• Room 01.009 - 2 College Park East

    United Kingdom

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

- Drugs and Alcohol misuse in young people
- Drug and alcohol misuse
- Programme evaluation
- Youth development

1996 …2023

Research activity per year

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Personal profile

Research Interests

Kathryn Higgins is the Director of the cross Faculty Queen's Communities and Place Initiative and professor of Social Science and Health in the School of Social Science Education and Social Work Queen’s University Belfast. Kathryn is an experienced research leader having previously led the Centre for Evidence and Social Innovation and the Institute for Child Care Research. Kathryn has an established research reputation in the areas of substance use and addictive behavior and also has been active in the field of programme evaluation/implementation science. She continues to lead the now 18-year longitudinal study, known as the Belfast Youth Development Study, which has acted as a focal point for collaborations with external partners and for new, policy led research. She has developed a cadre of work over the past ten+ years on Public Engagement Programme evaluation & implementation Science, evaluating interventions designed to improve child and adolescent development. These include RCTs of school- and community-based interventions.  Her research programmes, publications and international conference contributions have examined the policy and evidence base for interventions including substance misuse, mental health, alcohol prevention and the mechanisms for implementing evidence based practice and policy more generally. She has attracted funding from prestigious sources such as the National Institute for Health Research, MRC and ESRC.  Kathryn teaches on the MSc on Substance Use and Substance Use Disorders

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 1 - No Poverty
  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions


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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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