COVID-19 Longitudinal Health and Wellbeing National Core Study


Strategic Advisory Board (SAB)

Strategic Advisory Board (SAB)


The role of the SAB is to ensure the studies are aligned to the strategic priorities of their respective funding programmes and are able to respond to new and emerging priorities as identified by the National Cohort Studies Oversight Committee and the studies’ respective funding bodies 

Dame Anne Johnson, UCL

Dame Anne Johnson is Professor of Infectious Disease Epidemiology at University College London, Co-Director of UCL Health of the Public and newly elected President of the UK Academy of Medical Sciences. After training in medicine in Cambridge and Newcastle Universities, she specialised in Epidemiology and Public Health. Her career has focussed on research into the epidemiology and prevention of HIV and sexually transmitted infections as well as other infections such as influenza, Ebola, antimicrobial resistance and COVID-19. She co-directed the Medical Research Council, UK Centre for Co-ordinating Epidemiological Studies of HIV from 1985 until 1999 undertaking a range epidemiological studies and trials. She was principal investigator on the 3 decennial National Surveys of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles (Natsal). She is a collaborator on the UK I-sense programme, studying point-of-care diagnostics and digital pathways for infectious disease detection. She is a member of the RS Delve Committee studying COVID-19 and serves on UKRI and other advisory groups on COVID-19 research and is an author of the AMS report ‘Preparing for a Challenging Winter’. She co-founded UCL’s Institute for Global Health and has advised many national and international science organisations. She chaired the UK Academy of Medical Sciences (AMS) Working Group on Improving the Health of the Public by 2040. She is a former member of the DEFRA Adaptation Sub-Committee of the Committee on Climate Change and a former Governor of the Wellcome Trust. She chairs the UK Committee for Strategic Coordination of Health of the Public Research (SCHOPR). She was awarded the Alwyn Smith Prize by the Faculty of Public Health in 2016 and the Andrea Stampar medal in 2017 by ASPHER for her contributions to Public health research. She was awarded DBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list in 2013

Professor Cathie Sudlow, BHF Data Science Centre

Professor Cathie Sudlow is the inaugural director of the BHF Data Science Centre, whose vision is to improve the public’s cardiovascular health through the power of large-scale data and advanced analytics across the UK. She is also Chair of Neurology and Clinical Epidemiology at the University of Edinburgh. Cathie is a clinical neurologist and epidemiologist. Her clinical work involves assessing and treating patients with suspected acute stroke in the hospital emergency department. Her research interests have always been firmly embedded in the world of big data with a focus on large scale collaborative open-science efforts to determine the causes (genetic, environment and lifestyle) of - and the effects of treatment on – common diseases of middle and older age. She has played a major role in initiatives: to establish the role of antithrombotic therapy in preventing heart disease and stroke; to investigate differences between stroke subtypes; and to discover genes that influence stroke. Cathie was previously Head of the Centre for Medical Informatics at the Usher Institute of Population Health Sciences and Informatics at the University of Edinburgh. From 2011-2019, she was Chief Scientist of UK Biobank, a large-scale research resource, with in-depth genetic and health information from half a million UK adults, accessible to approved researchers worldwide, studying a wide range of common, rare and lifethreatening health conditions.

Professor George Davey Smith, University of Bristol

George Davey Smith is a clinical epidemiologist whose research has pioneered (1) understanding of the causes and alleviation of health inequalities; (2) lifecourse epidemiology (3) systematic reviewing of evidence of effectiveness of health care and health policy interventions (4) population health contributions of the new genetics. Major contributions include: a) the demonstration of the influence of childhood socio-economic deprivation on cause-specific morbidity and mortality patterns in adult life; b) methodological developments in meta-analysis; c) elucidation of factors underlying socio-economic differences in morbidity and mortality in the UK, US, Norway and India d) the development and application of Mendelian randomisation approaches, interrogating the causal role of behavioural factors (such as alcohol consumption) and intermediate phenotypes (such as fibrinogen and C-reactive protein) on different health outcomes; e) application of causal analysis approaches to epigenetic data. He is an ISI highly cited scholar and Fellow of the Royal Society, Foreign Member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW), Foreign Associate of the National Academy of Medicine and Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh. He has sat on the MRC Public Health and Health Services Research, Physiological Medicine and Infection Boards, the MRC Military Health Research Advisory Group, the MRC Global Health Group and the Wellcome Trust Science Funding Interview Panel. He has established or has been central to the running of a large number of epidemiological cohort studies involving detailed clinical and biomarker assessments. He is Scientific Director of the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children; and became Director of the MRC Centre for Causal Analyses in Translational Epidemiology in 2007 and of the MRC Integrative Epidemiology Unit in 2013

Professor Paul Garner, Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine

A medical doctor, after my junior clinical training in the UK, I worked in Papua New Guinea for six years. After a period at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, I moved to the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine. I helped establish the Cochrane Collaboration, and I am the Co-ordinating Editor of the Cochrane Infectious Diseases Group. Our reviews have helped shape global policies in malaria, tuberculosis, and neglected tropical diseases. We lead a network of over 300 people synthesizing research to inform global, regional, and national policies in tropical infections and conditions relevant to people living in low- and middle-income countries. We work with the World Health Organization and several countries in guideline development. I am Director of a FCDO Development Initiative called READ-It, working with colleagues in South Africa, Zambia, India, Nepal, China, and Norway. In 2020, I developed a post viral fatigue syndrome after COVID19 and recovered. I now have a personal interest in the mechanisms of PVS and personal strategies to ensure recovery

Professor Jane Falkingham, University of Southampton

Jane Falkingham is Professor of Demography & International Social Policy and Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Southampton, and is currently acting as the Vice President (International) on a interim basis for the academic year 2020/21. She is also the Director of the ESRC Centre for Population Change (CPC), whose remit is to ‘improve understanding of the drivers and consequences of population change both nationally and globally’. Jane pursues a multi-disciplinary research agenda, located at the interface between population studies and social policy and spanning both developed and developing countries. Much of her research over the past twenty-five years has focussed on the social policy implications of population change and the well-being of older people, with her research taking an explicitly life course approach and utilising many of the UKRI longitudinal data investments. She is currently working with CPC colleagues on a programme of work focussing on understanding the dynamics of employment and informal care in mid-life and flows of intergenerational support. She has published more than 200 books, journal articles and book chapters, and supervised 30 PhD students to successful completion. Jane has a long history of service to the Social Science community both in the UK and internationally. She is currently a Member of ESRC Council and chairs the ESRC Grant Delivery Group. She was also the Chair ESRC Covid-19 Rapid Response funding panel and is currently a member of the ADRUK Steering Board. Jane was President of the British Society for Population Studies (2015-2017) and President of the European Association for Population Studies (2018-2020) and is currently Chair of the European Population Information Centre, Population Europe. Jane was elected as a Fellow of the UK Academy of Social Sciences in 2011 and the Royal Society of Arts in 2016. In October 2015 she was awarded the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for her services to Social Sciences, receiving the honour from Prince William at a ceremony at Buckingham Palace