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Post-doctoral Researchers

Dr Sheelah Connolly


Research fellow: Sheelah Connolly

Sheelah Connolly

Academic background

BA (Economics and Law), National University of Ireland, Galway, 1999

MA (Economics), National University of Ireland, Galway, 2000

MSc (Health Economics), University of York, 2002

Lecturer (Economics – fixed term), National University of Ireland, Galway, 2002-2004

PhD (Epidemiology), Queen’s University Belfast, 2008

Research fellow (Epidemiology), Queen’s University Belfast, 2004-


Area of research

To undertake research using the Northern Ireland Longitudinal Study (NILS), and to facilitate and support multidisciplinary research within the Centre for Health Improvement initiative using NILS data.


Project outline

Over the three year period of the fellowship, I will be involved in a number of research projects and initiatives which will facilitate the development of the NILS and support multidisciplinary research within the Centre for Health Improvement. Examples of such projects include


* Using the Northern Ireland Family Resource Survey (FRS) to model an estimate of household income for inclusion in the NILS. By identifying variables predictive of household income and common to the FRS and the NILS datasets, it will be possible to incorporate a measure a household income to the NILS dataset, which could be used in a variety of research projects.

* Developing a link between Child Health Records and the NILS. Linking Child Health Records to the NILS dataset will open up a body of research looking at how factors at birth and early life influence health (including morbidity and mortality), socio-economic and employment status later in life.

* Linking in area based variables to the Health and Wellbeing Survey. Area based variables – including an indicator of area deprivation and social fragmentation – will be linked into the Health and Wellbeing Survey and will be used to address a number of research questions relating to the impact of area of residence on health behaviour.


Chief investigator

Dr Dermot O’Reilly


Period of fellowship

October 2009 to September 2012