Dr Stuart McClean

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  • Qualifications:BA(Hons), PhD
  • Position:Associate Professor in Public Health (Health and Wellbeing)
  • Department:HAS - Health and Social Sciences
  • Telephone:+4411732 88783
  • Email:Stuart.Mcclean@uwe.ac.uk
  • Social media: LinkedIn logo

About me

​​​Stuart McClean ​is Associate Professor in Public Health at UWE Bristol. He leads the 'Health and Wellbeing' research theme for the Centre for Public Health and Wellbeing​. His books include Folk Healing and Health Care Practices in Britain and Ireland: stethoscopes, wands and crystals (Berghahn, 2010), Thinking About the Lifecourse: a psychosocial introduction (Palgrave, 2014), and Research Methods for Public Health (Sage, 2019).

Stuart is the author of over fifty peer-reviewed publications, and his research has been published in a number of journals, including Sociology of Health and Illness, Journal of Public Health, Health, Qualitative Health Research, Health, Risk and Society, BMC Health Services Research, Medical Anthropology, and Social Theory and Health.

Stuart is a Co-Editor of Health: an interdisciplinary journal for the social study of health, illness and medicine (Sage Publications).

Stuart leads on a number of postgraduate research degrees inititives in the university. He is the Postgraduate Research Degrees Coordinator for the School of Health and Social Wellbeing, as well as the Pathway Lead (Health and Wellbeing) for the ESRC South West Doctoral Training Partnership.

Stuart is an Associate at Supersum, a wicked issues agency.

Area of expertise

My research interests are the wider health and wellbeing culture and the ways this manifests in varied wellbeing practices, forms of agency, innovation and creativity in Western societies. `What does it mean for the individual to be well and do well? How do individuals and communities work at 'doing well' and 'being well'? How do communities thrive and improve wellbeing? I am interested in the interconnected nature of these experiences, and in explaining the current socio-cultural forces and trends that underpin it.

My work has three main components:

The first focuses on the ways in which marginalised and disadvantaged social groups (e.g. migrants) have been denied agency and access to wellbeing in societies, and consider the social consequences of this in areas such as health care access and structural inequalities.​

The second strand considers the ways that communities address health and wellbeing grand challenges, such as healthy ageing, in ways that mirror non-traditional approaches, using often innovative and 'upstream' public health approaches to enable wellbeing progression and agency in more disadvantaged communities.

Finally, I am interested in non-traditional approaches to health and wellbeing in the West, in the form of alternative and complementary health practices. This work explores ideas about the socio-cultural relations of healing and wellbeing, as well as alternative wellbeing approaches which invoke ideas about agency, innovation and individualism amongst practitioners and users. It also concerns the nature of victim blaming and stigma, personal responsibility and ideologies of health and wellbeing.

Some recent projects:

Let's Gather In

Medievals and moderns in conversation


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