Dr Chris Russell

CRussell

Senior Lecturer - Programme Lead Post Graduate Certificate in Dementia Studies

Association for Dementia Studies

Contact Details

email: c.russell@worc.ac.uk

Programme Lead Post Graduate Certificate in Dementia Studies

Dr Chris Russell is Programme Lead for the Post Graduate Certificate in Dementia Studies, at the University of Worcester. Chris leads the Module on this programme ‘Engagement and Empowerment in Dementia Studies’, whose focus is upon human rights and citizenship.

Chris also leads on the delivery of training programmes for providers of care, health, advocacy and support services nationally.

In 2020 Chris completed his PhD:

“Because life’s there…understanding the experience and identity of people living with dementia in the context of leisure and fitness centres.”

This explored the lived experience of dementia, sport, leisure, citizenship and identity, which are Chris’ significant research, teaching and practice interests.

Chris is currently leading a research project PALDem, funded by the Leisure Studies Association and Active Hereford and Worcestershire. The project will design, develop, deliver and evaluate a distance learning training course for care and sports staff to support the delivery of physical activity for people living with dementia and their families.

Chris is a member of the Executive Committee of the Leisure Studies Association. This is a learned academic society, offering a multi-disciplinary meeting and communication forum open to researchers, practitioners and students in all areas of leisure studies around the world.

Previously, Chris developed and then led the Foundation Degree in Dementia Studies at the University of Worcester.

Chris is also a sports coach and registered social worker. 

Qualifications

  • Doctor of Philosophy (2020), University of Worcester.
  • Post Graduate Certificate in Research Methods (2018), University of Worcester.
  • Post Graduate Certificate in Higher Education (2013), University of Worcester.
  • MSc Applied Social Studies (1997), University of Oxford.
  • BA Honours Sociology & Politics (1992), University of Hull.

Teaching, Research and Knowledge Transfer

Chris’ teaching interests relate to leisure, citizenship and human rights, particularly as these relate to the context of dementia. Chris leads the Module on this programme ‘Engagement and Empowerment in Dementia Studies’, whose focus is upon human rights and citizenship.

Chris contributes to teaching on undergraduate social work, physiotherapy and paramedic courses at the University of Worcester. Chris also contributes to teaching and training for the Association for Dementia Studies in their commissioned education courses across the United Kingdom.

The LINK Group:

Between October 2013 and October 2016, Chris facilitated the LINK Group. The LINK Group is comprised of people living with dementia, and carers for people with dementia, as part of the Association for Dementia Studies, at the University of Worcester. Group members contributed through sharing their experiences of living with dementia with those enrolled on teaching and training programmes at the University of Worcester, and across the United Kingdom. They established a national and international reputation for their educational work and were affiliated with the Dementia Engagement and Empowerment Project (DEEP).

In 2016-2017 Chris was project leader for the LINK Film Project. The project created a set of films, tailored to the needs of the education and training provided by the Association for Dementia Studies and the wider University. The films draw upon the authentic voices of people affected by dementia, i.e. directly from the accounts of members of the LINK Group.

Research Interests

Chris’ research interests relate to leisure, citizenship and human rights, particularly as these relate to the context of dementia.

Chris is currently leading a research project PALDem, funded by the Leisure Studies Association and Active Hereford and Worcestershire. The project will design, develop, deliver and evaluate a distance learning training course for care and sports staff to support the delivery of physical activity for people living with dementia and their families.

Chris is patient and public involvement lead the research project ‘Get Real with Meeting Centres: a realist evaluation of locally driven social care for those affected by dementia’, which is funded by the National Institute for Health Research.

Chris completed his PhD: Russell, C., (2016-2020), “Because life’s there…understanding the experience and identity of people living with dementia in the context of leisure and fitness centres.”. The University of Worcester. Chris was supervised by Professor Dawn Brooker, Dr Geoff Kohe, and Dr Shirley Evans. Findings from the study now inform the teaching and training offered by the University of Worcester across a range of courses and programmes.

Between October 2013 and June 2016, Chris led a research project exploring the experiences of people with dementia teaching as Tutors at the University, the Expert by Lived Experience Tutor Initiative. This provided new insight into aspects of the lived experience of dementia, including diagnosis, citizenship and personhood. The initiative also enabled a greater understanding of how teaching that relates to the lived experience of dementia could be improved and given greater integrity. More detail can be found within articles published on the initiative (please see Publications & Dissemination section).

Professional bodies and experience

Chris is a Registered Social Worker with Social Work England

Professional Memberships include:

  • Leisure Studies Associations (Executive Committee Member)
  • Member of the British Sociological Association
  • Member of the British Society of Gerontology
  • Member of the International Sociology of Sport Association

Publications and Dissemination

Publications and Dissemination

Peer-Reviewed Journals

Russell, C., Kohe, G.Z., Brooker, D. and Evans, S. (2020) ‘Sporting Identity, Memory, and People with Dementia: Opportunities, Challenges, and Potential for Oral History’, The International Journal of the History of Sport, 36(13-14), pp.1157-1179. doi: 10.1080/09523367.2019.1703690.

Evans, S.C., Julie Barrett, J., Mapes, N., Hennell, J., Atkinson, T., Bray, J., Garabedian, C., and Russell, C. (2019) ‘Connections with nature for people living with dementia', Working with Older People, https:// doi.org/10.1108/WWOP-01-2019-0003

Russell, C. (2016) ‘People with Dementia, contributing to learning and teaching in higher education’ Dementia: the international journal of social research and practice. Dementia, 0(0) pp.1–6. doi: 10.1177/1471301216685460

Practice Publications

Russell, C. & Bray, J. (2020) ‘People with dementia contributing original content to the online educational offering of a new University course as part of everyday citizenship’ The Association for Dementia Studies Blog [Online] 23 October. Available from: https://adsdementiablog.wordpress.com/2020/10/22/people-with-dementia-contributing-original-content-to-the-online-educational-offering-of-a-new-university-course-as-part-of-everyday-citizenship/

Russell, C. & Xu, Q. (2015) Lived Experience at the Centre of Learning. The Australian Journal of Dementia Care 4 (5), 18-19

Russell, C. & Xu, Q. (2015) Lived Experience at the Centre of Learning. The Journal of Dementia Care 23 (4), 18-19

Chapters

Mackian, S. Russell. C, & McCalla, L. (2013) “Preparing to Lead” In Mackian, S. & Simons, J. Leading, Managing, Caring: Understanding leadership and management in health and social care. Open University, 1-27.

Book Reviews

Russell, C. (2017) Book Review: Sport, leisure and social justice, edited by L. Long, T. Fletcher, & B. Watson, London and New York, Routledge, 2017, 227 pp., UK £105.00 (hardback), ISBN: 978-1-138-96045-9. Annals of Leisure Research. ISSN Print: 1174-5398 Online: 2159-6816

Public Engagement Events

11th October 2021, Webinar, Active Herefordshire and Worcestershire. ‘Engaging people living with dementia in physical activity, reflections on good practice and ambitions for the future’.

16th July 2020, Webinar, University of Worcester, UK. ‘Sport, physical activity & dementia: Discussions for practice from the University of Worcester’.

2nd October 2019, International Council on Active Ageing, Active Ageing Week, Worcester, UK. ‘People living with dementia and their families engaging in sport and physical activity. Learning from research and practice.’

20th May 2019, The Beautiful Mind, Pint of Science Festival, Worcester, UK. ‘Can do, if you’ll give me the chance – people with dementia and their families engaging in sport and physical activity, how this feels and what it means’

Invited Conference Presentations

Russell, C. (January, 2022) People living with dementia participating in leisure within social spaces: the influence of and implications for social citizenship. British Sociological Association Leisure and Recreation Studies Group, Online Presentation.

Russell, C. (November, 2016) Sport, Identity and Dementia. Mental Health Issues, Cradle to Grave. Worcestershire Health & Care Trust and the University of Worcester, University of Worcester.

Russell, C. (July, 2012) What the Care Act Will Mean for Social Work? The Future of Social Work Conference. University of Gloucestershire.

Refereed conference presentations

Russell, C. (July, 2019) Leisure Studies Association Annual Conference, Abertay University, Dundee “Exploring the identity of people with dementia as they engage with the activities of community-based leisure and fitness centres. Implications for scholarship and practice”.

Russell, C. (June, 2019), College of Health, Life & Environmental Sciences Research Seminar, Family Care Symposium. “Research that explored the experience of people with dementia and carers taking part in physical activity at their local leisure centre.” University of Worcester, United Kingdom.

Russell, C. (November, 2018) 12th United Kingdom Dementia Congress. Brighton, United Kingdom. “Exploring the experiences of people affected by dementia who spend time engaging in physical activity within their local leisure centre”

Russell, C. (July, 2018) European Congress of Adapted Physical Activity 2018 (EUCAPA), University of Worcester, “Considering whether and how leisure centres and gyms can act as innovative resources for people with dementia and their families”

Russell, C. (July, 2018) British Society of Gerontology Annual Conference, Emerging Researchers in Ageing, Finalist, Three Minute Thesis Competition, Manchester Metropolitan University, “Leisure centres and people with dementia, so much potential, so much we still need to find out…”

Russell, C. (June, 2018) World Congress of Sociology of Sport, University of Lausanne, “Exploring the experiences of people with dementia using leisure centres. The transformative power of this new learning for the offering leisure centres make to individuals and their local communities”

Russell, C. (July, 2017) Enacting leisure in the context of dementia and identity: the role and significance of community leisure centres. Leisure Studies Association Annual Conference, Leeds Becket University, Leeds.

Russell, C. (June, 2017) The community leisure centre as a resource for people with dementia: explorations of individual and social identity. Poster presentation. Postgraduate Research Student Conference, University of Worcester, Worcester.

Russell, C. (June, 2017) Challenging Myths and Stereotypes – man with dementia helps me understand how to pole- vault. Images of Research Competition, University of Worcester.

Russell, C. (November, 2016) “Experts by Experience Tutors” – people with dementia contributing as tutors on a University course in the UK. Excellence in Dementia Research and Care. 26th Alzheimer Europe Conference, Copenhagen, Denmark.

The Link Group. (November, 2015) People with Dementia and Carers Contributing to Teaching. Learning from Each Other. 10th United Kingdom Dementia Congress. Telford, United Kingdom.

Russell, C. (October, 2014) People with Dementia Contributing to Teaching and Learning at Higher Education level. Dignity and Autonomy in Dementia. 24th Alzheimer Europe Conference, Glasgow.

Russell, C. (October, 2013) Improving Practice in Dementia - involving the people who matter most. People, Policy and Practice. Research in Focus Conference, the University of Worcester

Poster Presentation

Russell, C. (June, 2019) Postgraduate Research Student Conference, University of Worcester. Poster presentation: “Exploring the identity of people with dementia who engage with the activities of community-based leisure and fitness centres”

External Responsibilities

  • Volunteer member of Disability Access Officer and Supporter Liaison Officer Team, Cheltenham Town Football Club
  • World Health Organization Dementia Knowledge Exchange Peer Reviewer