Skip to content
Open menu Close menu

Professor Allan Kellehear

Position50th Anniversary Professor (End of Life Care) and Academic Director for the Digital Health Enterprise Zone (DHEZ - Academic)
LocationRe: Centre
Telephone01274 236388


Professor Allan Kellehear is a medical and public health sociologist with interests in death, dying and end of life care. He received his PhD in Sociology from the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia and is a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences.

Most of Professor Kellehear's work examines behaviour at the end of life in palliative care, intensive care and aged care contexts.  He has conducted major sociological and social psychological research on the human experience of dying.  He has also developed public health models for care of the dying, the bereaved and caregivers.  These models are based on the application of health promotion, community development, and social ecology ideas and principles.  Government policy interests in Australia, India and the UK have taken up his particular adaptation of these models for end of life care.  In the UK, the Department of Health, the NHS in England, the NHS in Scotland, the National Council for Palliative Care, and the major charity Help the Hospices have adopted these ideas in their current end of life care policies.

In addition to two previous chairs in England (at the Universities of Bath and Middlesex), Professor Kellehear held the chair of Palliative Care at La Trobe University in Melbourne, Australia for nearly 10 years.  In 2003-4 Allan also held the competitive Annual Chair of Australian Studies at the University of Tokyo.  In addition to these posts, Professor Kellehear has held visiting or honorary professorships in Australia, Austria, Canada, Hong Kong, the Republic of Ireland and the UK as well as a Distinguished Lectureship at a Presidential Library (Clinton) in the USA.

Research Areas

• Public health policies, service sector development, and practice models of care in end of life care (esp. palliative care, aged care, cancer care, and intensive care)

• International health policies and practices for end-of-life care

• Sociological and policy perspectives on ageing

• History, sociology, and social psychology of conduct and experiences at the end of life

• Mystical/religious/altered states associated with dying and bereavement

• Sociology of health and illness

• Qualitative and unobtrusive methodologies in health research

• ‘New’ public health - health promotion, community development, and social ecology


Allan is the author or co-author of 11 books and 100 articles. He is also the editor or co-editor of 12 further books.

The writings most representative of his academic contributions are:

    (2014) The Inner Life of the Dying Person (Columbia University Press)

    (2007) A Social History of Dying (Cambridge University Press)

    (2005) Compassionate Cities: Public Health and End-of-Life Care (Routledge)

    (1999) Health-Promoting Palliative Care (Oxford University Press)

    (1996) Experiences Near Death: Beyond Medicine and Religion (Oxford University Press)

    (1990) Dying of Cancer: The Final Year of Life (Harwood Academic)

Share this

Upcoming events

View all events »