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Katie Shearn

Doctor Katie Shearn PhD, BSc.

Researcher

Summary

My research interests span cultural, political, organisational and interpersonal factors affecting health and wellbeing. My doctoral studies developed theory and evidence to support services deliver positive youth sexual health services

I am currently researching whole-systems transformations to deliver person-centred public health including for sexual wellbeing and increased levels of physical activity. I am a methods pluralist with an expertise in realist methodologies which are orientated towards the explanation of social phenomena situated within complex systems.

I returned to academia in 2014 following a successful career in contract social and marketing research in the private sector.

  • About

    I am actively involved in research and supervision at both Sheffield Hallam University and in collaboration with other universities. Most of my projects include a realist methodology component and I have contributed methodological advancements in peer-reviewed journal articles and at international conferences.

    1) Sexual health and wellbeing for young people. This includes advising on policy and conducting research on positive sexuality, sexuality education and services for sexual wellbeing. I have contributed to national policy as well as peer reviewed publications and conference presentations. I am interested in the application of the Capabilities Approach as a framework to support young people's sexual health and general wellbeing.

    2) Living well with HIV. This emerging research area acknowledges that people with HIV who are adherent to treatment can live longer lives but often with a range of comorbidities and ill mental health. This programme of work would investigate new models of health care and community led interventions to support people living with HIV to have the best possible quality of life.

    3) Whole-systems transformations. In collaboration with local stakeholders I have developed realist informed theory and evaluation frameworks for transforming systems and processes to support community-led, assets-based or person-centred systems.

    My academic career builds on the successes of a 13 year career in contract social and marketing research where I was responsible for large scale and high profile research projects for clients including the Department of Health and Social Care and the Wellcome Trust.

  • Research

    1) Sexual health and wellbeing for young people. This includes advising on policy and conducting research on positive sexuality, sexuality education and services for sexual wellbeing. I have contributed to national policy as well as peer reviewed publications and conference presentations. I am interested in the application of the Capabilities Approach as a framework to support young people's sexual health and general wellbeing.

    2) Living well with HIV. This emerging research area acknowledges that people with HIV who are adherent to treatment can live longer lives but often with a range of comorbidities and ill mental health. This programme of work would investigate new models of health care and community led interventions to support people living with HIV to have the best possible quality of life.

    3) Whole-systems transformations. In collaboration with local stakeholders I have developed realist informed theory and evaluation frameworks for transforming systems and processes to support community-led, assets-based or person-centred systems.

    My academic career builds on the successes of a 13 year career in contract social and marketing research where I was responsible for large scale and high profile research projects for clients including the Department of Health and Social Care and the Wellcome Trust.

    I am currently working with Public Health England, the English Institute of Sport, Sheffield Accountable Care Partnership, Doncaster Council and the National Centre for Sports and Exercise Medicine.

  • Publications

    Key Publications

    Bellow, B., Cavill, N., Allender, S., Copeland, R., & Shearn, K. (2020). Strategic principles and capacity building for a whole-of-systems approaches to physical activity. In Bellew, B., Nau, T., Smith, B.J., & Bauman, A. (Eds.) Getting Australia Active III. A systems approach to physical activity for policy makers. The Australian Prevention Partnership Centre and The University of Sydney

    Shearn, K., Crabbe, T., Edgar, K., Frith, G., & Christy, E. (2020). Greater Manchester Local Pilot Process Evaluation April 2020. Substance.

    Shearn, K., Piercy, H., Allmark, P., & Hirst, J. (2019). Clarity, conviction and coherence supports buy-in to positive youth sexual health services: focused results from a realist evaluation. BMC Health Services Research, 19, 503. http://doi.org/10.1186/s12913-019-4298-4

    Shearn, K., Allmark, P., Piercy, H., & Hirst, J. (2017). Building realist programme theory for large complex and messy interventions. International Journal of Qualitative Methods, 16 (1), 1-11. http://doi.org/10.1177/1609406917741796

    Shearn, K., Piercy, H., Allmark, P., & Hirst, J. (2016). Provision of positive sexual health services for young people: a realist evaluation. The Lancet, 388 (Supp2), S105. http://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(16)32341-8

    Journal articles

    Walker, S., Piercy, H., Shearn, K., & Acton, F. (2019). What consultation resources are available to support delivery of integrated sexual and reproductive health services? A scoping review. BMJ Sexual and Reproductive Health. http://doi.org/10.1136/bmjsrh-2019-200414

    Theses / Dissertations

    Shearn, K.M. (2018). Delivering positive youth sexual health services: a realist evaluation. (Doctoral thesis). Supervised by Piercy, H., Allmark, P., & Hirst, J. http://doi.org/10.7190/shu-thesis-00062

    Presentations

    Shearn, K., Dalkin, S., Danks, K., Allmark, P., & Shearn, K. (2021). Using Models in Realist Research. Presented at: International realist conference 2021, Dublin, Ireland, 2021

    Posters

    Shearn, K., Piercy, H., Allmark, P., & Hirst, J. (2018). Interpretations of 'positive' approaches to youth sexual health services: concept defining as one phase of a realist evaluation.

  • Postgraduate supervision

    Natalie Grinvalds - Full Time (Y2):
    A realist account of the co-location of NHS clinics within leisure centres to place physical activity at the heart of the NHS
    2nd Supervisor

    Jenny Longden - Part Time (Y2):
    What makes effective Advanced Nursing Practitioners, for whom, under what circumstances and why?
    2nd Supervisor

    Laura Makey - Part Time (Y1):
    A realist evaluation of community based support services for people living with HIV
    2nd Supervisor

    John Downey - Part Time (Y2):
    Exercise referral schemes: A realist evaluation.
    Methods advisor

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