Dr Amanda Atkinson

Public Health Institute

Dr Amanda Marie Atkinson is a Senior Researcher within the Public Health Institute. Since joining the Institute in 2006, she has worked on a range of research projects, predominantly relating to young people's (gendered) drinking cultures, (gendered) substance use and the role and influence of media and marketing. Her general research interests relate to consumption and identity, media representations and gender relations. She is currently Principle Investigator on an ESRC grant which explores the nature, creation, impact and regulation of gendered alcohol brand and nightlife marketing in the age of contemporary feminism(s) and social activism (https://equalisenightlifeproject.com/). It considers the role of brand and venue marketing that reproduces gender stereotypes and the sexualisation of women, as well as the use of 'social cause' marketing which is said to promote equality, on identity making and experiences of drinking and the night time environment. This includes the inequalities that exist in these spaces such as unwanted sexual attention and exclusion. Methods include an analysis of alcohol brand and venue marketing, group discussions and interviews with women and LGTBQ+ people using photo elicitation, interviews with those working in brand and venue marketing and regulation (e.g. marketers, managers, dancers and 'hostesses' (i.e. embodied marketing) and arts based participatory work shops (using photography, sculpture, illustration). Related studies include an exploration of women's experiences of working in the craft beer industry and how this compares to the image of craft beer as 'progressive', and a study exploring the sobriety journeys of female sober bloggers/influencers, how they negotiate alcohol marketing within their lived experiences of sobriety, and their content as counter narratives to marketing messages.

Her research uses both qualitative and quantitative methods (with a specialism in the former), creative/artistic research dissemination and she has conducted research with a range of groups, including children and young people, people who use drugs, people in prison, survivors of domestic violence, health practitioners, policy makers and media professionals. She is supervisor for a number of PhDs related to the NPS market; drug user identity; drug risk communication and harm reduction; and young peoples health and social media, and teaches on the BSci Public Health and MSci Public Health (Addictions).

Amanda is a reviewer for a number of journals including Drugs: Education Prevention and Policy, Addiction Research and Theory, International Journal of Drug Policy, Drug and Alcohol Review, BMC Public Health and Journal of Gender Studies. She is a member of the Fawcett Society UK and Merseyside, the BSA Alcohol Study Group, LJMU Uses of the Arts Lab and the LJMU Women in Research Working Group.

She is also a volunteer for the Real Love street team, a group of volunteers who go out weekly to help meet the needs of people who are homeless and living on the streets of Liverpool. She also works with The Period Project, an initiative that provides sanitary items those who need them across Merseyside, and is an artist creating art works informed by her research findings as part of public engagement.

Co-module leader BSci Media and Public Health 5010
Co-module leader MSci Addictions: Policy and Interventions 7011


Art exhibitions (public engagement):

£306, displayed at 'The Periodical Exhibition' (curated by Bee Hughes), LJMU John Lennon Art and Design gallery, as part of the Being Human Festival, November 2018

Gender Dilemmas: negotiating femininity and masculinity in contemporary nightlife. Art exhibition with Q and A, Club Health conference, 24th- 26th May, 2017, Dublin.

Homeless: the human cost of austerity. Road studios, LJMU Avril Robarts Library, Liverpool Central Library, November 2016- April-2018.

Gender Dilemmas: negotiating femininity and masculinity in contemporary nightlife. Art Exhibition. ROAD Studios Liverpool Biennial programme, Carlisle Buildings, Victoria Street, Liverpool, Friday 26th-28th August 2016.

Post-feminist ‘façade’: young women’s negotiation of night life drinking spaces and the hypersexual self. Art Exhibition. ROAD Studios Liverpool Light Night programme, Carlisle Buildings, Victoria Street, Liverpool, Friday 16th May, 2016.

Degrees

University of Manchester, United Kingdom, MRes Crime and Criminal Justice Research
University of Liverpool, United Kingdom, BA Criminology and Sociology
LJMU, United Kingdom, PhD

Highlighted publications

Atkinson AM, Sumnall H, Meadows B. 2021. 'We're in this together': A content analysis of marketing by alcohol brands on Facebook and Instagram during the first UK Lockdown, 2020. International Journal of Drug Policy, 98 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Sumnall H, Atkinson AM, Gage S, Hamilton I, Montgomery C. 2021. Less than human: dehumanisation of people who use heroin Health Education, DOI Publisher Url Public Url

Atkinson AM, Sumnall H. 2020. 'Zombies', 'cannibals',and'super humans': a quantitative and qualitative analysis of UK news media reporting of the cathinone psychostimulants labelled 'monkey dust' Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy, DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Sumnall H, Atkinson AM, Trayner K, Gage S, McAuley A. 2020. Effects of messaging on public support for drug consumption rooms in Scotland, UK International Journal of Drug Policy, 83 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Atkinson AM, McAuley A, Trayner KMA, Sumnall HR. 2019. ‘We are still obsessed by this idea of abstinence’: A critical analysis of UK news media representations of proposals to introduce drug consumption rooms in Glasgow, UK International Journal of Drug Policy, 68 :62-74 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Atkinson AM, Sumnall H. 2017. ‘Isn’t it mostly girls that do pre-drinks really?’ Young men and women’s accounts of pre-loading in the UK Drugs: Education, Prevention, and Policy, 26 :60-69 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Atkinson AM, Sumnall HR. 2016. 'If I don't look good, it just doesn't go up': A qualitative study of young women's drinking cultures and practices on Social Network Site. International Journal of Drug Policy, 38 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Atkinson A, Ross-Houle KM, Begley E, Sumnall H. 2016. An exploration of alcohol advertising on social networking sites: an analysis of content, interactions and young people’s perspectives Addiction Research and Theory, 25 :91-102 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Atkinson AM, Sumnall H, Bellis MA. Young people's perspective on the portrayal of alcohol on televison: findings from a focus group study Addiction, Research and Theory, DOI Author Url

Atkinson AM, Kirton AW, Sumnall HR. The gendering of alcohol in consumer magazines: an analysis of male and female targetted publications Journal of Gender Studies, 21 :365-386 DOI Author Url

Atkinson AM, Sumnall H. Neo-liberal discourse of substance use in the UK reality TV show, The Jeremy Kyle Show Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy , DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Journal article

Atkinson AM, Meadows BR, Ross-Houle KM, Smith C, Sumnall HR. 2022. Magazines as contradictory spaces for alcohol messaging: a mixed method content and thematic analysis of UK women’s magazine representations of alcohol and its consumption Drugs: Education, Prevention, and Policy, :1-12 DOI Publisher Url Public Url

Atkinson AM, Meadows BR, Emslie C, Lyons A, Sumnall HR. 2022. 'Pretty in Pink' and ' Girl Power': An analysis of the targeting and representation of women in alcohol brand marketing on Facebook and Instagram International Journal of Drug Policy, 101 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Adley M, Atkinson AM, Sumnall HR. 2022. Including the multiply excluded: a mixed methods study exploring intragroup stigma towards people who use synthetic cannabinoid receptor agonists Drugs: Education, Prevention, and Policy, :1-13 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Boniface S, Atkinson AM, Critchlow N, Jones M, Meadows B, Severi K. 2021. UK alcohol marketing regulation is failing: a new approach is needed to prioritise protection for all Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy, DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Atkinson AM, Sumnall H, Meadows B. 2021. 'We're in this together': A content analysis of marketing by alcohol brands on Facebook and Instagram during the first UK Lockdown, 2020. International Journal of Drug Policy, 98 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Sumnall H, Atkinson AM, Gage S, Hamilton I, Montgomery C. 2021. Less than human: dehumanisation of people who use heroin Health Education, DOI Publisher Url Public Url

Barkoukis V, Kaffe S, Atkinson AM, Sumnall H, Koskelo J, Jussila HK, Jagminiene K, Banyte R. 2021. Fitness professionals’ perceptions of acceptability and usability of anti-doping education tools for recreational sports Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy, DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Sumnall H, Montgomery C, Atkinson AM, Gage S, Boardley I. 2021. Moral disengagement and the harms of cocaine use Drugs: Education, Prevention, and Policy, DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Atkinson AM, Van De Ven K, Cunningham M, de Zeeuw T, Hibbert E, Forlini C, Barkoukis V, Sumnall H. 2021. Performance and image enhancing drug interventions aimed at increasing knowledge among healthcare professionals (HCP): Reflections on the implementation of the Dopinglinkki e-module in the HCP workforce in Europe and Australia International Journal of Drug Policy, DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Harris J, Atkinson AM, Mink M, Porcellato LA. 2020. Young People’s Experiences and Perceptions of YouTuber-Produced Health Content: Implications for Health Promotion Health Education and Behavior, DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Atkinson AM, Sumnall H. 2020. 'Zombies', 'cannibals',and'super humans': a quantitative and qualitative analysis of UK news media reporting of the cathinone psychostimulants labelled 'monkey dust' Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy, DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Sumnall H, Hamilton I, Atkinson AM, Montgomery C, Gage S. 2020. Representation of adverse childhood experiences is associated with lower public stigma towards people who use drugs: an exploratory experimental study Drugs: Education, Prevention, and Policy, 28 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Sumnall H, Atkinson AM, Trayner K, Gage S, McAuley A. 2020. Effects of messaging on public support for drug consumption rooms in Scotland, UK International Journal of Drug Policy, 83 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Trayner K, Palmateer N, Hutchinson S, Goldberg D, Shepherd S, Gunson R, Tweed E, Priyardashi S, Sumnall H, Atkinson AM, McAuley A. 2020. High willingness to use drug consumption rooms among people who inject drugs in Scotland: findings from a national bio-behavioural survey among people who inject drugs International Journal of Drug Policy, 90 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Hearne E, Wazaify M, Van Hout MC, Atkinson AM, McVeigh J. 2020. Anabolic-Androgenic Steroid Use in the Eastern Mediterranean Region: a Scoping Review of Extant Empirical Literature International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction, DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Atkinson AM, McAuley A, Trayner KMA, Sumnall HR. 2019. ‘We are still obsessed by this idea of abstinence’: A critical analysis of UK news media representations of proposals to introduce drug consumption rooms in Glasgow, UK International Journal of Drug Policy, 68 :62-74 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Mensen VT, Vreeker A, Nordgren J, Atkinson A, de la Torre R, Farré M, Ramaekers JG, Brunt TM. 2019. Psychopathological symptoms associated with synthetic cannabinoid use: a comparison with natural cannabis Psychopharmacology, DOI Publisher Url Public Url

Atkinson AM, Sumnall H. 2017. ‘Isn’t it mostly girls that do pre-drinks really?’ Young men and women’s accounts of pre-loading in the UK Drugs: Education, Prevention, and Policy, 26 :60-69 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Brunt TM, Atkinson AM, Nefau T, Martinez M, Lahaie E, Malzcewski A, Pazitny M, Belackova V, Brandt SD. 2017. Online test purchased new psychoactive substances in 5 different European countries; a snapshot study of chemical composition and price International Journal of Drug Policy, 44 :105-114 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Atkinson AM, Sumnall HR. 2016. 'If I don't look good, it just doesn't go up': A qualitative study of young women's drinking cultures and practices on Social Network Site. International Journal of Drug Policy, 38 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Atkinson A, Ross-Houle KM, Begley E, Sumnall H. 2016. An exploration of alcohol advertising on social networking sites: an analysis of content, interactions and young people’s perspectives Addiction Research and Theory, 25 :91-102 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Jones L, Atkinson A, Bates G, McCoy E, Porcellato L, Beynon C, McVeigh J, Bellis MA. 2014. Views and experiences of hepatitis C testing and diagnosis among people who inject drugs: Systematic review of qualitative research International Journal of Drug Policy, 25 :204-211 DOI

Jones L, Hughes K, Atkinson AM, Bellis MA. 2011. Reducing harm in drinking environments: a systematic review of effective approaches. Health Place, 17 :508-518 DOI Author Url

Hughes SK, Hughes K, Atkinson AM, Bellis MA, Smallthwaite L. 2011. Smoking behaviours, access to cigarettes and relationships with alcohol in 15- and 16-year-old schoolchildren. Eur J Public Health, 21 :8-14 DOI Author Url

Montgomery C, Field M, Atkinson AM, Cole JC, Goudie AJ, Sumnall HR. 2010. Effects of alcohol preload on attentional bias towards cocaine-related cues. Psychopharmacology (Berl), 210 :365-375 DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Atkinson AM, Sumnall HR. 2010. Alcohol and Drug Depictions in Magazines Consumed by Young People Sucht Magazine, :23-24

Atkinson AM, Sumnall HR, Measham F. 2010. Depictions of alcohol use in a UK Government partnered online social marketing campaign: Hollyoaks ‘The Morning after the night before’ Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy, :1-14

Atkinson AM, Sumnall H, Bellis MA. Young people's perspective on the portrayal of alcohol on televison: findings from a focus group study Addiction, Research and Theory, DOI Author Url

Atkinson AM, Kirton AW, Sumnall HR. The gendering of alcohol in consumer magazines: an analysis of male and female targetted publications Journal of Gender Studies, 21 :365-386 DOI Author Url

Atkinson AM. Gunby, C. and Atkinson, A.M. (2014). Drinking stories: The importance of gender, narrative and epistemology. International Journal of Drug Policy, 25, 361–362. International Journal of Drug Policy,

Atkinson AM, Sumnall H. Neo-liberal discourse of substance use in the UK reality TV show, The Jeremy Kyle Show Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy , DOI Author Url Publisher Url Public Url

Hearne E, Atkinson AM, Boardley I, McVeigh J, Van Hout MC. ‘Sustaining Masculinity’: A Scoping Review of Anabolic Androgenic Steroid Use by Older Males. Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy, Public Url

Chapters

Sumnall H, Atkinson A. 2021. Prevalence of use of novel psychoactive substances Dargan P, Wood D. Novel Psychoactive Substances: Classification, Pharmacology and Toxicology Academic Press. London, UK 978-0-12-818788-3 DOI Publisher Url

Sumnall H, Atkinson A. 2021. Prevalence of use of novel psychoactive substances Novel Psychoactive Substances: Classification, Pharmacology and Toxicology :85-108 9780128187883 DOI

Ross-Houle KM, atkinson A, SUMNALL H. 2015. The Symbolic Value of Alcohol: The importance of alcohol consumption, drinking practices and drinking spaces in classed and gendered identity construction Thurnall-Read T. Drinking Dilemmas: Space, Culture and Identity :28-44 Routledge. London 978-1-138-93114-5

Research Grants Awarded:

NIHR, AMOUNT: A mixed methods investigation of the individual, sociocultural, and societal factors that underlie the recent increase in substance use among young people to inform policy., Harry Sumnall, Grant value (£): £299,933.00, Duration of research project: 18 months. 2021

Economic and Social Research Council, Principle Investigator-Exploring the extent, nature, creation, impact and regulation of gendered alcohol marketing. June 2020- Dec 2022., Grant value (£): £239,323, Duration of research project: 34. 2020

EMCDDA, Guidance on safer risk communication for drug checking services, Harry Sumnall, Grant value (£): €15,000, Duration of research project: 6 months. 2019

EMCDDA, Health responses to new/novel psychoactive substances., Harry Sumnall, Grant value (£): €8,500, Duration of research project: 6 months. 2019

Institute of Alcohol Research, Principle Investigator. A rapid narrative review of literature on gendered alcohol marketing and its effects: exploring the targeting and representation of women in alcohol marketing. January- June 2019., Grant value (£): £5,000., Duration of research project: 6. 2019

Alcohol Research UK, Co-applicant with Prof Harry Sumnall. Constructing alcohol identities. How young people navigate and make sense of online intoxicogenic marketing and culture, Grant value (£): £58,000, Duration of research project: 18. 2013

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