Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law

Sociology and Social Policy

Contact Details

Dr Ana Manzano-Santaella

Lecturer in Health & Social Policy

Having worked in acute healthcare settings for a decade, I became interested in theory-based evaluation of health and social policies. My specialist area is the evaluation of complex applied healthcare interventions using the realist approach (Pawson & Tilley, 1997; Pawson, 2006).  

Research Interests

My research work has involved applying a range of social research methods to evaluate healthcare interventions. I am interested in exploring the relationship between policy and practice and the role of front-line practitioners in programme implementation. More specifically, my interests are:

  • Evaluation theory and methodology (realist evaluation and realist synthesis).
  • Evaluation of complex systems, specifically health and social programmes in acute care.
  • Deceased organ donation
  • Delayed discharges (“bed-blocking”) in acute care
  • Health crime
  • Sociology of health & illness
  • Welfare

I am interested in the analysis of ethical issues that are raised when people are involved as participants in research.  I have been a member of the School of Healthcare Ethics Committee (SHREC) and I am currently a member of the AREA Faculty Research Ethics Committee.

My previous research includes a realist evaluation of a national programme that uses financial incentives to increase effectiveness in acute hospitals. I am also co-author, with Prof Ray Pawson, of ‘Realist Diagnostic Workshop’, which discusses standards and common problems in realist evaluations. Currently, I am working on the development of a comparative realist evaluation of systems for consent to organ donation in the UK and Spain (study funded by WUN-International Research Collaborations (FIRC-IPF) International Partnership Fund).


My research-led teaching includes health and social policy, the sociology of health and illness and social research methods. I currently convene Sociology of Health & Illness, and Welfare & Crime. I also teach the postgraduate research training module Evaluation Research. My guest lectures are on Health Crime, and Mixed Methods.

PhD Supervision

Keen to supervise potential students with an interest in the following areas:

  • Evaluation of health and social programmes and policies.
  • Organ donation for transplantation
  • Delayed hospital discharges
  • Health crime
  • Sociology of health & illness
  • Financial incentives in health and social interventions

Key Publications

Manzano, A (2014- In Press) Patient responsibilities: nudges, social determinants of health, and the case of organ donation. In Social Policies and Social Control: New Perspectives on the not-so-Big Society. Editors: Sanders T and Harrison M. Policy Press, Bristol

Manzano, A. and Pawson, R. (2013-In Press) Evaluating consent to deceased organ donation: The need for programme theory, Journal of Healthcare Organization & Management.

Manzano, A., Ziegler, L. and Bennett, M. (2013-In press) Exploring interference from analgesia in patients with cancer pain: A longitudinal qualitative study. Journal of Clinical Nursing.

Caballero F, Puig M, Leal J, Huayhualla C, Manzano-Santaella A, Ris J, Benito S (2012) Family interview guide for requesting organ donation for transplantation. An evaluation using the appraisal of guidelines research and evaluation instrument (AGREE II) Organ, Tissues and Cells November, 15(3): 163-169.

Manzano-Santaella, A. (2012) Measuring ‘bed-blocking’: conceptual and methodological challenges. Clinical Medicine 12(4):308-309

Pawson, R. and Manzano-Santaella, A. (2012) A realist diagnostic workshop. Evaluation: The International Journal of Theory, Research & Practice. 18(2):176-191

Manzano-Santaella, A. (2011) A Realistic Evaluation of Fines for Hospital Discharges: Incorporating the History of Programme Evaluations in the Analysis. Evaluation: The International Journal of Theory, Research & Practice, 17(1): 1-16 doi:10.1177/1356389010389913

Manzano-Santaella, A; Goode, B. (2011) ‘Delayed Discharges in Mental Health Beds’. British Journal of Healthcare Management, 17(3): 113-119

Manzano-Santaella, A (2010). ‘Disentangling the impact of multiple innovations to reduce delayed hospital discharges’. Journal of Health Service Research and Policy, 15(1): 41-46

Manzano-Santaella, A. (2010) ‘From “bed-blocking” to delayed discharges. Precursors and interpretations of a contested concept’. Health Services Management Research Journal, 23: 121-127 doi:10.1258/hsmr.2009.009026


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