Dr Sandhya Duggal

Dr Sandhya Duggal

Department of Social Work and Social Care
Research Fellow

Contact details

Department of Social Work and Social Care
Park House
University of Birmingham
Edgbaston, Birmingham
B15 2TT, United Kingdom

Dr Sandhya Duggal is a research fellow at the School of Social Policy, based in the Department of Social Work and Social Care.

Sandhya is currently working as the principal research fellow managing a project funded by the Department of Health and Social Care, which aims to explore the range and impact of activities being undertaken by Local Authorities to prevent, reduce or delay the need for adult social care in response to the Care Act 2014. She is also collaborating with colleagues at HSMC as an evaluation fellow on a REF impact case study.

Sandhya has particular expertise in adult social care, public health and qualitative health research.   

She is also the Early Career and Research Staff (ECARS) representative for the College of Social Sciences.


  • PGCert Higher Education, University of Birmingham (2018)
  • PhD Public Health, University of Birmingham (2013)
  • MA Sociology, University of Warwick (2009)
  • BA (Hons) Sociology, University of Leicester (2008)


Sandhya has continued to develop a strong research portfolio within the field of public health and adult social care. This has included successful completion of interdisciplinary research projects exploring a variety of topics such as; the implications of regenerative medicine for patients in the UK, improving the care pathway for women who choose to have a caesarean section, and the role of Local Authorities and the prevention agenda in response to the Care Act 2014.

Since completing her PhD, Sandhya has worked predominantly in research-focused roles, however, she has also developed a passion for teaching within the subject area of public health and medical sociology.

Sandhya began her teaching career as a tutor teaching Medicine and Surgery modules within the MBChB at the University of Birmingham, facilitating sessions on; beliefs about medicine, patients and populations, and clinical communication. Now, Sandhya designs and deliver lectures, supervises students, and is involved in assessment at both undergraduate and postgraduate level across a wide variety of programmes at the University of Birmingham.


  • BA Social Policy and Sociology
  • BA Social Work
  • BMedSc Health Management Leadership
  • MPH

Postgraduate supervision

Sandhya is interested in supervising doctoral researchers who plan to use qualitative research methods in the following areas:

  • Health and social care experiences of ethnic minority older people (England)
  • Addressing inequalities in public health

Doctoral research

PhD title
In 2013, Sandhya completed a full-time funded PhD studentship at the University of Birmingham (CLAHRC WM). Sandhya’s PhD explored the cultural and social factors which influence Indian Punjabi men’s health beliefs and how these shaped perceptions of risk related to Type 2 Diabetes.


2014-2017  Research Fellow, Institute of Applied Health Research, University of Birmingham. 

Sandhya worked as a research fellow on an ESRC funded collaborative project ‘REGenableMED’. This two-year study explored regenerative medicine and its development and implementation in the UK, with a focus on the analysis of emergent value systems and health service readiness. 

2012-2014  Research Associate, Institute of Applied Health Research University of Birmingham 

During the final year of her PhD, Sandhya worked as a research associate for an NIHR (CLAHRC WM) funded research study exploring healthcare professionals and women’s perceptions of maternal request for caesarean section to improve current health policy in maternity services.

Other activities

Sandhya is a regular contributor for Community Care Inform Adults, an organisation who provide online resources for social workers and social care professionals. Sandhya’s recent research resources include; 


Kenyon, S., Johns, N., Duggal, S., Hewston, R., Gale. N. (2016) Improving the care pathway for women who request Caesarean section: an experience-based co-design study, BMC Pregnancy Childbirth, 16(1):348.

Wiseman, J., Davies, E., Duggal, S. et al. (2017) Understanding the changing gaps in higher education participation in different regions of England, Department for Education.

View all publications in research portal