The aim is to develop a critical sociological and humanistic health research and knowledge, that may contribute to improving conditions for good and healthy lives and a healthy society. Practices and concepts of health are theorized as embedded in societal and cultural development and environments, and research must investigate the implications of this, as well as question existing knowledge and discourses on health. Equity, access, sustainability and welfare are guiding perspectives in the study of health strategies and institutional practices, as well as in the study of health in everyday life settings, in communities and as a part of identity and subjective experience.
Main research areas
Health and health promoting practices in everyday lives, in different contexts and demographic areas are studied in order to conceptualize health and the conditions for healthy lives, and in order to create knowledge bases for more socially inclusive and empowering health strategies. As health promotion and disease prevention are linked to the late modern societal strive towards optimization of public health and human growth, we study the character and impact of the phenomena of healthy lifestyles, healthy ageing, recovery, healthy parenting, and healthy schools. Healthism and medicalization are in focus as culture and powerful discourses in many studies. We focus on changes in welfare state arrangements and democratization, and study the new forms of civil involvement, social movements and patient involvement as coproducers in health provision. The transformations of systems and institutions in treatment, rehabilitation, care, education, disease prevention and health promotion are also an important object of research. Professionalization and the cultures and practices of professionals in health systems are also in focus; knowledge regimes, competencies, work-life, conceptualisations and contributions to health systems and the health of citizens.
The privileged research methodologies of the program are such that combine external and internal perspectives, i.e. studies in socio-cultural context, institutional practices with studies in practice knowledge and subjective experiences. The programme focuses on ethnographic, discourse analytical, policy analytical, narrative and biographical, as well as participatory methods, and competencies in these methods will be developed systematically.
Goals and activities
Doing a PhD is not just an individual journey into theory and field work, but the community of practice and the learning space is also what may enhance the learning and development of research and of becoming a doctorate student. PhD. students in the programme will be offered the chance to present and discuss their work at meetings of the Centre for Health Promotion Research and in the “PhD. health cluster” , where students are invited to contribute to readings and theoretical presentations, as well as presenting empirical work.
The health cluster is an open option for all PhD students at RUC working with health related themes, to participate in seminars focused on core concepts of theories on health and society, and important methodologies for sociological and cultural health research. Themes in 2017 i.e.: “The sociology of the body and health promotion”, “Theory on accelleration and the relevance for theorizing healthy living and conditions”, “The double impact of PhD research – in the field of research and in the field of practice, and the implications for producing a thesis” , “Biographical and narrative theories and methodologies in relation to studying health and illness”. We are trying to internationalise this new ph.d. programme. This is being done together with other university partners, that we have collaborated with for many years in the “Nordic Health Promotion Research network”, and with Universities in Britain, Norway and Sweden that we collaborate with on research projects and in education.
Cooperation and partners
The research idea is developed by the aspiring researcher, in relation to research interests in the programme, in relation to an existing or applied larger research project involving senior researchers at RUC, and/or involving research interests of other institutions. We have fifteen years of experience with collaboration in health related ph.d. research together with many partners all over Denmark:, with health promotion units in municipalities and local community actors, hospitals and both psychiatric and somatic units, educational institutions, NGO´s , and with the regional research units in Region Zealand and Region Capital in Denmark. We also have experience with collaboration on ph.d. projects with other universities in Denmark , England, Norway and Sweden.
As PhD student you will be included in the everyday life of the Centre for Health Promotion Research, having a physical workplace alongside senior colleagues and other PhD colleagues. All doctoral students are invited to participate in research groups here or /and in other groups of the university. The PhD programme is part of an environment with several options for university teaching :Danish master, European Master, bachelor, supplementary courses in Health promotion and Health Strategies.