Deborah Davidson

Deborah Davidson

Health Services Management Centre
Senior Fellow

Contact details

School of Social Policy, HSMC
Park House
University of Birmingham
B15 2RT, United Kingdom

Deborah’s is a Senior Fellow, Organisational Development (OD) and Leadership at the Health Services Management Centre.  Specialising in OD and developmental evaluations in the public sector, Deborah is involved in working alongside a culturally diverse range of individuals, groups, teams, and inter-agency systems to realise citizen and service user outcomes. Deborah leads HSMC’s consultancy services and Leadership and Management work stream and is also a member of HSMC’s People, Patients and Communities work stream. Deborah specialises in research, teaching, consultancy, and coaching on:

  • Organisational development and change in the public services
  • User centred developmental evaluations
  • Theory of change evaluation methodology
  • Leadership development (clinical and managerial)
  • Executive coaching


  • MA in Social Research (Cultural Studies and Sociology), University of Birmingham (2011)
  • Diploma in Leadership Mentoring and Executive Coaching, Institute for Leadership and Management (2010)
  • Level A & B in Occupational Testing (BPS Registered) (2002)
  • MA Consultation & the Organisation, University of East London (1997)
  • Advanced Organisational Consultation (AOC), Tavistock Institute (1995)


Deborah Davidson worked as a director in voluntary sector mental health, social care and housing services before moving to work in higher education, first at King’s College, London as Director of Leadership & Organisational Development Programmes and Director of Educational Programmes in the Institute for Applied Health and Social Policy, and then in the Health Services Management Centre at the University of Birmingham where Deborah is responsible for a portfolio of organisational development and leadership programmes and activities, some scheduled and some in response to client-organisation requests. These include being Programme Director for the successful MSc Leading Public Service Change and Organisational Development, and Co-Director for the module An Introduction to Organisational Development in Health and Social Care. She also has extensive experience in the design and delivery of personal and organisational development programmes at national, regional and local levels including the first Social Care Leadership Development Programme commissioned by the Social Care Institute for Excellence, Learning for Leadership commissioned by the DH for leaders of Learning Disability services across health social care and the voluntary sector, Mental Health Leadership Development Programme commissioned by the National Institute for Mental Health in England, The National Management Development Initiative commissioned by Manchester Strategic Health Authority, West Midlands Leadership Development Programme delivered to aspiring CEOs and Directors, Leaders UK for the Cabinet Office and Developing Your Potential commissioned by a private healthcare provider.

In addition, she has been involved in the design and delivery of organisational development programmes and developmental evaluations for a number of different organisations including Strategic Health Authorities, Local Health Boards, Foundation Trusts, Mental Health Care Trusts, Primary Care Trusts, Social Service Departments and National Voluntary Organisations and provides one-to-one coaching to executives, senior managers and service managers.

Previous projects:

  • Evaluation of community healthcare services models in Birmingham
  • A participatory research project exploring older people's experience of care transitions, co-delivered with older service user and carer co-researchers
  • Research into understanding and improving transitions of older people utilising a : a user and carer centred approach
  • Design, and delivery of research and development partnership programme, to build the infrastructure, skills and capacity to enable Leicestershire County and Rutland Community health Services to become a research and development based organisation
  • Feasibility Study into the Transfer of Commissioning of Forensic Service Examinations for Sexual Offences from the police to the NHS commissioned by the Department of Health.
  • Design, and delivery of a research and development partnership programme, to build the infrastructure, skills and capacity to enable a community health services provider to become a research and development based organisation.
  • Evaluation to assess the potential and progress of web-based patient and service user feedback for quality improvement.
  • Four year organisational development and integration of health, social care, voluntary and private sector services across a Welsh county borough council.
  • Evaluation of the integration of health and social care services in a Care Trust in the West Midlands.
  • Evaluating the leadership development needs of three key lead policy implementation roles in mental health services.



Miller, R., Freeman, T., Davidson, D. and Glasby, J. (2015) An adult social care compendium of approaches and tools for organisational change. Health Services Management Centre, April 2015.

Ellins, J, Glasby, J, Tanner, D, McIver, S, Davidson, D, Littlechild, R, Snelling, I, Miller, R, Hall, K, Spence, K and the 'Care Transitions' project co-researchers (2012) Understanding and improving transitions of older people: a user and carer centred approach. Southampton: NIHRSDO (forthcoming).

Crilly, T, Combes, G, Davidson, D, Joyner, O and Doidge, S (2011), Feasibility of Transferring Budget and Commissioning Responsibility for Forensic Sexual Offences Examination. University of Birmingham.

Brown, H, Davidson, D, and Ellins, J (2009) Real-time Patient Feedback. Health Services Management Centre (for NHS West Midlands).

Davidson, D. and Neumann, J. (2009) It Depends: Relative Dependency in Organisational Development and Change Education and Consultancy, Academy of Management Summer Conference, Chicago, 2009

Davidson, D. and Kinneen, L. (2008) Integrating mindsets: a story of a role consultation between peers, in Whittle, S. and Izod, K. (eds) Mindful Consulting, London: Karnac Books

Dickenson, H., Peck, E. And Davidson, D. (2007) Opportunity Missed or Seized? A Case Study of leadership and Organizational Change in the Creation of a Care Trust, Journal of Interprofessional Care, 21 (5): 500-513

Davidson, D. and Peck, E. (2006) Designing and developing healthcare organisations in Smith, J. and Walsh, K. (eds) Healthcare Management, London: Sage

Davidson, D. and Peck, E. (2005) Organisational development and the “repertoire” of healthcare leaders, in Peck, E. (ed) Organisational Development in Healthcare: approaches, innovations, achievements, Oxford, Radcliffe, 43-61

Davidson, D and Peck E 2005 The Organisational Development Cycle: putting the approaches into a process in Peck, E. (2005) (ed) Organisational Development in Healthcare: approaches, innovations, achievements, Oxford, Radcliffe, 63-76

Davidson, D., Newbigging, K. and Peck, E. 2002 Leadership Development: Reflections and Learning on a Two-year Programme, Mental Health Review, Vol. 7, No.4, 10-14., Vol. 7, No.4, 10-14.

Davidson, D. and Vick, N. 2002 Beyond Involvement: Making Choices and Taking Control, Mental Health Review, 7, 2, 25-28.

Follow this link for further publications from Deborah Davidson (pdf; 65KB; opens in new window).