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Chik Collins


1989 …2019
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Personal profile


I am Professor of Applied Social Science and Assistant Dean for Research and Enterprise in the School of Media, Culture and Society at the University of the West of Scotland.

I studied Social Science, specialising in Social Theory, at Paisley College of Technology (graduating 1987), and was later sponsored by the Scottish Special Housing Association/Scottish Homes to study for the Postgraduate Diploma in Housing Administration at the University of Stirling (graduating 1991). I returned to the University of Paisley in 1993 to undertake a PhD in Political Sociology, which I completed in 1997 – and published as Language, Ideology and Social Consciousness: Developing a Sociohistorical Approach (Ashgate, 1999).

I have worked at the Paisley Campus of UWS since 1996, and am now a highly experienced applied social science academic and researcher, with a sustained track record of teaching excellence and collaborative and interdisciplinary research on key social and economic issues. I have extensive experience of working ‘beyond academia’ with a wide range of organisations across sectors and at different scales.

In 2011-12 I was co-creator of the pioneering UWS-Oxfam Partnership ‘for a more equitable and sustainable Scotland’, which I continue to lead on behalf of UWS. My recent collaborative research (with NHS Health Scotland, Glasgow Centre for Population Health and others) has focused, inter alia, on the public policy causes of the phenomenon of ‘excess mortality’ in contemporary Scotland and Glasgow, and has made a substantial contribution to the progress from description to explanation of that phenomenon.

Area of academic expertise - outline

I have published extensively on the economic, social and political development of Scotland in the 20th Century and beyond, looking at different times at industrial policy, housing and urban policy, community development and regional policy. My work has reflected on the role of language in processes of social change, and has contributed to theoretical discussions relevant to that – in particular by developing a critique of ‘critical discourse analysis’ and developing an alternative ‘cultural-historical’ approach. Over the past decade, I have published on health inequalities, and have collaborated with others in developing an explanation for the phenomenon of ‘excess mortality’ in contemporary Scotland and Glasgow.

Target collaborative organisations

British Academy; Leverhulme; ESRC and others

Current research activities

My recent research has focussed principally on health and health inequalities, with a particular focus on the phenomenon of 'excess mortality' in contemporary Scotland and Glasgow, and the role of public policy at various scales - particularly the 'regional' and urban scales - in its causation. I am currently leading a British Academy/Leverhulme funded project which is further developing this work.

Current teaching activities and interests

I currently teach on the MSc Applied Social Science Programme at the University of the West of Scotland, and also teach into the Global Health Programme at York University, Toronto.

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Health Medicine & Life Sciences
Scotland Medicine & Life Sciences
Politics Medicine & Life Sciences
neoliberalism Social Sciences
discourse Social Sciences
language Social Sciences
linguistics Social Sciences
health Social Sciences

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Research Output 1989 2019

Spiritual Beliefs and Mental Health: A Study of Muslim Women in Glasgow

Gunson, D., Nuttall, L., Akhtar, S., Khan, A., Avian, G., Thomas, L., Collins, C. (ed.), Sims, R. (ed.) & Pautz, H. (ed.) 15 Jan 2019 UWS-Oxfam Partnership. 31 p. (UWS-Oxfam Partnership: Collaborative Research Reports Series; no. 4)

Research output: Book/ReportOther report

Mental Health
Mental Health Services

Glasgow’s ‘intangible cultural heritage': ‘Workers City’ and the European City of Culture

Collins, C. & Levitt, I. 14 May 2018

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

Intangible Cultural Heritage
European City of Culture

Scotland's Local Authorities: Still 'Bastions of Decent Work'?

Ishaq, M., Gibb, S., Hussain, A. M., Collins, C. (ed.), Sims, R. (ed.) & Pautz, H. (ed.) Oct 2018 UWS-Oxfam Partnership. 18 p. (UWS-Oxfam Partnership, Collaborative Research Reports Series. Decent Work in Scotland: Thematic Report; no. 4)

Research output: Book/ReportOther report

Open Access
Local authorities

History, politics and vulnerability: explaining excess mortality in Scotland and Glasgow

Walsh, D., McCartney, G., Collins, C., Taulbut, M. & Batty, G. D. 1 Oct 2017 In : Public Health. 151, p. 1-12 12 p., 1

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access

Recovering the social and historical causes of Glasgow’s excess mortality: public policies and ‘personal’ troubles

Collins, C. & Levitt, I. 4 Apr 2017 p. 185-186 2 p.

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

public policy

Activities 2016 2019


community development
economic change