Ruth Parry

Professor of Human Communication and Interaction

I am an Excellence 100 Professor of Human Communication and Interaction, and I hold a National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Fellowship.

I lead a team of four post-doctorates (all women) and a specialist nurse. Two of the postdocs work part-time whilst also home-schooling their young families. We work and communicate flexibly, and expect the unexpected given our parenting roles! We all work on video and audio-based research and training on the dilemmas and practices involved in sensitive and effective healthcare communication – mostly in palliative and end of life care settings.

I also work part-time as I was widowed about 18 months ago and am single parenting my two teenagers. Outside of work I enjoy Derbyshire and Lake District walking, contemporary art galleries and cooking. Given my personal and professional expertise, I have supported several friends and relatives as they or their loved ones move towards the end of life. I have developed a good deal of knowledge of what to do, say and advise which can be very fulfilling.

International Women’s Day is a reminder to notice how fortunate I am to live in a country where I have experienced little or no gender-related barriers to studying to PhD level, becoming a scientist and a professor, and to living my family life as I think best for me and my kids. It is also a reminder to be aware of things that are still unequal for women, and to do what I can to raise awareness and make a change.