David’s research interests focus on occupational therapy with people with intellectual disabilities and in particular those with complex needs, including profound intellectual and multiple disabilities. He is interested in how we can support and enable people to engage in occupations/ activities and how occupational justice can be promoted, in particular through improving the quality of support provided to individuals.
In the first of a series of research projects, David, Amanda Knowles and Diana Ramsey have used action research to develop a prototype Supporting Engaging Environments clinical reasoning/ thinking tool. This is to be used by occupational therapists to think through how best to work with the support networks of people with intellectual disabilities when seeking to get recommendations adopted to improve the quality of support provided. Future research will validate and evaluate the prototype tool.
David’s PhD supervisory interests include occupational therapy and occupational science, particularly (though not exclusively) in relation to people with intellectual disabilities. He is also interested in research related to ensuring high quality support and care of people with severe and profound intellectual disabilities and others with complex and high support needs.
His primary expertise is in qualitative research with particular interests in action research, case study and ethnographic methodologies and narrative research. He has a particular interest in finding ethical means to involve as research participants those who may not have capacity in order that their needs may be researched and their support improved. If relevant to his research interests and expertise, he would be very interested in supporting those wishing to undertake a PhD at Brighton with development of their research proposal.
You can find out more about David's teaching and research here