Dr Alistair Hewison PhD, MA, BSc, Cert ED (FE), RN

Dr Alistair Hewison

School of Nursing
Senior Lecturer, Research Lead for Nursing

Contact details

Institute of Clinical Sciences
College of Medical and Dental Sciences
University of Birmingham
Birmingham, B15 2TT

Alistair Hewison is senior lecturer and research lead for nursing.  He has undertaken research investigating the organisation of care over a number of years and published widely on nursing, management and policy in scholarly journals and book chapters.

He has led a number of projects investigating end of life care in a range of settings, service redesign, and the organisation of nursing services.  His involvement in this programme of work is centred on understanding how the organisation and management of services can improve care. 



  • PhD Sociology 2000
  • MA Sociological Research Methods in Health Care 1993
  • BSc Nursing Studies 1988
  • Certificate in Education (FE) 1990
  • RN 1981


Alistair qualified as a registered nurse from the Queen Elizabeth School of Nursing, Birmingham.  Following a number of staff nurse posts in a range of clinical specialties he worked as a Charge Nurse and Manager. 

He was later appointed Senior Lecturer in Health Care Management at Coventry University, later becoming Head of the Health Sciences Subject Group.  Since joining the University of Birmingham he has developed his research and teaching activities in the management and organisation of care.


Teaching Programmes

Module Leadership

  • Professional Development (UG)
  • Introduction to Leadership and Management in Public Health (PG)

Other Teaching

Alistair also contributes to a wide range of other modules in the areas of management, quality, and policy.

Postgraduate supervision

Alistair is interested in supervising doctoral research students in the following areas:

  • The organisation and management of End-of-life care.
  • Nursing management-particularly in relation to the role of the ward manager.
  • Service organisation and design. 

If you are interesting in studying any of these subject areas please contact Alistair on the contact details above, or for any general doctoral research enquiries, please email: dr@contacts.bham.ac.uk or call +44 (0)121 414 5005.

For a full list of available Doctoral Research opportunities, please visit our Doctoral Research programme listings.   



Health Services research

Research Activity

Alistair's research interests are focussed on health care management and policy, particularly in relation to nursing.   In recent years this has centred on the organisation of end of life care in a range of settings including care homes, the community and NHS acute trusts.

In addition he is working with colleagues in the Health Services Management Centre on a programme of work to explore how best to organise services to ensure the delivery of compassionate care.

Recent projects include a large scale investigation of service redesign in three acute NHS trusts; An examination of the factors precipitating emergency hospital admissions of people with cancer; An evaluation of frameworks for supporting ward staff in NHS Trusts; and an exploration of how best to promote a culture of research in the NHS.

Other activities

  • Honorary appointment St Mary’s Hospice, Birmingham
  • Research Advisory Group member, Marie Curie Hospice, West Midlands. 
  • Member of the Nursing Strategic Collaborative Committee


Gale N, Shapiro J, McLeod H, Redwood S, and. Hewison A (2014) The Patients-People-Place model: Researching Organisational Culture during Service redesign.  Implementation Science 9:106, 1-11. http://www.implementationscience.com/content/9/1/106)

Lord L, Dowdswell G and Hewison A (2014) ‘The team for both sides’? A qualitative study of change in heart failure services at three acute NHS Trusts.  Health and Social Care in the Community doi: 10.1111/hsc.12118

Hewison A, Lord L and Bailey C (2014) ‘It’s been quite a challenge’-Redesigning End of Life Care in Acute hospitals.  Palliative and Supportive Care-doi:10.1017/S1478951514000170.

Hewison A (2013) The missing leaders: Rediscovering the Ward Sister/Charge Nurse role.  Leadership in Health Services 26 (4), 268 – 282. DoI 10.1108/LHS-12-2011-0049

Hewison A and Morrell K.(2013) Leadership Development in Healthcare: A counter narrative to inform policy.  International Journal of Nursing Studies DOI 10.1016/j.ijnurstu.2013.08.004

Hewison A, Gale N, Yeats R and Shapiro J. (2013)An evaluation of staff engagement programmes in four National Health Service Acute Trusts.  Journal of Health Organization and Management 27 (1), 85-105.

Morrell K and Hewison A. (2013) Rhetoric in policy texts: the role of enthymeme in Darzi’s review of the NHS.  Policy & Politics 41 (1), 59-79.

Williams R, Hewison A, Wildman S & Roskell C (2013) Changing fatherhood: an exploratory qualitative study with African and African Caribbean men in England.   Children & Society 27, 97-103.