Accessibility statement

Hilary Graham, CBE, FBA
Professor, Health Sciences



Hilary Graham has a background in sociology and social policy. Prior to coming to the Department of Health Sciences at York, she held positions at Lancaster University and the University of Warwick.

She has a track-record of research concerned with social inequalities in health, with a particular focus on health-related behaviours. Her current research is also exploring the implications of climate change for people's health and everyday lives. 

From 2014 - 2023, Hilary Graham was part of the Lancet Countdown on health and climate change, funded by the Wellcome Trust (2018-23). She coordinated the Countdown working group tracking public and political engagement in health and climate change. Follow this link for the 2023 Lancet Countdown report. Earlier Countdown reports can be found on the Lancet Countdown website.

Hilary is an Co-Investigator for the new ESRC Centre for Climate and Social Transformations (CAST) led by University of Bath.

Hilary Graham has led a range of research programmes, including the Department of Health Public Health Research Consortium (2005-11). She is a Co-Investigator in the NIHR Public Health Policy Research Unit (2019-2024, led by LSHTM).

Her books include Unequal Lives: Health and Socioeconomic Inequalities (Open University Press, 2007) and Understanding Health Inequalities (Open University Press, 2010). 

Other activities

Hilary was a member of the Social Policy and Social Work Panel for the 2014 Research Excellence Framework, as well as a number of previous Research Assessment Exercises, and has served as Vice-Chair of the ESRC Research Committee. Hilary received a CBE for services to social science in the Queen's Birthday Honours List 2014 and was elected a Fellow of the British Academy in 2016.


  • PhD Sociology, University of York
  • Postgraduate Certificate in Education, University of York
  • MA Sociology, University of York
  • BA Sociology, University of York

Please note that Hilary is not currently taking PhD students.



Hilary's current research interests focus on the social and health implications of climate change, including implications for future generations (children's future lives and the lives of those yet to be born). She also continues her research interests in public health and social inequalities.


Research group(s)


Please note that Hilary is not taking PhD students.


Selected publications

  • Social media engagement in health and climate change an exploratory analysis of Twitter Environmental Research: Health
  • Priorities for research to support local authority action on health and climate change: a study in England BMC Public Health
  • The 2023 report of the Lancet Countdown on health and climate change: health at the mercy of fossil fuels The Lancet article
  • Engagement with health in national climate change commitments under the Paris Agreement: a global mixed-methods analysis of the nationally determined contributions The Lancet Planetary Health article
  • Intergovernmental engagement on health impacts of climate change Bulletin of the World Health Organization article
  • The representation of future generations in newspaper coverage of climate change: a study of the UK press Children & Society article
  • Positive, global, and health or environment framing bolsters public support for climate policies (2022) Nature: Communications earth and environment article
  • A report on adults who engage in little physical activity and eat little fruit and vegetables (funded by PHRC) Report (PDF , 1,890kb) (This report should be opened in Adobe Acrobat to see the associated tables)
  • 'I don't really associate climate change with actual people's health': a qualitative study in England of perceptions of climate change and its impacts on health (2023) Public Health article.

Full publications list


External activities


Hilary Graham

Contact details

Professor Hilary Graham
Professor, Health Sciences

Tel: 01904 32(1349)