Scottish Migrant and Ethnic Health Research Strategy group

The Scottish Migrant and Ethnic Health Research Strategy (SMEHRS) group, formerly the Scottish Health and Ethnicity Research Strategy Steering (SHERSS) group, is a multi-disciplinary and multi-agency group with members drawn from the Scottish Government, the NHS, academia and relevant third sector organisations.

It was set up in 2010 as recommended by the Health in our Multi-ethnic Scotland - Future Research Priorities 2009 report, with the aim of helping to implement the priorities and recommendations of the report. Its wider purpose is to encourage and promote high quality research that will help to improve the health and wellbeing of all ethnic groups living in Scotland.



  1. To assist in implementing the priorities and recommendations of “Health in our Multi-ethnic Scotland - Future Research Priorities”. The group will also address the interface with closely related issues arising from religion and migration in Scotland.
  2. To keep under review and revise where appropriate the above priorities and recommendations in the light of changing circumstances and experience.
  3. To report annually to the Scottish Government on progress against these priorities and recommendations and on other strategic issues relevant to research on ethnicity and health in Scotland.
  4. To provide a strategic focus for researchers working in this field in Scotland.
  5. To maintain and promote awareness of current research and research-related issues relevant to health and ethnicity through the annual report and by other means.


Find out more about the group

Download the ´╗┐SMEHRS group´s

View minutes from the SMEHRS group's meetings.

Download a summary of recent and current research about health and ethnicity in Scotland.

Find details of the SMEHRS group´s members.

Migrant terms and definitions: This paper aims to frame and define terms currently used in the UK in relation to the different forms of status of people who have migrated to the UK. It does not make any judgement about the appropriateness or inappropriateness of these terms, nor does it recommend that any particular terms should or should not be used. However, it does emphasise the importance of paying careful attention to the way words are used and understood in this sensitive area. 


Migrant and ethnic health research conferences

The group delivered its first national conference - Ethnicity and Health Research: Helping to make a Fairer, Healthier Scotland - on Wednesday 21 November, 2012.

The one day conference for researchers, policy makers, practitioners and the general public presented and discussed recent advances in research aimed at improving health and wellbeing, and reducing health inequalities. View the conference programme and presentations

You can also view a presentation about SHERSS given at the EUPHA Migrant and Ethnic Health Conference in Granada, Spain, April 2014 by Drew Millard.

The second SMEHRS conference, entitled 'Helping to make a Fairer, Healthier Scotland', took place on the 24 September. The programme and presentations are all available to view. 


Updated 23/03/2016

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