Dr Kathryn Oliver

Departmental Lecturer

Course Director, MSc. Evidence-Based Social Intervention and Policy Evaluation

Kathryn studied Molecular Biology at UCL (2003). Via a MSc in History of Science, Technology and Medicine (2004), she soon became interested in broader questions about how scientific knowledge and expertise are constructed, owned and used. Her PhD (Manchester, 2012) was half sociology, half public health, exploring social networks of power, influence and evidence-use in public health policymaking. During this period she held research and consultancy positions at LSHTM, the EPPI-Centre, BMJ Group, the Royal College of Surgeons, and the Nuffield Trust.

After postdoctoral positions in Manchester Sociology and Manchester Business School (GM CLAHRC), she was awarded a UCL Provost fellowship and Lectureship in Knowledge and Policy Networks at UCL. She joined DSPI in Autumn 2015.

She is an Associate Editor of Evidence and Policy journal, an expert advisor for WHO, a member of SocSocMed and INSNA, and a regular contributor to Research Fortnight and other media.


Kathryn is a social scientist with interests in 


  • use of evidence in policymaking, especially public health policy
  • the structure and function of networks in policy and practice
  • evaluation of social interventions and policies, particularly adverse effects
  • Research impact and science policy

Kathryn Oliver's key areas of research focus are (click to expand):

Understanding the relationship between evidence and policy
Understanding adverse effects of health policies and interventions
Policy Evaluation