PhD Researcher

My PhD title is The development of dementia supportive communities in Wales

My background

My eclectic professional background has included teaching, broadcasting and several years as a ‘jobbing’ researcher on a variety of social policy and health projects, while being an active trustee of a drug and alcohol charity. Along the way, I’ve picked up an MA in English Language from The University of Leeds, and an MSc in Social Science Research Methods from Cardiff University. I joined the Centre for Innovative Ageing in 2012 as a part-time Research Assistant exploring the mental and physical health literacy of older people, and subsequently also worked as part of the Cognitive Functioning and Ageing in Society (CFAS) team.

My research

My ESRC–funded PhD started in the latter part of 2016, and my research topic investigates the development of dementia supportive communities in Wales, with an interest in both the bio-political and citizenship aspects of this developing field. I have a keen interest in qualitative methodologies, and have developed the thesis using current practice and theory in human geography, as well as more experimental interdisciplinary approaches that draw on post-structuralist, literary and critical gerontology resources. 

For my main case study, I have worked closely with a particular community in South East Wales as it develops its own practical ideas around what it currently means to be dementia supportive, while also looking at the emerging types of active (bio)social citizenship among those affected by dementia, including emerging activist practice.


Dr Charles Musselwhite, Dr Angharad Closs-Stevens


Picture of Aelwyn Williams