People & Animals & Their Health in Society (PATHS)

Image showing the PATHS Banner


The PATHS group undertakes multidisciplinary research examining health in people and animals. We are particularly interested in exploring the interplay between people and animals, and the impacts on health, disease, and wellbeing. Our approach is grounded in the recognition that human behaviour is a key driver of changes in health (of both humans and other animals), and that diseases, and that health ‘risks’ affect human behaviour.

These effects operate at a range of levels, from the individual (where behaviour may effect, for example, health due to changes in lifestyle or altered risk of transmission of an infectious agent through a community) through the institutional/community/regional scale (such as the organizational identification of, and response to, health threats, including public health agencies and the media), to the global scale (where changes to transportation, trade, policy and the political economy can change disease epidemiology globally).

Understanding these processes across these scales informs policy and practice, and permits better surveillance, management of human and animal health.

Within our research we draw on a wide range of disciplinary approaches, including: epidemiology, mathematics and statistics; and, sociology, anthropology and psychology, often incorporating participatory methods.

The PATHS group run the Qualitative Research Methods for Animal Health (QRMAH) Network to foster to use of these approaches in animal health research. Find out more about the network and its activities on the QRMAH webpages.