Professor Lisa McDaid

Director, Institute for Social Scie

Faculty of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences
+61 7 336 56070


Lisa McDaid is Director of the Institute for Social Science Research (ISSR) and Professor of Social Sciences and Health at The University of Queensland. Lisa has an international reputation grounded in knowledge exchange and partnership. Her research has made significant contributions to identifying solutions to health inequalities among the most disadvantaged and marginalised in our society. Lisa is experienced in how to engage communities at high risk of poor health and wellbeing in health improvement research and in developing new methods of co-production for intervention development.

Lisa is a Social Scientist and obtained her PhD in Medical Sociology from the University of Glasgow in 2007. She has been Chief-Investigator on research grants c.AU$100M and has authored over 100 publications. Lisa is also an Associate Director of the Centre for Research on Families and Relationships, a consortium research centre based at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland.

Research Interests

  • Solution-focused social science and health
    This work seeks to apply social science to real world problems to improve health and wellbeing
  • Health inequalities
    This work seeks to understand and improve health among the most disadvantaged in our society, including working with LGBTQ+ communities
  • Intervention development and evaluation
    This work focuses on working with stakeholders to develop health improvement interventions and test and implement solutions at scale, with a particular focus on peer-led network interventions
  • Community participative research
    Engaging with communities to understand lived experience and co-design health improvement interventions
  • Salutogenesis and assets-based interventions
    Research that focuses on enabling strengths and protective factors and resources of individuals and communities, rather than deficits and risks
  • Syndemics
    This research explores the co-occurrence of inter-related health conditions and harmful social contexts and uses it as a framework for understanding health among disadvantaged groups

Research Impacts

Lisa has led on and contributed to projects that have had significant impact on policy and practice. Lisa was the lead of the MRC Gay Men's Sexual Health Survey, Scotland from 2005-2014 and findings from this survey have shaped HIV prevention policies in Scotland, the UK and Europe. This research informed the Scottish Government’s policy decision to publicly fund PrEP (a drug that can prevent the transmission of HIV, if taken before sex) for HIV prevention in Scotland and has had significant impact further afield, informing international policy guidance on PrEP implementation with marginalised populations. Lisa was a member of a number of UK advisory groups including the Scottish Parliament Cross Party Group on Sexual Health & Blood Borne Viruses and the British Association of Sexual Health and HIV (BASHH) Gender and Sexual Minorities Special Interest Group. Her work has been cited in numerous policy documents including the Scottish Government's Sexual Health and Blood Borne Virus Framework and the BASHH 2016 National Guidelines for Sexual Health Care in Men who have Sex with Men. Much of Lisa's research has had an embedded knowledge exchange element within it and she ensures that her research is conducted in partnership with practitioners, policy makers, non-goverment organisations, and the communities most affected by her work.


  • Doctor of Philosophy, University of Glasgow


View all Publications


  • Doctor Philosophy

  • Doctor Philosophy

View all Supervision


Book Chapter

  • Fatima, Yaqoot, Cleary, Anne, King, Stephanie, Solomon, Shaun, McDaid, Lisa, Hasan, Md Mehedi, Al Mamun, Abdullah and Baxter, Janeen (2022). Cultural identity and social and emotional wellbeing in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children. Family dynamics over the life course: foundations, turning points and outcomes. (pp. 57-70) edited by Janeen Baxter, Jack Lam, Jenny Povey, Rennie Lee and Stephen R. Zubrick. Cham, Switzerland: Springer. doi: 10.1007/978-3-031-12224-8_4

Journal Article

Conference Publication

Other Outputs

Grants (Administered at UQ)

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Current Supervision

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

  • Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor