The project has a distinguished Advisory Board to help formulate research strategy, review the project findings at different stages, and develop the dissemination strategy.
Paul Cann has recently retired as Chief Executive of Age UK Oxfordshire. His research and policy interests include pensioner poverty, loneliness and social exclusion and care issues. Mr Cann is a founding member of the Campaign to End Loneliness, and co-author of Safeguarding the Convoy: A Call to Action from the Campaign to End Loneliness (2011).
Thomas Dixon is Professor of History and a founder member of the Centre for the History of the Emotions at Queen Mary University of London. He is a historian of medicine, philosophy and science, with particular interest in the history of the emotions. His most recent book is Weeping Britannia: Portrait of a Nation in Tears (2015). He directs the project ‘Living with Feeling’, with which this project is partnered.
Rhodri Hayward is Reader in History and Director of the Centre for the History of the Emotions at Queen Mary University of London. He is a historian of psychiatry and neurobiology whose publications include Psychiatry in Britain (2013) and The Transformation of the Psyche in British Primary Care (2014).
Colin Jones, CBE, FBA, is Professor of History at Queen Mary University of London. He specialises in French cultural, social and medical history and his many books include The Medical World of Early Modern France (co-author, 1998), Paris, Biography of a City (2004), and The Smile Revolution in 18th Century Paris (2014). Professor Jones is Past President of the Royal Historical Society.
Thomas Laqueur is Helen Fawcett Professor of History at University of California Berkeley. His many publications include Solitary Sex: a Cultural History of Masturbation (2003) and The Work of the Dead: a Cultural History of Mortal Remains (2015) which won five major prizes.
Hilary Marland is Professor of History and Director of the Centre for the History of Medicine at the University of Warwick. Her most recent book is Health and Girlhood in Britain, 1874-1920 (2013) Professor Marland is Principal Investigator on the Wellcome Trust project, ‘Prisoners, Medical Care and Entitlement to Health in England and Ireland, 1850-2000’.
Stefan Priebe is a consultant psychiatrist, Professor for Social and Community Psychiatry, and Director of the Unit for Social and Community Psychiatry at Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry (Queen Mary University of London). Problems of social isolation and loneliness among people with mental disorders are among Professor Priebe’s many specialisms; he has published numerous articles on this topic and runs a befriending programme for psychiatric patients out of his Unit.
Sally Shuttleworth, FBA, is Professorial Fellow in English at Oxford and Director of the European Research Council-funded project, ‘Diseases of Modern Life: 19th Century Perspectives’. Her most recent book is The Mind of the Child: Child Development in Literature, Science and Medicine, 1840-1900 (2010).
Christina Victor is Professor of Gerontology and Public Health at Brunel University. She is a Fellow of the Faculty of Public Health and an Academician of the Academy of Social Sciences. Professor Victor has published many books and articles in the field of gerontology, including many on loneliness among the elderly. From May 2015 to January 2017 she ran an ESRC Seminar Series titled ‘Reimagining Loneliness’. She is Editor of Ageing and Society, the leading social gerontology journal in the UK, and an active member of the Campaign to End Loneliness.
The project is working with several creative partners to produce artistic responses to questions of solitude and loneliness.
Natalie Steed is an audio and radio producer. Her award-winning work has been recognised at the British Podcast Awards, the Audio Production Awards and the UK Podcast Awards. She made the Radio 4 series A Short History of Solitude with Thomas Dixon, and produced the Places of Solitude podcast series with our project team.
Anna Harpin is Associate Professor of Theatre and Performance at the University of Warwick. She is also the co-director of the theatre company Idiot Child, who are working with our project team and research network whilst developing a new show about loneliness. She works as writer and director with the company.
Susie Riddell is an actor and voice artist, trained at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama. She is the co-director of the theatre company Idiot Child, who are working with our project team and research network whilst developing a new show about loneliness. She performs in the company’s productions.
Sophie Burrows is an illustrator and author. She won the V&A Student Illustrator of the Year award in 2019 for Crushing, a wordless, short-form graphic novel exploring feelings of loneliness. She is working on illustrations stemming from the research of our project team and from conversations produced as part of a Wellcome-funded Diversity & Inclusion initiative.
Rachel Long is a poet and the founder of Octavia Poetry Collective for Womxn of Colour, housed at the Southbank Centre in London. She was shortlisted for the Forward Prizes Best First Collection with My Darling from the Lions. She is facilitating workshops and conversations produced with our project as part of a Wellcome-funded Diversity & Inclusion initiative.
Distinguished Visiting Fellows
The project hosts a number of Distinguished Visiting Fellows at Queen Mary University of London. Their fellowships allow for collaboration with the work of the project team and research network.
2019/2020 Distinguished Visiting Fellow
Amy Hungerford is the Executive Vice President of Arts and Sciences, Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, and Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University. Her fellowship focused on her current project on acts of solitude in American literature and culture from the 19th century to the present and what relevance – with their ancient and modern tributaries, from Buddhist, Christian, psychological, poetic, disciplinary, and social-theoretical sources – they have for our conception of social life.
The project involves an international network of researchers investigating aspects of solitude and loneliness.
The network comprises researchers from across the humanities, and the social and medical sciences, as well as clinicians, campaigners and policy advisors. You can read more about their research here.