hero image
Professor Jane South - Leeds Beckett. Leeds, West Yorkshire, GB

Professor Jane South

Professor | Leeds Beckett University

Leeds, West Yorkshire, UNITED KINGDOM

Jane South is Professor of Healthy Communities working in the field of community engagement and public health.



Professor Jane South Publication Professor Jane South Publication




Prof Jane South   Community action and community resilience in a time of crisis



Professor South is Professor of Healthy Communities working in the field of community engagement and public health. Her research focuses on how community life and volunteering contribute to good health.

As an academic leader, Jane has been at the forefront of establishing an evidence base for integrating community-centred approaches into public health. She has published widely on community-based prevention and is an expert on volunteer and peer interventions. From 2014-2023, she worked as a national adviser on communities for Public Health England (later the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities). She authored the PHE & NHS England (2015) Guide to community centred approaches for health and wellbeing, which has had considerable impact in policy and practice.

Passionate about research that makes a difference, Jane established CommUNIty - an innovative community-campus partnership for health initiative aimed at strengthening university links with local communities. She is also a Fellow of the Faculty of Public Health.

Industry Expertise (4)

Writing and Editing


Health and Wellness


Areas of Expertise (7)


Community Health

Public Health


Health Promotion


Active Citizenship

Languages (1)

  • English

Event Appearances (1)

Peers in Prison Settings (PiPS) Expert Symposium

Peers in Prison Settings (PiPS) Expert Symposium  Institute of Health and Wellbeing, Leeds Metropolitan University

Articles (5)

Sustaining and strengthening community resilience throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond

Perspectives in Public Health

2020 The scale of community action in the UK since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic has been significant. Community-based organisations, national charities, mutual aid groups and thousands of individual volunteers, including the 750,000 NHS volunteer responders, have stepped forward to support those made more vulnerable by the pandemic.

view more

Community engagement in deprived neighbourhoods during the COVID-19 crisis: perspectives for more resilient and healthier communities

Health Promotion International

2021 The current COVID-19 pandemic confines people to their homes, disrupting the fragile social fabric of deprived neighbourhoods and citizen’s participation options. In deprived neighbourhoods, community engagement is central in building community resilience, an important resource for health and a prerequisite for effective health promotion programmes.

view more

An evidence-based framework on community-centred approaches for health: England, UK

Health Promotion International

2017 Community participation is a central concept for health promotion, covering a breadth of approaches, purposes and activities. This paper reports on a national knowledge translation project in England, UK, which resulted in a conceptual framework and typology of community-based approaches, published as national guidance.

view more

A knowledge translation project on community-centred approaches in public health

Journal of Public Health

2018 This article examines the development and impact of a national knowledge translation project aimed at improving access to evidence and learning on community-centred approaches for health and wellbeing. Structural changes in the English health system meant that knowledge on community engagement was becoming lost and a fragmented evidence base was seen to impact negatively on policy and practice.

view more

Putting the public (back) into public health: leadership, evidence and action

Journal of Public Health

2019 There is a strong evidence-based rationale for community capacity building and community empowerment as part of a strategic response to reduce health inequalities. Within the current UK policy context, there are calls for increased public engagement in prevention and local decision-making in order to give people greater control over the conditions that determine health.

view more