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Death and Dying


Death, dying and bereavement has been one of our major research and teaching themes for over twenty years. The synergy between research and teaching has been secured through vibrant student recruitment to the Death, Dying and bereavement module (K220) and End of life care (KG001) as well as securing research funding in this area. The group is multi-disciplinary with a core in the social sciences and qualitative methodologies.

Current research: end-of-life care; death, including all forms of reproductive and neonatal loss; bereavement and memorialisation. Our research focuses on both the theoretical and practice-related dimensions which are related to death and dying. Examples of research include the way in which decisions are made (or not made) in palliative care; the impact of stillbirth and neonatal death on parents; befriending schemes for people in the last year of life; and nurses’ first encounters with the dead body. Current team members have an interest in decision-making, core concepts around end-of-life care, death and bereavement across the life-course.

Latest activity: the Death and Dying group recently held an internal sandpit event to help build research networks and capacity. From this, the group is developing several projects, on both individual and collaborative levels, to pursue the research topics outlined above and will likely include a series of workshops and publications.

For more information on this area, visit the Death, Dying and Bereavement page on the OU Internet.

If you are interested in being a part of the Death & Dying Special Interest Group please email Death-and-Dying@open.ac.uk where further details will be provided.

Additional Researchers Include:

  • Carol Komaromy
  • Erica Borgstrom
  • Kerry Jones
  • Sam Murphy

Events

The Death and Dying Research Group will be hosting another series of monthly seminars with fascinating presentations on the global perspective of palliative care.

Each month we intend to showcase a different theme on death and dying across the life-course by engaging leading academics and professionals, and are free to all interested in attending. The seminars will alternate each month between a traditional academic seminar and a more interactive and visual mini-workshop. There will be time in both for discussion and debate.

More dates and topics to be confirmed. Sign up to our mailing list to be sent details nearer the time by contacting wels-research-events@open.ac.uk. Please also use this email to register your interest for a seminar as space is very limited.

Death and Dying Seminar Series Poster

Details and recordings of past seminars can be found here.

Video Series

Walter Perry the founding Vice Chancellor of the Open University had a vision for the university to be at the cutting edge of both education and research and was instrumental in ensuring that the OU engaged in research in Health and Wellbeing. 50 years on we take a look at some of the exciting work taking place today. ‘Walter was adamant that the university was committed to high-quality...

MK Innovates Festival

The festival showcased Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics excellence in Milton Keynes on 11th October 2019. Open University's Health and Wellbeing Priority Research Area hosted a stand to showcase the breadth and depth of our research. A few pictures posted here from the...

Early Career Research Grant awarded by the AHRC

Dr Victoria Newton, Senior Research Fellow, has been awarded an Early Career Research Grant by the AHRC for a project titled Reproductive Bodylore: the role of vernacular knowledge in women's contraceptive decision-making. The project draws together folklore studies and health research. An approach which is uniquely innovative and novel. The study of vernacular knowledge can tell us much about...

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