Photo of Gillian Bendelow

Gillian Bendelow
Associate (Sociology)
Director of Internationalisation


Gillian Bendelow is an established medical sociologist who has made significant research contributions to the fields of chronic pain and ‘contested’ illness conditions; mental health and emotional wellbeing; health promotion and lay concepts of health and illness. Core aspects of her substantive interests in emotion, embodiment, gender and childhood overlap with other areas of social science, medicine and humanities, and this dialogue is reflected in her current work which is concerned with understanding models of health and illness in contemporary healthcare, with a strong focus on explaining and transcending the often unhelpful divisions and polarisation between 'the natural' and 'the social', biological and cultural, arts and sciences.

Gillian is regularly invited as a keynote/plenary speaker to international academic and policy-oriented events and has received past external research funding from the ESRC, NHS, EU, the Wellcome Trust and cancer charities. She has existing research collaborations with Warwick University Medical School (Values-Based-Practice) University of Luxembourg ( ESF interdisciplinary Pain and Suffering Forum), Monash University, Australia (international Healthy Living and Citizenship forum) and Waikato Medical School, New Zealand (mental and emotional healthcare strategies).

In September 2012, Gillian was awarded a BA/Leverhulme Senior Research Fellowship and is working in collaboration with SussexPartnership NHS Foundation Trust and Sussex Police to understand the social patterning and decision-making processes of the high rates of police detentions under the Mental Health Act ( section 136) across Sussex. From July 2013, this project has been accepted onto the NIHR portfolio and is supported by the Mental Health Research Network