Sally Wilson


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Senior Research Fellow

+44(0)1273 763 463

Sally has more than twenty years’ experience of conducting applied research in workplace health and wellbeing. Her specialisms include occupational health and safety, mental health and disability.

Within IES, Sally has worked with a wide range of clients including those in government departments and agencies (eg the Ministry of Defence, DCMS, the Home Office, the Cabinet Office, HSE, the Food Standards Agency, Public Health England), local government (eg WECA, Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea) and charities (eg Mind, Macmillan Cancer Support). In a European context she has managed research projects on occupational health for EU-OSHA, EASME (an agency of the European Commission) and the European Cancer Patient Coalition. She has also worked on projects in a health services delivery context on topics such as paramedic training and recruitment and health coaching.

Sally has a background in behavioural and health sciences having completed a PhD in neuropsychology at the MRC Cognition and Brain Sciences Unit in Cambridge. Much of her recent work has focussed on workplace mental wellbeing and interventions to upskill line managers in sectors such as rail transport, construction and first-response workers. She has an interest in behavioural insights and was co-developer of the government’s ‘ORGANISER’ model of employer behaviour and is currently working with the Rail Safety and Standards Board to develop guidance around workplace health behaviours which can impact on long-term health.

Her expertise extends to quality of work, work-life balance and working while caring. She recently project-managed a large evaluation of a national pilot (funded by the Department of Health and Social Care, DWP and the Government Equalities Office) looking at local community, health, and employer interventions to support informal carers who also work, and appeared in front of the Work and Pensions Select Committee to report the findings.

Before joining IES Sally worked at the Health and Safety Laboratory (part of the Health and Safety Executive) and at the Sheffield Institute for Studies on Ageing, as well as the Age and Cognitive Performance Research Centre at the University of Manchester.


1999 University of Cambridge, MRC Cognition and
Brain Sciences Unit
1994 University of Nottingham BSc, Psychology


2004‑2006 Research Fellow, Sheffield Institute for Studies on Ageing, University of Sheffield
1999‑2004 Senior Psychologist, Health and Safety Laboratory

Research publications

Articles and chapters

Conference appearances

Advisory roles and affiliations

  • Member of Education Support Partnership's educator wellbeing research steering group (2018 - 2018)
  • Member of supervisory board for University of Manchester project on wellbeing and mental health of postgraduate researchers (2018 - present)
  • Fellow of the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (2018 - present)
  • Expert witness to Work and Pensions Select Committee evidence session on support for carers (2018 - 2018)
  • Specialist Advisor to Working Age Dementia Study, Public Health England (2015 - 2016)
  • Member of advisory committee for Nuffield Foundation funded research on Lone Parents, Mental Health and Employment (2011 - 2011)
  • Behavioural Specialist for Foods Standards Agency’s Register of Specialists (2018 - present)
  • Peer Review for NIHR, PRP - Stage 2 - NIHR202998 - Supporting employers to narrow disability employment and pay gaps in the UK (2021 - 2021)