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Personal profile

Area of academic expertise - outline

My primary research interest is in the field of dementia research. Specifically, I am interested in applied research which can help to improve the lives of people living with dementia, their families and people who care for them. This links with current policy promoting ‘living well with dementia’.

I completed my PhD in 2012 in psychology, which was my introduction to dementia research. My PhD examined the physical environment of care homes and explored how small environmental changes can change the way residents with dementia use their home, including promoting more communication and independence in residents. From there I became focused on building a research career in this area. Post-doctoral, I worked as a Research Fellow within the School of Health, Nursing and Midwifery at UWS on the seminal project ‘Dementia in the Workplace’. This research took a case study approach to understanding the experiences of people with dementia who were diagnosed whilst still in employment. The aim of the research was to explore the potential for continued employment post diagnosis. This research has been very positively received and has raised awareness of dementia as a workplace issue through a range of training programmes, events, media work and publications. After completing this work in 2015 I secured my current post as Lecturer in Dementia (Research) within the Alzheimer Scotland Centre for Policy and Practice (ASCPP) at UWS. In this role, I am continuing to develop the Dementia in the Workplace research, as well as working on other areas of research linked to the health and wellbeing of people with dementia. In particular, I have just completed a research project which evaluated the Dementia Dog pilot programme in Scotland using a realistic evaluation methodology. The Dementia Dog programme is an intervention which aims to train assistance dogs to help support people with dementia living in the community. Additionally, I am involved in other projects working collaboratively with colleagues within and associated with the ASCPP including a review of the housing situation for people with dementia in Scotland, evaluation of the Dementia Champions Programme for Scotland, and most recently work exploring health-related behaviours (e.g. smoking cessation) of people with dementia post diagnosis.

I have expertise in a range of qualitative and quantitative methodologies and methods including case studies, statistical analysis, realistic evaluation, interviews, focus groups and questionnaires. 

Current research activities

Employers' responses to dementia in the workplace in Scotland 2016-2018

Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland funded collobarative grant, which is led by Edinburgh Napier University. The aim of this research is to explore how employers in Scotland support their employees with dementia. The research will help us to understand whether employers are meeting their legal duties. The research will look at the policies that employers have to support employees with dementia. 

Dementia Dogs: A realistic evaluation 2016-2017

Alzheimer Scotland funded project which aims to understand the contribution of the dementia dog programme to living well with dementia. 

Housing and Dementia in Scotland 2016-2017

A desk based research project, funded by Angus Care and Repair and the Life Changes Trust. The aim of this project is to understand the housing supports and situation of people with dementia in Scotland. 

Dementia in the Workplace: the potential for continued employment post diagnosis: Dissemination Grant 2017

Based on the findings of the seminal Alzheimer's Society funded project, 'Dementia in the Workplace', completed in August 2015 I am now leading on an Alzheimer's Society Dissemination Grant for this project. The aim is to develop resources for people with dementia, employers and other key support services to provide information on how to support an individual with dementia in employment. 

PhD supervision

Currently supervising five PhD students and one Professional Doctorate student within the Institute of Healthcare Policy and Practice on projects relating to the care and support of people with dementia. Topics include

  • Early onset dementia
  • Down's syndrome and dementia
  • Care home research
  • Health-related behaviour change

Target collaborative companies


Third Sector organisations


Desired research direction

My aim is to continue to develop my interest in dementia and employment, with a focus on developing support mechanisims for employment and retirement post diagnosis of dementia. The initial project at UWS on this topic was seminal in the area, and my ambition is that this is developed and UWS is recognised as world leading in this area, both academicaly, and through impact on practice and policy relating to employment support post diagnosis.  

Other areas of expertise available for knowledge exchange

Early onset dementia

Dementia in the workplace

Case study research 

Purposeful activity and dementia

External positions

Associate Lecturer, The Open University

1 Sep 201330 Jun 2016

Teaching Fellow, University of Edinburgh

1 Aug 20101 Aug 2013

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Louise Ritchie is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

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Dementia Medicine & Life Sciences
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Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Research Output 2010 2019

Dementia in the workplace: are employers supporting employees living with dementia?

Egdell, V., Cook, M., Stavert, J., Ritchie, L., Tolson, D. & Danson, M., 24 Sep 2019, In : Aging & Mental Health.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Civil Rights
110 Downloads (Pure)
Open Access
pilot project
2 Citations (Scopus)
97 Downloads (Pure)
Open Access
Observational Studies
Blood Vessels

Younger person with dementia

Ritchie, L., 2019, Textbook of Dementia Care: An Integrated Approach. Jackson, G. A. & Tolson, D. (eds.). 1 ed. Routledge, p. 169-177 9 p.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

101 Downloads (Pure)
Open Access
Professional Education


Observational Studies
Blood Vessels

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