Photo of Professor Sally Sheard

Professor Sally Sheard BA PhD

Executive Dean, Institute of Population Health & Andrew Geddes and John Rankin Professor of Modern History Institute of Population Health


Personal Statement

Sally Sheard is a health policy analyst and historian with a research focus in the interface between expert advisers and policymakers. She is Executive Dean of the Institute of Population Health at the University of Liverpool, and a Wellcome Trust Senior Investigator, leading an eight year project (2015-2023): [The Governance of Health: medical, economic and managerial expertise in British health policy since 1948]. Sally holds the Andrew Geddes and John Rankin Chair of Modern History.
Sally has authored books and articles on the political economy of health and social welfare, the development of the NHS and the medical civil service, especially the role of the Chief Medical Officer [CMO]. In 2013 she published the first biography of Brian Abel-Smith - The Passionate Economist: how Brian Abel-Smith shaped global health and social welfare (Bristol, 2013). Recent studies have focused on waiting lists, the relationship between hospital acquired infections and length of stay, the policy dynamics of Covid-19, the development of genetics and genomics policy in the UK.
Sally was founding Director in 2015 of the [Centre for Health, Medical and Environmental Humanities]. She has extensive experience of using history in public and policy engagement, and serves as a senior associate for [History and Policy]. She works with local health authorities and government organisations providing historical context for contemporary health policy issues. She has written for and appeared in television and radio programmes, including Health Before the NHS, A House Through Time, Who Do You Think You Are?, How the Victorians Built Britain, and Woman's Hour. In 2018, to mark the seventieth anniversary of the NHS, she was commissioned to write and present the twenty part BBC Radio 4 series [National Health Stories].ORCID (<div itemscope itemtype=""><a itemprop="sameAs" content="" href="" target="orcid.widget" rel="noopener noreferrer" style="vertical-align:top;"><img src="" style="width:1em;margin-right:.5em;" alt="ORCID iD icon"></a></div>)

Prizes or Honours

  • Visiting Scholar (2015)
  • Visiting Senior Fellow (2009)