Professor Flowers completed both his degree and PhD at the University of Sheffield. Since then he has worked at both the Medical Research Council’s Social and Public Health Sciences unit and at Glasgow Caledonian University. Throughout his career he has maintained an interest in the impact of academic research, focussing upon its applied value, either through influencing policy development or through his charity work. He is currently a Trustee of the National AIDS Trust. Throughout his career to date Professor Flowers has been keen to explore methodological and theoretical innovation. He has a particular interest in mixed methods and has been to explore the possibilities of using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA) within the applied research.