Current projects

Mood, Mobility and Place

This is a three-year research project funded by the EPSRC through Lifelong Health and Wellbeing and a multi-disciplinary collaboration bringing together the University of Edinburgh (lead); Heriot-Watt University; King’s College, London and SEI. The project explores how places can be designed collaboratively to make mobility easy, enjoyable and meaningful for older people. The project builds on evidence that how we experience environments influences our mood and, in turn, our willingness to be active. Partnered by 16 stakeholder bodies, it involves co-design with a range of participants, including stroke survivors and people with Alzheimer’s, as well as innovative mobile neural imaging methods to explore real-time emotional responses to place. Working with the Lothian Birth Cohorts of people in their 70s and 90s, the research will be the first to consider the influence of local environments in which people have resided from childhood. The project starts in September 2013.

Woods in and Around Towns

This project looks at influences on psychological well-being in deprived urban areas. It’s a four-year longitudinal assessment of the effectiveness of Forestry Commission Scotland’s Woods In and Around Towns (WIAT) programme to improve quality of life in deprived communities along Scotland’s ‘central belt’.  Funded by the NIHR this project is looking specifically at the impact of WIAT on the psychological well-being and stress levels of people living in deprived urban communities. Running from 2012 to 2015, it involves researchers from the Universities of Edinburgh (lead), Glasgow, Heriot-Watt, Queen Mary (London) and SEI.