Laura Hamilton is a research fellow in food and public health in the Centre for Research in Public Health and Community Care (CRIPACC) at the University of Hertfordshire. Her qualifications include a BSc in Psychology, MSc Research Methods in Psychology and a PhD in Food and Family Income. Laura’s doctoral thesis from UCL examined the role of family income and other factors in understanding the food and eating practices of young people in the UK using a mixed methods approach. Her doctoral research is linked to the multi-national ERC funded ‘Families and Food in Hard Times’ study. Although Laura has a psychology background, she uses a multi-disciplinary social sciences approach, incorporating social theories of practice and behaviour change. She also uses a mixed methods approach (e.g. quantitative, qualitative and visual methods) and has experience of secondary quantitative analysis of large national datasets (e.g. National Diet and Nutrition Survey).
Her research predominantly focuses on the food and eating practices of young people and families in relation to health inequalities and food poverty. These practices include diet quality, eating, cooking, food preparation, purchasing and socialising in relation to food. She is particularly interested in the impact of poverty, family income and school food policies on young people’s food and eating practices at home and in secondary school. She is also interested in the division of family 'foodwork' in relation to women and mothers.