The Relationship between Poverty and Wellbeing

This seminar is similar in nature to seminar 1, drawing on multi-disciplinary international and national perspectives but examining the relationship between poverty and children's mental health and wellbeing. You can find information on the speakers, links to their presentations, and recordings of their contributions below.


Michael Smith - 'Capability and Adversity: reframing the "causes of the causes" for mental health'

"Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) offer an important, if incomplete, perspective on childhood development and some adult difficulties. But they need to be considered within a broader frame, such as Nussbaum's ten Capabilities. Such a reframing helps not only to understand ACEs in context, but to direct us towards more holistic and effective responses."


Dr Duncan Booker: Duncan manages the sustainability and resilience agenda for Glasgow City Council.  He is responsible for ensuring that the city both reduces its carbon emissions and plans for the local weather impacts of global climate change. He also leads on Glasgow’s membership of the Rockefeller Foundation’s 100 Resilient Cities network. He has more than twenty years’ experience in local government policy development and previously served as an advisor to the Leader of the Council.  Duncan was also Glasgow’s co-ordinator for its membership of the WHO European Healthy Cities network so has a strong interest in how a focus on sustainability, health and resilience can improve urban quality of life. He is a graduate of the universities of Oxford and Glasgow.

"Cities manage to be both the locus of and solution to many of the challenges which we face around mental health.  Glasgow's transatlantic conversation with Pittsburgh has helped each city to reflect on its shared post-industrial history, how it can engage better with communities, and how both can draw on local assets to build a more sustainable, more just and more resilient place.  That engagement has helped to ensure that mental health issues are a key element of the Resilient Communities theme of Glasgow's Community Plan."

Dr Trevor Lakey: Trevor leads the health improvement programmes for mental health, alcohol and drugs for NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, with a strong focus on addressing inequalities and mobilising diverse assets for health. This role spans the life-course, with significant partnership based work with in the arena of children and young people’s wellbeing.  The approach includes development and collaborative implementation of a framework for mental health improvement. With previous roles including community based health improvement and Healthy Cities coordination, and more recently an active participation in the Pittsburgh-Glasgow Partnership, that has seen the two post-industrial cities collaborate on issues around resilience, wellbeing and future economy.”



Dr Louise Marryat: Louise is currently a Research Fellow in Pediatric Learning Difficulties and Neurodevelopmental Disorders, based in the Salvesen Mindroom Centre within the University of Edinburgh. Louise is a quantitative researcher with a background in sociology, public health and statistics. Her research has primarily focussed on the use of longitudinal and routine datasets to explore a diverse set of topics around child and maternal health. She is particularly interested in early child development, particularly in relation to neurodevelopmental disorders and mental health. Louise has a Masters in Research Methods from Durham University, and a Ph.D. in Psychological Medicine from the University of Glasgow.

"Children from disadvantaged backgrounds start school with poorer mental health and levels of mental health difficulties get worse over the first 3 years. What can we do to change this?"



Newly published paper 

L.Marryat & J.Frank. Factors associated with adverse childhood experiences in Scottish children: a prospective cohort study. BMJ Paediatrics Open, 2019


Professor Matthew Smith: Matthew is Professor of Health History within the Centre for the Social History of Healthcare and Vice Dean Research for the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of Strathclyde.  He is author of An Alternative History of Hyperactivity: Food Additives and the Feingold Diet (2011), Hyperactive: The Controversial History of ADHD (2012) and Another Person’s Poison: A History of Food Allergy (2015), and co-editor of Deinstitutionalisation and After: Post-War Psychiatry in the Western World (2016), Proteins, Pathologies and Politics: Dietary Innovation and Disease from the Nineteenth Century (2018) and Preventing Mental Illness: Past, Present and Future (2018).

Sarah Ogdon: Sarah Ogdon was formerly Headteacher at Pinkie Primary School, Midlothian, and worked with Professor Matthew Smith to take forward a SUII project focusing on children’s resilience - The Pinkie Resilience Project: Enhancing Equality, Boosting Wellbeing and Realising Potential in Scottish Schools

"When a flower doesn’t bloom you fix the environment, NOT the flower." - Sarah Ogdon (Head Teacher, Pinkie St Peter's Primary School)



Professor Jane Callaghan: Professor Callaghan is the Director of the Centre for Child Wellbeing and Protection. She is a psychologist and interdisciplinary researcher, with an established record of research in areas related to childhood, violence, family life, relationships, discrimination and exclusion, and mental health and identity. Two clear strands are in evidence in her research – research focused on violence, health, children’s mental health, social vulnerability and family life, and a related strand focused on gender, professional identities, and ethnicity. She has been principal investigator on the four nation European Commission funded project “Understanding Agency and Resistance Strategies – Children’s Experiences of Domestic Violence”, the largest qualitative study of children who live with domestic violence conducted to date. This project is currently extended through the Big Lottery Funded ‘She’ Programme, which provides whole system support for families seeking an end to domestic violence. Current and recent projects include supporting care leavers’ engagement with Higher Education, support needs for women and infants after domestic abuse, and programmes to reduce young children's risk in relation to abuse. In addition, she has completed projects focused on mental health services for looked after children and young offenders, the transformation of mental health services to increase young people’s participation in the interventions offered to them, creative interventions with young people excluded from education, and young care leavers’ engagement with higher education.She has published in a range of international journals, as well as numerous peer reviewed book chapters, and two books (one published, one due for publication in 2018. She is editor of the Journal of Gender studies, and an editorial board member for the Journal of Family Violence.