Dr Manuela Colombini


Assistant Professor
Gender-based violence

15-17 Tavistock Place
United Kingdom

I am a social scientist with a background in health policy and systems analysis. My research has primarily focused on conducting formative and evaluation research to explore new intervention approaches to address violence against women (VAW) in the health sector; and translating evidence from promising interventions within different LMIC settings. I have conducted research in gender-based violence, HIV and sexual and reproductive health services in sub-saharan Africa and Asia for the past 14 years.

I hold an MSc in gender and development from the London School of Economics. After having previously worked for nearly 5 years on gender and reproductive health and rights issues (focussing on development and running of capacity bulding modules) at the World Health Organization, I joined the School end September 2005. My PhD was on the barriers and enabling factors affecting the integration of health sector response to intimate partner violence in Malaysia.


Department of Global Health and Development


Centre for Evaluation
Maternal, Adolescent, Reproductive & Child Health (MARCH)


I co-organised the Family Planning Programmes module in 2013-2015. I currently teach on distant learning courses (MSc Public Health in developing countries), and teached on the Family Planning Programmes; Health Policy, Process and Power (seminar leader); Research, Design and Analysis (Ethics);  Diploma in Tropical Nursing; Short course on Researching gender-based violence.


My main research interests include gender-based violence and health sector responses, and integration of SRH  and HIV services.

I currently work on two research projects: 1) assessing the systems readiness of primary health clinics in Brazil and Palestine to integrate intimate partner violence into their services (MRC Global Challenges study); 2) assessing the feasibility and acceptability of a combination of gender-based violence and HIV prevention package for young girls in South Africa and Tanzania (EMPOWER study).

I conducted one of the first health policy and systems evaluations of the One Stop Crisis Centres in Malaysia (as part of my PhD). In particular, I analysed challenges and enabling factors of a specific health model where services to abused women have been integrated into available services at secondary and tertiary care hospitals.  Following on from this, I was a researcher on a larger study (INTEGRA) in Kenya and Swaziland. As part of Integra, I conducted research on providers’ and clients’ experiences with integrated care, and also on women’s views and experiences of partner violence following disclosure of their HIV status. Since 2013 to date, I have led two projects as Principal Investigator to evaluate: 1) the integration of IPV into antenatal care settings and health policies (in Nepal and Sri Lanka), and 2) the implementation of a brief counselling intervention for pregnant women who experienced IPV (South Africa).  


Research Area
Health care policy
Health policy
Health services research
Health systems
Sexual health
Health workers
Implementation research
Qualitative methods
Reproductive health
Policy analysis
Political science
Social Sciences
Disease and Health Conditions
Sri Lanka
South Africa
East Asia & Pacific (developing only)
South Asia
Sub-Saharan Africa (developing only)
See all Dr Manuela Colombini's Publications