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Professor Simon Dyson

Job: Professor of Applied Sociology

Faculty: Health and Life Sciences

School/department: School of Allied Health Sciences

Address: De Montfort, University, The Gateway, Leicester, LE1 9BH.

T: +44 (0)116 257 7751



Social Media:


Personal profile

Simon Dyson is Professor of Applied Sociology and is Director of the Unit for the Social Study of Thalassaemia and Sickle Cell at De Montfort University in the United Kingdom.

His research interests include all social aspects of the world’s leading genetic conditions, sickle cell thalassaemia. He has had seven books published, including Ethnicity and Screening for Sickle Cell and Thalassaemia; Sickle Cell and Deaths in Custody (with Gwyneth Boswell) and Genetics and Global Public Health: Sickle Cell and Thalassaemia (with Karl Atkin).

He has written numerous articles on the social and political aspects of sickle cell, including such topics as the politics of racism and sickle cell; the experiences of young people with sickle cell, sickle cell and school education, and sickle cell in Africa. He is a scientific advisor to the UK Sickle Cell Society and has spoken on sickle cell at international conferences in North America, South America, Europe, India and Africa.

Research group affiliations

Unit for the Social Study of Thalassaemia and Sickle Cell.

Research interests/expertise

  • Social aspects of sickle cell and thalassemia.
  • Sickle cell
  • Thalassaemia
  • Sociology
  • Social policy
  • Social theory
  • Social research methods


BSc(Soc); MPhil; PhD; DSc

Membership of external committees

Chair, Worldwide Initiative for the Social Study of Haemoglobinopathies (WISSH) (2010 - 2015)

UHL NHS Trust Advisory Committee on Sickle Cell and Thalassaemia (2002 - date)

Membership of professional associations and societies

UK Forum on Haemoglobin Disorders 1995 - date.

Current research students

Bolanle OLA (Nigeria) Living with Sickle Cell Disease and Depression.

Rahimot GBADAMOSI (UK) Sickle Cell in Schools

Roanna MAHARAJ (UK) Transition in Thalassaemia

Externally funded research grants information

Living with Sickle Cell or Beta-Thalassaemia Trait: Implications for Identity or Social Life
Economic and Social Research Council
January 2012 - January 2014.
Principal Investigator: Professor Karl Atkin (University of York)
Collaborators: Waqar Ahmad (Pro-VC Middlesex University); Elizabeth Anionwu (Emeritus Professor, University of West London)

Involving Fathers in Ante-Natal Screening for Sickle Cell Disorders: Improving Informed Decision-Making
Research for Patient Benefit (National Institutes for Health)
January 2012 - January 2014
Principal Investigator: Professor Karl Atkin (University of York)
Collaborators: Leeds Clinical Genetics Service, Sickle Cell Society

Sickle Cell Open Online Topics and Educational Resources
Higher Education Academy/JISC
August 2010-August 2011
Principal Investigator: Viv Rolfe (DMU)
Collaborators: Mark Fowler (DMU)

Education for Minority Ethnic Pupils: Young People with Sickle Cell Disease
Economic and Social Research Council
September 2006-February 2011
Principal Investigator
Collaborators: Sue Dyson, Lorraine Culley (DMU); Karl Atkin (York); Jack Demaine (Loughborough)

Professional esteem indicators

Scientific Advisor, Sickle Cell Society, 2008-date

Editorial board Ethnicity and Health, 2011 - date.

Case studies

The work of the Unit for the Social Study of Thalassaemia and Sickle Cell has been used by the All Party Parliamentary Group on Sickle Cell at thalassaemia under Dianne Abbott MP at Westminster.The Social Aspects of Sickle Cell Disease and Thalassaemia in Young People.

The Guide to Sickle Cell and School Policy has been used by the Department for Education

Simon Dyson