EPSRC Our Health


Dr Helen Szoor-McElhinney created and leads The EPSRC Our Health Interdisciplinary Community-University Research Programme. Our Health harnesses the power of interdisciplinary community-based research to address health inequalities at a local and global level.

Dr Helen Szoor-McElhinney

Over recent years Helen has brought together academics, clinicians and public engagement expertise from across Europe and the UK to take Our Health from an exciting concept to inception. In 2017, she was awarded an Institute of Academic Development grant to conduct a university wide consultation process around Our Health and engaged learning and teaching. She formed and led an Our Health Advisory Group to provide expert perspectives and guidance. In 2018, Helen secured EPSRC funding to establish and maintain Our Health until 2023. Our Health (Science Shop Model) has been used as a key strategic objective within the University of Edinburgh’s Public Engagement with Research Strategy. It has also been embraced by NHS Lothian and is being used to drive patient centred research forward. Our Health acts as a bridge between The University of Edinburgh, NHS Lothian, Edinburgh City Council and the community with the aim of improved health literacy and reduced health inequality at its heart.

I am delighted that Our Health has been so well received by community partners, students, clinicians and academics across the University. It is delivering enriched experiential learning for all participants and creating relationships that mean so much to everyone involved. It's the wonderful, trusting relationships that are nurtured and valued between partners that make Our Health successful.

Dr Helen Szoor-McElhinneyOur Health Founder and Lead

Liam Gilchrist

Liam Gilchrist portrait photo

Liam Gilchrist is a Research Associate and PhD student with EPSRC Our Health, where he leads a new interdisciplinary community-led participatory action research project. This research will answer community questions about NHS Lothian remote hospital care for people living with complex health needs.  

Liam joined Our Health in 2020 as a Research Assistant on a PTAS project exploring interdisciplinarity and community based participatory research (CBPR) in Science Shop health research. In 2021 Liam co-designed and now leads a CBPR project with NHS Lothian answering patient and community questions about remote outpatient hospital care. This research is co-created with local community partners in central Scotland (Breathe Easy East Lothian, Breathe Easy Fife & Catch Your Breath). In September 2022, Liam will begin a PhD with the School of Health in Social Sciences, evaluating CBPR as a model for interdisciplinary healthcare research in comparative contexts. In this PhD research, Liam will explore CBPR processes, practice and context through a comparative examination of developing Our Health research. Liam also acts as co-lead of EPSRC Our Health (2022-2023).