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Durham University

Research & business

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Dr Frances Hillier-Brown

Telephone: +44 (0) 191 33 41483

Contact Dr Frances Hillier-Brown (email at


Frances joined the Department of Sport and Exercise Sciences as a Teaching Fellow in January 2018, having previously worked at Durham, Teesside and Newcastle universities as a Research Associate in Public Health. She has a BSc (Hons) in Biochemistry from Leeds University and an MSc in Human Nutrition, specialising in Public Health, from Glasgow University. In 2012, Frances was awarded a PhD in Health Studies, exploring methods of diet and physical activity assessment, from Durham University.

Frances has worked on a number of large multi-disciplinary research projects, including systematic reviews of the determinants of weight gain (funded by the World Cancer Research Fund), and the effectiveness of public health interventions at reducing socio-economic inequalities in obesity (funded by the National Institute of Health Research). She has also worked on a number of public health intervention studies, including the Community Challenge project (funded by the Food Standards Agency) and the NIHR School for Public Health research funded ‘Foodscape’ project, exploring the feasibility and acceptability of interventions aimed at improving the healthiness of takeaway menu options. She has most recently worked on the HiNews project exploring health inequalities, and the effects of different health systems, across Europe. 

Frances is interested in effective strategies for behaviour change and obesity prevention, including population and upstream approaches; measurement of diet and physical activity behaviours and intervention evaluation; and social determinants of health and intervention generated health inequalities. Frances is a member of the Association for the Study of Obesity, an Associate member of Fuse: The Centre of Translational Research in Public Health, a core member of the Wolfson Research Institute for Health and Wellbeing Physical Activity Special Interest Group, and a founding member of the Equal North Research and Practice Network


Journal Article