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Professor Sarah Atkinson


BA Anthropology, MSc Human Nutrition, PhD Anthropology

AffiliationRoom numberTelephone
Professor in the Department of Geography408+44 (0) 191 33 41871
Professor , Geographies of Life408+44 (0) 191 33 41871
Professor in Tipping Points Research Project408+44 (0) 191 33 41871
Associate Director in the Institute for Medical HumanitiesCA128, Caedmon Building, Leazes Road, Durham, DH1 1SZ+44 (0) 191 33 48144
Fellow of the Wolfson Research Institute for Health and Wellbeing +44 (0) 191 33 41871

Research interests

  • Wellbeing and Community Wellbeing
  • Critical Medical Humanities
  • Spaces and practices of care of the body
  • Arts, health and wellbeing

Awarded Grants

  • 2021: Extension Grant for the Institute for Medical Humanities, Durham(£12070.46 from Wellcome Trust)
  • 2020: Understanding and modelling the relationship between individual and place-based community wellbeing(£2760.57 from )
  • 2015: Bringing wellbeing to community(£87250.40 from ESRC)

Esteem Indicators

  • 2019: Key-note speaker 19th International Medical Geography Symposium, Queenstown, New Zealand:
  • 2019: Key-note speaker, Conference on Existential Medical Humanities, Södertörn University, Stockholm, Sweden Swedish Network for Medical Humanities:
  • 2016: Key-note speaker, ISRF funding workshop on 'Financialisation, Social Investment and Wellbeing' Roskilde, Denmark:
  • 2015: Invited key-note speaker at the International Workshop: Medical humanities: Exploring advantages and disadvantages in an emerging interdisciplinary field, University of Lund, Sweden. :
  • 2014: Invited speaker: The rise of well-being in public health, WHO Copenhagen.:
  • 2014: Invited member: WHO international steering group, the cultural determinants of wellbeing, WHO Copenhagen:
  • 2014: Invited speaker, seminar series on Politics of Wellbeing:
  • 2014: Invited speaker: History, humanities and global health, WHO Geneva.:
  • 2014: Key-note speaker: Annual Conference of the Nordic Network for Health Research within Social Sciences (NNHSH), Helsinki, Finland:


Chapter in book

Edited book

  • Atkinson, S. & Hunt, R. (2019). Geohumanities and Health. Global Perspectives on Health Geography. Switzerland: Springer.
  • Whitehead, A., Woods, A., Atkinson, S., Macnaughton, J. & Richards, J. (2016). The Edinburgh Companion to the Critical Medical Humanities. Edinburgh Companions to Literature. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.
  • Atkinson, S., Fuller, S. & Painter, J. (2012). Wellbeing and place. Farnham: Ashgate.

Journal Article

Newspaper/Magazine Article

  • Coyle, L.A. & Atkinson, S. (2017). “I sometimes refer to myself as having OCD and sometimes refer to myself as having an eating disorder.”. thebmjopinion


Supervision students