Linda Bauld

Bruce and John Usher Professor of Public Health


Linda joined the University of Edinburgh in November 2018 from the University of Stirling. She has previously worked at the Universities of Kent, Glasgow and Bath. From 2014 to 2021 she combined her academic roles with serving as Cancer Research UK's cancer prevention advisor.

Professor Bauld is a behavioural scientist with a PhD in social policy. Her research focuses on two main areas: the evaluation of complex public health interventions; and the use of evidence to inform health policy. She has conducted studies on drug and alcohol use, inequalities in health, overweight and obesity, smoking cessation and more recently on Covid-19. She led the first study of the UK's national stop smoking services when they were established in 1998. She has also played a significant role in the monitoring and evaluation of a range of tobacco control policies, and served as the UK government's scientific adviser on tobacco control from 2006 to 2010.

Examples of previous work include: authoring the 3 year review of smokefree legislation in England (published by the Department of Health in 2011); leading (with David Tappin) the world's largest trial of financial incentives for smoking cessation in pregnancy (published 2015, with results from a multi-centre trial due in 2022); playing a key role in developing smoking cessation in pregnancy guidance in England (2010) and for the World Health Organisation (2013-14); coordinating the development of an independent alcohol strategy for the UK ('Health First', published in March 2013); leading a national review of smoking cessation services for the Scottish government (2013-2014); chairing the NICE programme development group on tobacco harm reduction (2011-2013), and acting as spokesperson for CRUK's obesity policy work in Scotland through the charity's 'Scale Down Cancer' campaign (2016-2020). In 2017 she and colleagues were awarded a Global Challenges Research Fund grant to address tobacco use in Africa and South Asia and Professor Bauld now leads a team or researchers in six UK and eight overseas research organisations to build capacity in tobacco control research in low and middle income countries.

Her current focus is on aligning communicable and non-communicable disease responses within public health. This includes leading the 10 University SPECTRUM Consortium and serving as adviser to the Scottish Parliament on Covid-19.

SPECTRUM website

Responsibilities & affiliations

Professor Bauld is Co-Director, along with Professor David Weller, of the Centre for Population Health Sciences within the Usher Institute. She is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh, the Royal Society of Edinburgh, the Academy of Social Sciences and the UK Faculty of Public Health. Linda is also a Trustee of Diabetes UK and the Institute of Alcohol Studies, as well as a Board member of the Canadian Institutes for Health Research Institute of Population and Public Health.

In 2021 she was awarded an OBE for her services to guiding public health responses to and public understanding of Covid-19.

View all 310 publications on Research Explorer