graduated with a B.A. (psychology and sociology) from University College Cork in 1992. She completed her M.A. (1995) and Ph.D (1998) in the Department of Health Promotion, NUI Galway. After working as a Research Fellow in University College London for two years (2000-2002), Anne returned to Ireland and held a Health Research Board Health Services Research Fellowship in the Department of General Practice, NUI Galway (2002-2004). She was Lecturer in Primary Care at the Department of General Practice NUI Galway (2004-2011).

Bob McKinley

Bob McKinley is Professor of Education in General Practice at Keele University School of Medicine

He graduated from Queen’s, Belfast in 1982 having intercalated a BSc. He initially followed a hospital career acquiring the MRCP but then moved to general practice and completed his GP training in 1988. He took a clinical research fellow post in Belfast where he did the basic work on his MD which centred on a RCT of peak flow monitoring of asthma in patients recruited from general practice. He was appointed as a clinical senior lecturer in Leicester in 1989 where he finished his MD in 1992. While in Leicester he was a partner in a large inner city practice. He was appointed professor of education in general practice at Keele in 2007 and continues to practice as a GP one day a week in Stoke on Trent

He has followed a twin track academic career developing his skills as a teacher alongside his research portfolio. His research has had a number of major foci: clinical research focusing on respiratory disease but also including end of life care, chronic pain and varicose ulceration, health services research focusing on out of hours care and on educational evaluation and research. Most of his research has combined quantitative and qualitative methods and reached across professional boundaries. His research now focuses on education and the assessment and enhancement of skills, delivery of undergraduate education in general practice and understanding the processes though which students learn.

He has supervised a number of MD and PhD students from medical and nursing backgrounds. He is/has also been a member of the editorial boards of Primary Care Respiratory Journal, BMC Family Practice, Education for Primary Care and Perspectives in Medical Education. He has been a member of the research committee of Asthma UK and an external assessor for professorial appointments in the UK and Asia.

His motivation for mentoring is to help others avoid the errors he has made in his own career mis-management and to help reduce the need for luck on which his own career progression has depended. 

Danielle van der Windt

Danielle van der Windt is an epidemiologist who developed her academic career in Amsterdam (VU University medical centre), leading a research programme on the diagnosis, prognosis and treatment of musculoskeletal disorders and other physical symptoms in primary care. In 2006 she took up a joint appointment in Amsterdam and Keele, with the aim to build on her international experience and develop an international programme of research across the two Centres. She gradually took up more responsibilities at Keele, being involved in both the epidemiology and trials programmes, and was appointed as a fulltime chair in primary care epidemiology in 2009. She is member of the RIs executive management team.

She has successfully supervised 16 PhD students from a range of clinical and methodological backgrounds. She has a strong publication record (>180 publications in internal peer reviewed journals) and has contributed to a large number of successful grants (>18M from NIHR, MRC, Arthritis Research UK and other funders). She has served on the Clinical Studies Subcommittee of Arthritis Research UK (2010-2014) and is currently Contact Editor (Epidemiology) for the European Journal of Epidemiology since 2014 and member of the Cochrane Diagnostic Test Accuracy Editorial Team.

Danielle has a strong interest in research methodology, in particular the concepts, methods, and clinical impact of prognosis research. She leads a 3-day annual international course on prognosis research at Keele. Other interests concern trial methodology and the methodology of systematic reviews of diagnostic, prognostic and intervention research. She provides methodological support to health care professionals and researchers to undertake research on common musculoskeletal pain conditions, and has been involved in the development of clinical guidelines in this field. She is currently developing research describing the ‘phenotypes’ of pain problems (definition and classification of pain in primary care; understanding prognosis and predictors of long-term health outcomes and response to treatment; and optimising usefulness and application of prognostic information in primary care (including the development and evaluation of stratified models of care).

Fiona Wood

Fiona Wood

Fiona Wood is a Senior Lecturer in the Institute of Primary Care and Public Health at Cardiff University.

Fiona’s first degree was in Geography, where she developed her interest in social (and spatial) determinants of health. Following graduation her first job was in the NHS in a department of Public Health Medicine in Gwent Health Authority. In 1995 Fiona moved to an academic research post at Cardiff University’s School of Social Sciences where she worked as Research Associate on a number of short term research contracts. During this period Fiona’s research interests developed in medical sociology and qualitative methods. Fiona was appointed to a lectureship within the School of Medicine at Cardiff University in 2003. In 2013 she was promoted to Senior Lecturer. She has taken two periods of maternity leave and now works part time to enable her to spend some time with her young family. She has been a member of SAPC since 2003 and is a regular attender at SAPC conferences.

Fiona has a broad portfolio of research having received funding from the ESRC, charities such as Bupa Foundation, Health and Care Research Wales, and the NIHR. She also sits on funding panels including the RCGP Scientific Foundation Board and is a regular reviewer for journals within the discipline of primary care. She leads a small team of PhD students and researchers. She is also a personal mentor to undergraduate students within Cardiff University’s School of Medicine.

Fiona has an interest in issues of equality, and represents her Institute on the School’s Equality and Diversity Committee. Fiona has an interest in career development and in supporting other researchers, from a range of disciplinary backgrounds, progress within primary care research.