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Dr Rachel Scott

MSc Programme Director

United Kingdom

My research reflects my interdisciplinary background, drawing from demography, epidemiology, sociology and public health and using quantitative and qualitative methods. My work considers how social-contextual factors, locally and cross-nationally, shape individual sexual and reproductive behaviours, particularly abortion and young people’s experiences, and how reproductive health service provision can best meet people’s needs and preferences. I also work on improving data quality and measurement of sexual behaviour and reproductive health outcomes, including abortion, in surveys.

I joined LSHTM in 2009 to do a Masters in Demography & Health after a BSc in Human Sciences at UCL. Following a couple of years away, working at Inserm (the French National Institute for Health and Medical Research), in Paris and King's College London, working on two abortion related projects, I returned to LSHTM in 2012 to pursue a PhD in the Department of Population Health, during which I also spent time back at Inserm and working with the Guttmacher Institute in New York.

Affiliations

Faculty of Epidemiology and Population Health

Teaching

I am co-Programme Director for the online MSc in Sexual and Reproductive Health Policy & Programming.

I teach on the MSc modules Foundations in Reproductive Health; Sexual Health; Research Design and Analysis; and Safe Abortion Policy & Programming.

Research

My two most recent projects are the Global Study of Sexual Behaviour, a project that brought together representative survey data from over 60 countries worldwide to examine variation across settings and over time, and the SACHA Study, a large collaborative project that seeks to generate an evidence base to inform how abortion care can best be provided in Britain. On SACHA I co-led a work-package looking into how abortion is provided, and regulated, in other countries, and the lessons that can be learned for Britain, as well as working on the qualitative arm of the project which investigated the views and preferences of people with recent experience of abortion in Britain.

Previous projects have focussed mainly on young people and sexual and reproductive health, using qualitative and quantitive approaches. These include analyses of underreporting of abortions in surveys in the UK, US and France, a review of young people's engagement with pornography and digital intimacies, a qualitative study exploring young women's experiences of contraception and conceptualisations of pregnancy scares in England, a trial of post-abortion contraceptive counselling in England, and a qualitative study on representations of abortion in West Africa.
Research Area
Adolescent health
Gender
Health inequalities
Reproductive health
Sexual and reproductive health
Sexual health
Social and structural determinants of health
Anthropology
Demography

Selected Publications

Improving experience of medical abortion at home in a changing therapeutic, technological and regulatory landscape: a realist review
Baraitser, P; FREE, C; NORMAN, W; LEWANDOWSKA, M; MEIKSIN, R; Palmer, M; SCOTT, R; FRENCH, R; WELLINGS, K; Ivory, A; Wong, G; The SACHA study team,;
2022
medRxiv
Should COVID-specific arrangements for abortion continue? The views of women experiencing abortion in Britain during the pandemic.
Lohr, PA; LEWANDOWSKA, M; MEIKSIN, R; SALARIA, N; Cameron, S; SCOTT, RH; Reiter, J; PALMER, MJ; FRENCH, RS; WELLINGS, K;
2022
BMJ SEXUAL & REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH
Accessing emergency contraception pills from pharmacies: the experience of young women in London.
Turnbull, G; SCOTT, RH; Mann, S; WELLINGS, K;
2020
BMJ Sexual & Reproductive Health
What and how: doing good research with young people, digital intimacies, and relationships and sex education.
SCOTT, RH; Smith, C; Formby, E; Hadley, A; Hallgarten, L; Hoyle, A; MARSTON, C; McKee, A; Tourountsis, D;
2020
SEX EDUCATION-SEXUALITY SOCIETY AND LEARNING
Trends in sexual activity and demand for and use of modern contraceptive methods in 74 countries: a retrospective analysis of nationally representative surveys.
SLAYMAKER, E; SCOTT, RH; PALMER, MJ; PALLA, L; MARSTON, M; Gonsalves, L; Say, L; WELLINGS, K;
2020
The Lancet Global Health
Conducting sexualities research: an outline of emergent issues and case studies from ten Wellcome-funded projects
Kneale, D; French, R; Spandler, H; Young, I; Purcell, C; Boden, Z; Brown, SD; Callwood, D; Carr, S; Dymock, A; Eastham, R; Gabb, J; Henley, J; Jones, C; McDermott, E; Mkhwanazi, N; Ravenhill, J; Reavey, P; SCOTT, R; Smith, C; Smith, M; Thomas, J; Tingay, K;
2019
Wellcome Open Research
Comparing reporting of abortions in three nationally representative surveys: methodological and contextual influences.
SCOTT, RH; Bajos, N; WELLINGS, K; SLAYMAKER, E;
2019
BMJ sexual & reproductive health
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