Christine Carter (2019 cohort)

Christine Carter


About me; I have a BSc (Hons) in Health Studies (University of Sunderland) and MSc in Social Research Methods (South Bank University, London) where my research interests centred on married women adopting the role of carer for their husband with dementia and how nurses working on an older peoples assessment unit thought about and defined sexuality. I have a background working in health and social care settings, primarily working with older people and I remain a registered a mental health nurse. I have worked as a community psychiatric nurse and also as a specialist liaison nurse in acute hospitals, specifically with older people. I have been a lecturer in mental health and older people at City University London and University of the West of England and until recently was a lecturer in Dementia Studies at the Association for Dementia Studies, University of Worcester. Here I worked with Admiral Nurses providing educational support and research around the development of their competency framework.

My research; I am a full-time PhD student in the Division of Psychiatry funded by the ESRC. My PhD focuses upon active ageing and the concept of limitless rather than limited ageing, understanding how people with mild cognitive impairment communicate and understand dementia prevention advice. This is a qualitative study comprising of a literature review followed by participant observations and interviews with people with cognitive impairment who are part of the APPLE-Tree programme of health promotion.

Supervisors:   Professor Paul HiggsDr Penny Rapaport

Selected publications: 

  • Carter, C. and Bray, J. (In Press). Reflecting and Articulating Competency: Using critical reflection as a process for developing a meaningful Competency Framework for Admiral Nurses. Journal of Dementia Care.
  • Carter, C., Bray, J. and Read, K. (2019). The Admiral Nurse Competency Framework: Encouraging engagement and putting it into practice. The Journal of Continuing Education in Nursing, 50(5), 205-210.
  • Carter, C., Bray, J., Read, K., Harrison-Dening, K., Thompson, R. & Brooker, D. (2018). Articulating the unique competencies

Pathway: Mental Health and Mental Health Care

Location: UCL Psychiatry


Twitter: @carterchelt

Jakub Wyszomierski (2019- Cohort)



About me:  Education: I was born and raised in Warsaw, Poland from where I moved to UCL to do my undergraduate degree in BA Human Geography with Quantitative Methods. Throughout my studies I have developed my interest in cartography and data analysis by discovering how the interplay of these two fields of knowledge can be used to solve real-world problems at both local and global scales.

My research: Geo demographic classification is a powerful tool of studying neighbourhoods based on their structure and character. For my PhD, I will study the structure of existing geo demographic classifications (2011 and 2001 Output Area Classifications) to devise suitably adjusted software to create the 2021 OAC when the 2021 small area Census statistics become available. Importantly, I will also focus on how administrative data can be used to support and supplement census outputs. This will allow to develop methods for regularly updating Output Area Classifications. Finally, the research will use consumer data to characterise the overall activity patterns associated with neighbourhoods, and their inter relatedness with workplace zone geographies.

Supervisors: Professor Paul Longley, Professor James Cheshire, Dr Chris Gale

Pathways: Cities, Environment and Development: Human Geography

Location: UCL Department of Geography


Brendan Hallam ( 2019 – Cohort)


About Me: I completed my BSc undergraduate degree in Psychology at the University of Chichester, where my dissertation investigated cross-cultural differences in response styles to Likert-type questionnaires. Since graduating in 2014 I have worked within the field of dementia across the NHS, private health sector, third sector and in academia – both at UCL and at the National Ageing Research Institute (NARI) in Melbourne, Australia. Within the last year, I came back to UCL to complete the Clinical Mental Health Sciences MSc where I conducted a systematic review attempting to outline the neural correlates of Anosognosia and meta-cognition in people living with Alzheimer’s Disease. Overall, for the last nine years I have had experience of working or studying within mental health and dementia. Over the next 3 years I will be completing my PhD at the UCL Research Department of Primary Care & Population Health.

My Research: I am a full-time PhD student based in the UCL Research Department of Primary Care & Population Health, jointly funded by ESRC UBEL DTP and NIHR. The PhD is embedded within the APPLE-Tree programme: Active Prevention in People at risk of dementia: Lifestyle, bEhaviour change and Technology to REducE cognitive and functional decline, led by Prof Claudia Cooper. The PhD is a mixed methods study on reducing dementia risk in UK Primary Care. Comparisons of NHS treatment across people who are at higher and lower risk of developing dementia are explored to outline how active dementia preventative care could be optimised in UK Primary Care. The second part of the PhD will be qualitative semi-structured interviews with people at high risk of developing dementia to explore the barriers and facilitators to engaging in these dementia prevention strategies (such as, increasing exercise, managing cardiovascular risk and addressing social isolation).

The difference my research makes

The aim will be to provide recommendations on how active dementia preventative care could be optimised in UK Primary Care. This research may then potentially benefit those implementing policy around health care. Additionally, it may provide guidance to clinicians and GPs within the primary care sector regarding the most suitable treatment recommendations for active dementia prevention to people with high risk of developing dementia and their families. Therefore, the most important and ambitious implication is to slow cognitive decline and reduce the risk of people developing dementia; by providing further knowledge into how active dementia preventative care could be optimised in UK Primary Care.

SupervisorProf Kate Walters, Prof Claudia Cooper, Prof Irene Petersen, Dr Christina Avgerinou

Pathway: Mental health and Mental health Care

Location: UCL Research Department of Primary Care & Population Health, Royal Free Hospital


Kinnunen, K. M., Rapaport, P., Webster, L., Barber, J., Kyle, S. D., Hallam, B., … & Espie, C. A. (2018). A manual-based intervention for carers of people with dementia and sleep disturbances: an acceptability and feasibility RCT. Health Technology Assessment. 22(71), 1-408. DOI:

Rapaport, P., Webster, L., Horsley, R., Kyle, S. D., Kinnunen, K. M., Hallam, B., … & Livingston, G. (2018). An intervention to improve sleep for people living with dementia: Reflections on the development and co-production of DREAM: START (Dementia Related Manual for Sleep: STrAtegies for RelaTives). Dementia, 17(8), 976-989.                    DOI:

Livingston, G., Barber, J. A., Kinnunen, K. M., Webster, L., Kyle, S. D., Cooper, C., Espie, C., Hallam, B., … & Rapaport, P. (2018). DREAMS-START (Dementia Related Manual for Sleep; Strategies for Relatives) for people with dementia and sleep disturbances: a single-blind feasibility and acceptability randomized controlled trial. International psychogeriatrics, 1-15.  DOI:

Goh, A. M., Gaffy, E., Hallam, B., & Dow, B. (2018). An update on dementia training programmes in home and community care. Current opinion in psychiatry, 31(5), 417-423.    DOI:

Alessandro Toppeta (2019 Cohort)

Alessandro Toppeta

About Me:  I am currently a PhD student in Economics at University College London. I hold a BSc in Economics and Social Sciences from Bocconi University and an MSc in Economics from University College London. I have also been a visiting exchange student at Northwestern University, Department of Economics, during my undergraduate studies. I have taken part in the fieldwork in Ethiopia, North Macedonia and Tunisia.

My Research: I am interested in labour economics, with a focus on human capital accumulation in developed and developing countries. I study the role of expectation formation in fostering investment in skills and reducing poverty.

Supervisor: Professor Pedro Carneiro

Pathway: Economics

Location: Department of Economic