Profile: Peter Congdon

Peter Congdon, Professor of Quantitative Geography and Health Statistics at Queen Mary, University of London, UK. Peter’s research focuses on quantitative and modelling applications and he has wide research experience in spatial epidemiology, urban health, health services research, and regional demography. His substantive interests include spatial epidemiology, psychiatric and suicide epidemiology, and prevalence of chronic disease.

Peter Congdon qualified in statistics at London School of Economics (BSc Econ, 1973; MSc, 1974) and earned a PhD, also at LSE, in social statistics in 1984. After his earlier career spent in demographic research, he joined the Geography Department at QMUL in 1992. He advanced to Research professor in 2001. He has participated in a range of funded research projects on estimating and mapping small area disease prevalence; on contextual variations and trends in locality mortality; and on psychiatric care in the UK and the USA. He has conducted a Department of Health-funded study of psychiatric referrals in East London and a Kings Fund project on health and social care indicators for the elderly. He is perhaps best known for his ground-breaking work on applied statistical techniques, particularly the applied use of Bayesian modelling in health and the social sciences. The second edition of his book, Bayesian Statistical Modelling, was published by John Wiley in 2006.

Peter is currently working on three major research projects:

1) Prevalence estimation for micro areas in the US (Zip Code Tabulation Areas) in collaboration with the National Minority Quality Forum; the focus so far is on diabetes, cardiovascular conditions, and obesity. Information on Z-Atlas (Health Information about the US Population) at

2) Prevalence estimation for health areas in England, namely wards, super output areas and Primary Care Trusts; in collaboration with Association of Public Health Observatories. Focus is prevalence of psychiatric illness, CHD, and diabetes.

3) Mapping and analysing health need in London in collaboration with the four Primary Care Trusts in outer NE London, including demand for healthcare, and spatial inequality in chromic illness. This work has a small area and micro area focus (electoral ward and super output area scales) as well as a focus on indicators for GP practices.

Peter may be contacted at

Updated: May 2009