a one-day event organised by the Centre for Wellbeing in Public Policy (CWiPP)

Monday 12 September 2016

University of Sheffield, Crookesmoor Building, Conduit Road, Sheffield, S10 1FL


In the past decade there has been a dramatic increase in interest in wellbeing in a range of arenas. This interest has led to new measurement frameworks, shifts in discourse and developments in policy. The rise of wellbeing brings new opportunities and challenges for politicians, policy-makers and publics.

This event seeks to contribute to debate and understanding of these challenges and opportunities and we are keen to encourage participation from the widest possible audience including academics, activists, campaigners, policy-makers, politicians, practitioners, students, and interested members of the public.

The event will involve both plenary and parallel workshop sessions with the day organised around four themes of central importance to the wellbeing agenda – politics, housing, mental health, and work. Unsolicited papers are not invited but we welcome poster contributions and submissions to our Working Papers series.

Download the presentations from the Wellbeing event on the speaker biographies webpage


9:30am Registration

10:00am Welcome – Prof Aki Tsuchiya, Co-Director of CWiPP

10:15am Plenary

  • Introduction to the conference themes (housing, mental health, politics and work
  • The What Works Centre for Wellbeing (Ingrid Abreu Scherer, WWCW)

11:10am Coffee

11:30am Themed workshops 1

  • Housing
  • Mental health
  • Politics
  • Work

1:00pm Lunch

1:40pm Themed workshops 2

  • Housing
  • Mental health
  • Politics
  • Work

3:10pm Tea

3:30pm Plenary - Feedback from workshops: Discussant, Ingrid Abreu Scherer + Q&A

4:50pm Summing up and moving forward – Prof Ian Bache. Co-Director of CWiPP

5:00pm End

For any queries on this event, please contact wellbeing@sheffield.ac.uk


The first Politics workshop will introduce participants to the key developments in wellbeing in politics and policy. This will include the rise of wellbeing over the last 10 years or so evident in new measurement initiatives, discourse and policy initiatives. It will consider the questions raised by this for those involved in politics either as academics or practitioners. This introductory session will focus around presentations on developments at national, international and local level to provide the background for discussions in the second workshop.

The second workshop will be less introductory and will explore how wellbeing is being taken forward in a practical sense. It will consider questions such as: What opportunities does wellbeing offer for politicians and policy-makers? What are the challenges for wellbeing in politics and policy? How might the idea of wellbeing take policy and politics in a different direction? What is the role of evidence in policy-making? What are the lessons for collaboration/co-production between academics and policy-makers? This session will be led by contributions from local policy actors and will have a particular focus on developments in Sheffield.

Speakers confirmed:


The morning 'housing' session will present examples of primary and review level research into housing, with a clear wellbeing focus. The afternoon workshop will explore methods in conducting evaluation in the area of housing. These sessions will explore ways of identifying and valuing the potential impact of housing interventions on individual and community wellbeing. This theme will be of particular interest to researchers in the area of housing and wellbeing and practitioners and others involved or interested in housing policy.

The speakers are:

Mental health

This theme will explore why citizen leadership (sometimes called ‘patient leadership’) in mental health is of critical value for supporting people with mental health problems to build fulfilling lives. It will draw on important research in this field, along with a range of examples of citizen leadership in mental health. There will be brief presentations from a number of people who have led and developed work in this area. A number of key principles for success will be articulated, along with a discussion of the major barriers and difficulties. In addition, a number of contemporary theoretical frameworks for guiding this work will be highlighted and discussed. Finally, a new initiative for citizen leadership will be showcased: attendees will be invited to participate by signing up for involvement.

In the morning session Prof Brendan Stone will be in conversation with Dr Rachel Warner, Medical Director for the Sheffield Health and Social Care NHS Foundation Trust, and a consultant psychiatrist. They will discuss local and national movements and initiatives which enable and advocate for citizen leadership, as well as the barriers and difficulties to implementation. In the afternoon a number of citizen leaders in mental health will present aspects of their work. In both sessions there will be opportunities for audience contribution and discussion.

Speakers/facilitators confirmed to date are:


The first session will be devoted to an examination of ‘what we know’ (or think we know) about work and wellbeing. It will include a discussion of the meaning of wellbeing in a work context, the factors that are thought to influence the relationship between work and wellbeing, how the relationship varies according to, for example, occupation, and the consequences of the recent economic crisis for wellbeing at work. This session will include presentations of recent research evidence, including the first findings of the What Works Centre for Wellbeing.

The second session will explore two issues. The first will be the practical steps that might be taken to promote wellbeing improvements within the workplace. It will consider questions such as: what are the obstacles to enhancing wellbeing? Which practices appear to work and which are less successful? To what extent are organisational practices informed by research? The second issue to be explored in this session will be potential future research direction. This part of the session will discuss questions such as: What are the gaps in our knowledge? How are work and employment changing and what are potential implications for wellbeing? How do research questions, methods, conceptualisation and theorisation differ between research disciplines? How might research be enriched through inter-disciplinary collaborations? Are we asking questions that are important to policy makers, employers and workers? How might we work together to develop and take forward the research agenda?

Speakers confirmed: