Emeritus Professor of Health History
Chair in Health History
T: +44 (0) 141 331 3325
My research interests range broadly across modern British history. In particular, my work has focussed on the history of health care provision and social policy, with an associated emphasis on the history of child welfare. Specific research topics have included: municipal medicine in inter-war England and Wales; child evacuation policies in wartime Scotland; and welfare provision in ‘peripheral’ areas of the United Kingdom and Europe.
Specialist areas: Welfare in modern Britain and Scotland, especially the health services; the Scottish Poor Law; the history of childhood; the history of child psychiatry.
Member, Wellcome Trust Medical History and Humanities Interview Committee, September 2011 to date
Distinguished Visiting Fellow, University of Auckland, March 2012
Research Associate, Wellcome Unit for the History of Medicine, University of Oxford, October 2012 to date
Article in Medical History (2008) selected as one of journal’s ‘Highlights of a Decade’ – see
and associated blog and podcast
'Child Guidance in Britain, 1918-1955: The Dangerous Age of Childhood', Pickering and Chatto, 2013.
‘An Introduction to Research into the History of British Healthcare’, electronic publication, Intute: Arts and Humanities, www.intute.ac.uk/themes/historical/healthcare ‘Sickness and Health,’ in L. Abrams and C. Brown (eds.), A History of Everyday Life in Twentieth Century Scotland, Edinburgh, 2010, 228-254.
'Cradle to Grave: Municipal Medicine in Interwar England and Wales', with A. Levene, M Powell and B Taylor, Oxford 2011.
‘The Provision and Control of Medical Relief: Urban Central Scotland in the Late Nineteenth Century’ in (ed) Mark Freeman et al, Medicine, Law, and Public Policy in Scotland, 1850-1980: Essays Presented to Anne Crowther, Dundee, Dundee University Press, 2011
‘Child Guidance in Britain, 1927-1951: From Voluntarism to the Welfare State?’, in (ed) Colin Rochester, George Campbell Gosling, Alison Penn, and Meta Zimmeck, Understanding the Roots of Voluntary Action: Historical Perspectives on Current Social Policy, Brighton, Sussex Academic Press, 2011
‘The Medical Mission of British Child Guidance, 1918-1950: Theory and Practice’, in (ed) Martin Dinges and Robert Jütte, The Transmission of Health Practices (1500-2000), Stuttgart, Steiner Verlag, 2011
‘”The Dangerous Age of Childhood”: Child Guidance and the “Normal” Child in Great Britain, 1920-1950’, Paedagogica Historica, 47, 6, 2011
'History: A Social Science Neglected by Other Social Sciences (and Why It Should Not Be)', Contemporary Social Science, 7, 1, 2012 (with Virginia Berridge)
‘"The Dangerous Age of Childhood": Child Guidance in Britain, ca.1918-1955’, www.historyandpolicy.org – posted online October 2012
‘The Scientific Claims of British Child Guidance, 1918-1945', British Journal for the History of Science, 42, 3, 2009
‘The Political Economy of the British National Health Service, 1945-1975: Opportunities and Constraints?’, Medical History, 52, 4, 2008 (Selected as one of the journal's 'highlights of a decade')
‘Central and Local Government and the Provision of Municipal Medicine, 1919-39’, English Historical Review, CXXII,.496, 2007 (with Becky Taylorand Martin, Powell)
‘The Development of Municipal Hospital Care in English County Boroughs in the 1930s’, Medical History, 50, 1, 2006 (with Alysa Levene and Martin Powell)
‘An “Enigma to Their Parents”: The Founding and Aims of the Notre Dame Child Guidance Clinic, Glasgow’, The Innes Review, 57, 1, 2006
‘Child Guidance in Inter-War Scotland: International Context and Domestic Concerns’, Bulletin of the History of Medicine, 80, 3, 2006
‘”The Finest Municipal Hospital Service in the World"?: Contemporary Perceptions of the London County Council’s Hospital Provision, 1929-1939’, Urban History, 32, 2, 2005
‘Investment Choices? County Borough Health Expenditure in Interwar England and Wales’, Urban History, 32, 3, 2005 (with Alysa Levene and Martin Powell)
‘Death in Llantrisant: Henry Williams and the New Poor Law in Wales’, Rural History, 15, 1, 2004 (with Steven King)
‘Patterns of Municipal Health Expenditure in Interwar England’, Bulletin of the History of Medicine, 78, 3, 2004 (with Alysa Levene and Martin Powell)
'Taking Stock: Scottish Social Welfare after Devolution', Bristol, The Policy Press, 2004
‘Angels or Aliens? Refugee Nurses in Britain, 1938 to 1942’, Medical History, 47, 2, 2003
‘The National Health Service in Scotland, 1947-1974: Scottish or British?’, Historical Research, 76, 193, 2003
‘Ideology and Process in the Creation of the British National Health Service’, Journal of Policy History, 14, 2, 2002
'"Christ's Kingdom in Scotland": Scottish Presbyterianism, Social Reform, and the Edwardian Crisis', Twentieth Century British History, 12, 1, 2001
'The Commonwealth Fund of New York and Child Health in Austria in the 1920s' in (ed) Klaus Petersen, John Stewart and Michael Kuur Sorensen, 'American Foundations and the European Welfare States', Odense, University Press of Southern Denmark, 2013.