Skip to main content

Advanced Search

Advanced Search

Current Filters

Filter your query

Publication Types



Matilda Allen

2021–22 U.K. Harkness Fellow in Health Care Policy and Practice; Specialty Registrar in Public Health, Health Education England

headshot of Matilda Allen

Placement: University of California, San Francisco

Mentor: Caroline Fichtenberg, Ph.D., Managing Director, Social Interventions Research and Evaluation Network (SIREN); Research Scientist, Department of Family and Community Medicine, University of California, San Francisco

Co-mentor: Laura Gottlieb, M.D., M.P.H., Professor of Family and Community Medicine, University of California, San Francisco

Project: Rebuilding Communities and Improving Health: A Comparison of Approaches Taken by Healthcare Organizations to Tackle the Social Determinants of Health at a Population Level

Matilda Allen, M.Sc., is a 2021–22 U.K. Harkness Fellow in Health Care Policy and Practice. She is a public health specialist with experience in academic and policy research, local government implementation, and health protection. Allen has led and published high-profile research work, developed multiagency stakeholder networks, and provided expert advice and guidance across the health and care system at local, regional, and national levels. Her work has focused on tackling health inequalities through action on the social determinants of health, with a particular interest in how these can be tackled through healthcare practice and the policies of healthcare institutions. Allen has led programs of work on social value, social prescribing, and most recently, Anchor Institutions. She holds two master’s degrees from the London School of Economics and Political Science, in Public Health and Philosophy and Public Policy.

Project Overview: This project will identify and compare strategies being taken by healthcare delivery organizations to tackle the social determinants of health (SDoH) by acting at a population or community level. Such actions include strategies to improve early years, education, income, employment, and social and physical environments. These have the potential to reduce health inequalities, improve health and well-being for all, and reduce pressure on the healthcare system. There is also a clear opportunity to build and increase action on the SDoH as a key component of helping communities to recover from the health, social, and economic impacts of COVID-19.

The project will review existing evidence and conduct case studies to 1) explore strong approaches to tackling the SDoH and identify any common features that could enable a typology of key types of approach to be developed; 2) compare these approaches by identifying facilitators and barriers to successful implementation, and comparing approaches taken to measuring impact; and 3) build understanding of how these approaches are contributing to community recovery post-COVID-19 and how they are incorporating equity considerations.