Nottingham ESRC Doctoral Training Centre

Image of Alastair Munro

Alastair Munro

ESRC DTC PhD Student, Faculty of Social Sciences



Alastair is a 2nd year PhD student in the School of Geography. He received a first class BA (Hons) degree in Geography in 2015 from the University of Nottingham. In 2016, he completed an MSc in Human Geography, as part of the ESRC 1+3 pathway, at the University of Nottingham. He was awarded with a distinction, winning the John Giggs Prize.

Research Summary

Current Status

PhD (full-time) - currently registered

Research Topic Title

Long-Term Spatiotemporal Changes in Endemic Threshold Populations in England & Wales - A Multi-Disease Study

Research Summary

Alastair's research project is focused on understanding the endemic persistence of childhood diseases, concentrating on the endemic threshold concept, the population size above which disease will persist indefinitely. This concept holds vital implications for disease control today, acting as a guide for vaccination strategy. Past research on endemic thresholds in England and Wales has been dominated by the work of population biologists, who have suggested that the endemic threshold may depend on the spatial structure and the geographical connectivity of subpopulations. However, existing research in this area has been limited to studies of disease activity in island populations, characteristically closed and isolated systems.

Utilising a range of methods, analysing the relationship between various demographic measures, geographical connectivity, regional spatial dynamics of infection and fade-out structure of epidemics, Alastair shall attempt to determine the role of geography in influencing endemic threshold size in regional populations in England and Wales.

Research Interests

Alastair's research interests are primarily focused on medical geography and spatial epidemiology, in particular understanding the endemic nature of childhood infections in England and Wales from a geographical perspective.

Research Supervisors

Professor Matthew Smallman-Raynor

Dr. Adam Algar

Primary Funding Source(s)

ESRC Doctoral Training Centre

Research Institutes, Centres and/or Research Cluster Memberships

Cultural and Historical Geography Research Cluster

Nottingham ESRC Doctoral Training Centre

University Park

telephone: +44 (0) 115 748 4507

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