Dr Gillian Harris – Clinical Psychologist
Dr Gillian Harris (BA, MSc, PhD, CertEd, AFBPsS, C.Psychol) has carried out research into infant and child feeding behaviour and appetite regulation at the University of Birmingham, School of Psychology for the past 30 years. She was also a Consultant Paediatric Clinical Psychologist for 27 years, and led a feeding clinic at The Children’s Hospital, Birmingham, where she worked with infants and children who were food-averse.
Her research and clinical interest is in the development of food acceptance and rejection in infancy and early childhood, and the effect of early experience on later food preferences. She has written around 100 published papers, articles and book chapters on these areas, and been awarded multiple research grants to support her research. She continues with her research at the University of Birmingham.
She has also frequently run, or contributed to, workshops or study days for health professionals, both nationally and internationally, in which her research findings are disseminated. Her publications, and invited talks, have led to changes nationally, in the assessment and treatment of children with eating problems, and in weaning practices generally.
Dr Harris continues to specialise in research and interventions with children who are food averse and have very restricted diets; help for these children is given by training workshops or therapy via the Birmingham Food Refusal Service (www.foodrefusal.co.uk ) which she runs with colleague Dr Elizabeth Shea.
She is also a member of the Infant and Toddler Forum, a website devoted to giving evidence-based guidance to both health professionals and parents; her factsheets on food acceptance and refusal remain extremely popular (www.infantandtoddlerforum.org).
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