Angel Dillip

Angel Dillip, is a social scientist and epidemiologist with diverse academic and field experience in public health research. Angel holds a PhD in Epidemiology and Public Health from the University of Basel, Switzerland. She joined Ifakara Health Institute in 2006, since then she has been well involved in project design and, management, as well as monitoring and evaluation in social and human development projects. Dr Dillip has a particular interest in grassroots development interventions, particularly community and rural development initiatives. For the past 12 years, Angel has been working in public health related social research focusing on social underpinnings of ill-health, the social impacts of disease and illness. Her main area of work include malaria, HIV/AIDS, NCDs, Antimicrobial resistance, maternal and child health.

Chris Bunn

Chris is an applied sociologist who develops and evaluates practical, community-led solutions to health problems. He is passionate about working with cultural forms and has studied sports- and faith-based public health initiatives. In his career to date, Chris has contributed social science expertise to studies of diabetes (type 1, type 2 and gestational), weight management, physical activity, sedentary time reduction and NCD prevention. He is inspired by a wide range of social, political and psychological theories and employs these influences pragmatically to co-create community-focussed programmes that improve health and wellbeing.

Cindy Gray

Cindy is a social scientist who aims to understand what makes people do the things they do, and why. She seeks to discover innovative ways to support people to improve their lifestyles (e.g. becoming more active, sitting less, eating better) and reduce their risk of ill health.

Previous projects have involved:

  • using football clubs to help men lose weight ( See here for more information and become more physically active/sit less (See here for more information:
  • using bingo clubs to help older women become more active; See here for more information:
  • an app-based game to encourage people to become more active during the Glasgow Commonwealth Games; See here for more information)
  • using a text-based ‘soap opera’ to encourage men to lose weight; See here for more information:

The Culture and Bodies project represents an exciting new opportunity to work with artists and researchers in Malawi and Tanzania to explore the use of arts and performance in understanding people’s experiences of the risk factors for non-communicable diseases (e.g. heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes). We then hope to work with local communities to design arts-based activities to reduce these diseases by encouraging people to improve their lifestyles and reduce their personal risk of developing these diseases.


Tel: 0141 330 6274

Elson Kambalu

Elson Kambalu is a visual artist/curator/gallerist/film maker based in Lilongwe, Malawi. He is increasingly drawn to conceptual and participatory work and he is interested in listening to, sharing people’s stories, and creating works that stimulate debate. Elson has exhibited extensively, and his work has appeared on BBC, CNN, and numerous broadcasting houses across the world. He owns several galleries in Malawi including Art House Africa, and he works with more than 150 artists, collecting and connecting them to clients within and outside Malawi. In 2015 he was chosen as one of the 10 most innovative people of his country.

Helen Todd

Helen is Executive Director of Arts and Global Health Center Africa Art and Global Health Center Africa (ArtGlo), an NGO in Zomba, Malawi that uses participatory arts-based approaches to ignite positive social change. Prior to joining ArtGlo, Helen served as Malawi Programme Manager for Global Health Corps, a fellowship programme aiming to build the next generation of leaders for health equity. Helen has previously worked with diverse groups, including refugee communities in the UK and Malawi and indigenous communities in Peru. She loves working alongside and learning from people with varied backgrounds to find creative solutions to challenges. Helen holds an MProf in Leadership for Sustainable Development from Middlesex University and a BA in Psychology and Philosophy from Sheffield University. In her spare time she is often found hiking, or enjoying art, music and theatre.


Jason Gill

Jason Gill is Professor of Cardiometabolic Health in the Institute of Cardiovascular and Medical Sciences at the University of Glasgow. He leads an active multi-disciplinary research group investigating the effects of exercise and diet on the prevention and management of vascular and metabolic diseases from the molecular to the whole-body level. Major research interests include: why certain populations appear to be particularly susceptible to the adverse effects of a `Westernised’ lifestyle, and how lifestyle interventions can modulate this excess risk; the interactions between physical activity, energy balance, adiposity and disease risk; and the mechanisms by which exercise regulates lipoprotein metabolism. Jason is Director of the MSc programme in Sport and Exercise Science & Medicine, and also plays an active role in communicating the science of physical activity, diet, obesity and cardio-metabolic risk to the widest possible audience including a number of appearances on TV documentaries and organisation of Understanding of Science events for the general public.

Jo Seth-Smith

Jo’s professional experience includes programme management of health education, gender equality and advocacy projects across the UK, EU and Southern Africa. Her most recent post as Head of Education at Theatre for a Change Malawi included writing, facilitating and training others to run highly interactive and creative sessions on sexual reproductive health and rights. Still in Malawi, she is now completing a Masters in Public Health with The London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) while looking after her 2 year old son. Having studied Psychology and Anthropology as her undergraduate degree, she has a keen interest in the effectiveness of behaviour change interventions; focussing on the use of psychological theory and the interactions with cultural and social norms.

Jo Sharp

Jo Sharp is Professor of Geography at the University of Glasgow, with research interests in political, postcolonial and feminist geographies.  Her research has traced the ways in which different forms of knowledge are worked through institutions, whether this is the ways in which geopolitical knowledges are created through popular and political representations of the world, or the ways in which local people’s knowledges of their environment shapes the ways in which development is practiced.

Jo is current working as part of an interdisciplinary team of epidemiologists, vets, modellers and social scientists to evaluate the key drivers of zoonotic disease (those which are transmitted from animals to humans) in northern Tanzania, understand the impacts of these diseases, and to develop interventions that will be appropriate for the various affected communities.

Jo has undertaken interdisciplinary research with social and natural scientists in the UK, Egypt and Tanzania.

Personal website:

Livestock, livelihoods and health website (for more information on zoonoses projects in Tanzania):


John Lloyd Chipembere Lwanda;
Where a little of Malawi meets the World in Scotland!


John Lloyd Chipembere Lwanda is a physician, social historian, researcher and writer who has lived and been educated in Zimbabwe, Malawi and Scotland. His Ph.D. was on the dynamics between culture, politics and medicine with reference to the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Malawi. John’s many research interests encompass politics, social and cultural history, interrogating the popular public sphere, the dynamic between biomedicine and traditional medicine, collecting, archiving and recording popular and traditional music, still photography and collecting Malawi artistic and craft objects, including fabrics.

Books include Kamuzu Banda of Malawi: Promise, Power and Legacy (Kachere, 2010); Music, Culture and Orature: Reading the Malawi public sphere, 1949 – 2006 (Kachere, 2008); Politics, Culture and Medicine in Malawi (Kachere, 2005). He has contributed chapters to books, including: J. D. H. Downey (Ed) Encyclopedia of Social Movement media (Sage Publications, 2011); M. Beveridge, K. King, R. Palmer and R. Wedgewood (Eds) Reintegrating Education, skills and work in Africa: towards informal or knowledge economics? (CAS, Edinburgh University, 2005); M. Ott, M. et al. (eds) The power of the vote: Malawi’s 2004 parliamentary and presidential Elections (Kachere, 2004); E. Kalipeni, et al. (eds) HIV/AIDS in Africa: Beyond Epidemiology (Blackwell, 2004); H. Englund (ed) A democracy of chameleons: politics and culture in the new Malawi (Nordic Afrikainstitut, 2002) and ‘Malawi music – various’ (forthcoming in Bloomsbury Encyclopedia of Popular Music of the World). Papers include ‘Music Advocacy, the Media and the Malawi Political Public Sphere, 1958 – 2007’ JAMS (Journal of African Media Studies) Vol. 1 | No. 2 | December 2008; ‘The history of music in Malawi’; ‘Mother’s songs: male appropriation of women’s music in Malawi and Southern Africa’ Journal of African Cultural Studies, 16, 2, pp 119 – 142 and ‘The [in]visibility of HIV/AIDS in the Malawi public sphere, African Journal of AIDS Research 2003, 2(2): 113–126 .


Mia Perry

Dr. Mia Perry is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Education at the University of Glasgow. She works in the intersections of contemporary arts and cultural practices and formal and informal pedagogies. Mia marries a background in professional and educational arts practice with scholarship in post-critical theories, public pedagogies, and qualitative research methodologies. She has worked across multiple disciplinary, cultural, and geographical contexts. Her research and practice has taken place in rural and urban areas of Western Europe, Western and Central Canada, and Eastern and Southern Africa.

Mia’s current research is in the field of public pedagogies, particularly related to education for sustainability. She takes up socio-material theories alongside socio-ecological theory to address the complexity of working across difference. In particular, Mia’s work is focused on the space between science-led environmental initiatives and the socio-cultural and socio-material contexts and literacies of every-day life in multiple regions of Africa. Mia uses the social imaginary as a concept of possibility in the development of the relationships and disjuncture between disciplines, literacies, epistemologies, and geographies (across the affective and the representative; across the global north and south; across the natural and social sciences). This approach is facilitated through embodied and arts-informed approaches to learning, engagement, and research.


Molly Gilmour

Molly’s role as the Research Administrator for the Cultures and Bodies network comprises of support in both Communications and Financial coordination. Molly’s professional experience predominantly lies in Communications gained from her international work experience in the (I)NGO sector. Graduating with a MSc in Sociology Migration and Ethnic Studies, from the University of Amsterdam, Molly’s will begin her PhD studentship  in Sociology running from ’18 – ’22 at the University of Glasgow.

Sally Mmanyi Mtenga

Dr. Sally Mmanyi Mtenga is a social scientist trained in Community Development (BSs) as well as in Medical Sociology (MA) and Epidemiology (PhD). Currently she is the project leader for the gender formative study that seek to contribute to the improvement of maternal and reproductive health among women and adolescent girls in rural Tanzania, partnering with CARE International. Dr. Sally is also leading the Culture and Bodies project implemented in semi-urban Tanzania. Further to this, Dr. Sally supervises a process evaluation project which seek to improve the health and social services of children working in the mining areas of Tanzania. Recently, she has been assigned a session facilitation role on ‘health inequalities and social-determinants of health’ offered as part of the masters program in public health and research (MScPHR) under Ifakara Health Institute in collaboration with Nelson Mandela University.

Dr. Sally has over 10 years’ experience in community based and public health research and practices. Her specific expertise is on social science research on the intersection of social-determinants of diseases and health behaviors in the areas of HIV, maternal and reproductive health and malaria. She has long experience in mixed methods qualitative research including observations, focus group discussions, in-depth interviews and diaries. Dr. Sally’ recent PhD thesis is on “Social-Structural Determinants of HIV vulnerability in Marriage: Role of gender norms, power relations, masculinity, social norms and relationship quality”. This research was implemented in Ifakara town, south eastern Tanzania.

Dr. Sally has supervised undergraduate students from the University of Dar es Salaam. She also has had direct work experience and collaboration with International agencies and organizations such as CARE International in Tanzania, University of Glasgow, Barcelona Centre for International Health Research, Manhica Health and Demographic Site (HDS)-Mozambique, In-depth network and Lambarene HDS-Gabon. National collaboration with Tanzania AIDS Control Program, National Institute for Medical Research, Muhimbili Department of Health and Allied Science and Mwanza Institute of Clinical Trial Unit.

Link to publications


Sharifa Abdulla

Sharifa Abdulla is a Malawian scholar and theatre for development practitioner holding a lecturer position with the University of Malawi, Chancellor College in the Department of Fine and performing Arts. She is currently a PhD research student at the University of Glasgow, school of education (looking at Culture, Community Arts and Health). Sharifa holds a BA in Arts Humanities and an MA in Dramatic Arts from the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa. She has focused on exploring the design and development of Participatory Arts based methodologies that integrate communities as vital agents of change. She has been designing, developing and leading implementation of participatory health related programs including co-founding the Art and Global Health Center Africa ( She is also a founding member of the Malawi Medical Humanities Network (

Stuart Gray

Dr Stuart Gray has wide ranging research interests. His main area of focus is in uncovering strategies to counteract the age related loss of muscle mass, known as sarcopenia, and associated metabolic disorders. This involves the development and testing of a wide range of lifestyle (exercise and nutrition) interventions. He also has a developing research portfolio which aims to understand ethnic differences in risk of metabolic disease and to use this information to develop appropriate interventions.

For more information: