Professor Stephen Peckham

BSc MA(Econ)

of Health Policy

15-17 Tavistock Place
United Kingdom

Stephen is Professor Health Policy and Director of the Department of Health funded Policy Research Unit in Commissioning and the Healthcare System ( He has a joint appointment with the University of Kent where he is Director of the Centre for Health Services Studies ( Stephen joined the School in October 2005 as Senior Lecturer in Health Services Delivery and Organisational Research at the HSRU and was academic director within the NHS Service Delivery and Organisation R&D Programme and subsequently director of the National Co-ordinating Centre for the SDO Programme until its move to Southampton in 2009.

Stephen was previously Reader in Health Policy and Head of Department of Sociology and Social Policy at Oxford Brookes University. He has been involved in health and social policy research and teaching since 1991 and previously worked in the voluntary and local government sectors. He has published widely on primary care and health policy including 'Primary Care in the UK: Policy, Organisation and Management published by Palgrave MacMillan in 2003 and an edited collection on Public Health Ethics and Practice  published by Policy Press in 2009. He has also co-authored and edited a text on the use of case studies in health policy analysis published in 2012 by Policy Press.  


Department of Health Services Research and Policy
Faculty of Public Health and Policy


His main research interests are in health policy analysis, health system organisation, inter-agency collaboration, primary care, public health and public involvement. 

In January 2011 Stephen became director of one of the national Policy Research Units funded by the Department of Health for five years. The Policy Research Unit in Commissioning and the Healthcare System (PRUComm) is a joint venture with the Health Policy, Politics and Organisation research group in the Department of Primary Care, University of Manchester and the Centre for Health Services Studies at the University of kent. Research in the unit includes studies on the new clinical commisisoning groups, competition and collaboration in the new health system,  examining the development of the new public health system in England and teh organisation of primary and community health services. 

In 2010 he led a major evaluation of changes to health services in London where new polysystems were being developed. He  also recently completed a project with CRIPACC, at the University of Hertfordshire, exploring how people with long term conditions are engaged in commissioning health services. Other research includes a recent project examining the public health role of general practice and, as part of PRUComm, leading a project examining the new public health system in England and reviews of evidence and policy initiatives related to GP recruitment and retention, skill-mix in primary care, and QOF . He also has an interest in dental public health health and dental care services. With colleagues in Kent he has undertaken projects on the healthcare workforce and is currently leading a project on the policy support structures for teh implementation of the 2014 Care Act for teh Department of Health and is evaluating the scaling up of a new clinical pathway for emergency laparoscopy surgery. He is part of the team undertaking the national evaluation of New Models of Care and starting a project on scaling up primary care.

Research Area
Complex interventions
Health care financing
Health care policy
Health outcomes
Health policy
Health promotion
Health services research
Health systems
Organisational research
Primary care
Public health
Research : policy relationship
Social and structural determinants of health
Evidence use
Health services
Impact evaluation
International comparisons
Mixed methods
Implementation research
Private sector
Qualitative methods
Policy analysis
Political science
Social Sciences
Social Policy
United Kingdom
Europe & Central Asia (developing only)
Europe & Central Asia (all income levels)
European Union
North America
OECD members

Selected Publications

Developing patient reference groups within general practice: a mixed-methods study.
Smiddy, J. ; Reay, J. ; Peckham, S. ; Williams, L. ; Wilson, P. ;
Br J Gen Pract
How can GPs and community health services work more effectively together?
Bramwell, D. ; Peckham, S. ; Allen, P. ; Checkland, K. ;
Br J Gen Pract
What happens when GPs engage in commissioning? Two decades of experience in the English NHS.
Miller, R. ; Peckham, S. ; Coleman, A. ; McDermott, I. ; Harrison, S. ; Checkland, K. ;
J Health Serv Res Policy
The organisation and delivery of health improvement in general practice and primary care: a scoping study.
Peckham, S; Falconer, J.; Gillam, S.; Hann, A.; Kendall, S.; Nanchahal, K.; Ritchie, B.; Rogers, R.; Wallace, A.;
Health Services and Delivery Research
Commissioning for long-term conditions: hearing the voice of and engaging users - a qualitative multiple case study
Peckham, S.; Wilson, P.; Williams, L.; Smiddy, J.; Kendall, S.; Brooks, F.; Reay, J.; Smallwood, D.; Bloomfield, L.;
Health Services and Delivery Research
Accountable to whom, for what? An exploration of the early development of Clinical Commissioning Groups in the English NHS.
Checkland, K. ; Allen, P. ; Coleman, A. ; Segar, J. ; McDermott, I. ; Harrison, S. ; Petsoulas, C. ; Peckham, S. ;
BMJ Open
See all Professor Stephen Peckham's Publications