Michael Marmot

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Sir Michael Marmot

Michael Marmot.jpg
Michael Gideon Marmot

(1945-01-26) 26 January 1945 (age 77)[1]
London, England
Alma mater
Known for
Spouse(s)Alexandra Naomi Ferster[1]
Scientific career
ThesisAcculturation and Coronary Heart Disease in Japanese-Americans (1975)

Sir Michael Gideon Marmot, FBA, FMedSci, FRCP (born 26 February 1945) is Professor of Epidemiology and Public Health at University College London. He is currently the Director of The UCL Institute of Health Equity.[4] Marmot has led research groups on health inequalities for over thirty years, working for various international and governmental bodies.

Early life and education[edit]

Marmot was born in London on 26 January 1945. When he was a young child, his family moved to Sydney in Australia,[5] where he attended Sydney Boys High School (1957–1961)[6] and graduated with a Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) degree from the University of Sydney in 1968.[citation needed]

He earned a Master of Public Health in 1972[citation needed] and a PhD in 1975 from the University of California, Berkeley for research into acculturation and coronary heart disease in Japanese Americans.[7]


He was a member of the Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution for six years[when?] and in 2000 he was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II, for services to epidemiology and the understanding of health inequalities.

Marmot is the chair of the Commission on Social Determinants of Health set up by the World Health Organization in 2005.

Marmot advises the WHO.[8][when?] Marmot was chair of the Commission on Social Determinants of Health (CSDH)[when?], which was set up by the World Health Organization 2005. In August 2008, he produced, for the commission, a report called Closing the Gap in a Generation.[citation needed]

Marmot gave the Harveian Oration in 2006.

He leads the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing (ELSA), and is engaged in several international research efforts on the social determinants of health. He served as President of the British Medical Association (BMA) from 2010 to 2011,[citation needed] and is the new President of the British Lung Foundation.[when?]

Marmot served as president of the World Medical Association for 2015–16.[citation needed]

Marmot is a vice-president of the Academia Europaea.[when?]


He is a fellow of the Academy of Medical Sciences, an honorary fellow of the British Academy, and an honorary fellow of the Faculty of Public Health of the Royal College of Physicians.

Marmot is a Foreign Associate Member of the Institute of Medicine (IOM), and a former vice-president of the Academia Europaea.

He is a Foreign Associate Member of the Institute of Medicine (IOM).


Marmot conducted ground-breaking studies of heart disease and stroke, comparing Japanese people in Japan (high stroke rates, low heart attack rates) with those in Hawaii and California, where, especially in later generations, the disease patterns became reversed after adopting lifestyle, stress and diet changes.[7] He has more recently led the Whitehall Studies of British civil servants, again focusing on heart disease and other disease patterns. His department includes the MRC National Survey of Health & Development, a longitudinal study directed by Professor Michael Wadsworth of people born in Britain in 1946 and followed up since. There are 120 other academic staff in the department.[9][10][11][12][13]

Marmot has a special interest in inequalities in health[14][15] and their causes, and has been a government advisor in seeking to identify ways to mitigate them. He served on the Scientific Advisory Group of the Independent Inquiry into Inequalities in Health chaired by Sir Donald Acheson, the former UK chief medical officer. This reported in November 1998.[16]

In The Status Syndrome: How your social standing directly affects your health and life expectancy, he argues that socio-economic position is an important determinant for health outcomes. This result holds even if we control for the effects of income, education and risk factors (such as smoking) on health. The causal pathway Marmot identifies concerns the psychic benefits of "being in control" of one's life. Autonomy in this sense is related to our socio-economic position. Based on comparative studies, Marmot argues that we can make our society more participatory and inclusive to increase overall public health.[citation needed]

In 2008, Marmot appeared in Unnatural Causes: Is Inequality Making Us Sick?, an American documentary series examining the social determinants of health that drew heavily from Marmot's work on the Whitehall Studies.

On 6 November 2008, Prime Minister Gordon Brown announced that the Secretary of State for Health Alan Johnson had asked Marmot to chair a review of health inequalities in England; to inform policy making and address health inequalities from 2010.[citation needed] The review was announced at the launch of the Commission on Social Determinants of Health report Closing the Gap in a Generation.[citation needed] The review was published in 2010 entitled Fair society, healthy lives : the Marmot Review.[17]

In 2020, Marmot co-authored Health Equity in England: The Marmot Review 10 Years On.[18] It found that life expectancy is falling among the poorest people and particularly amongst women in certain English regions.[19] Published in the same year, Build Back Fairer: The COVID-19 Marmot Review explored connections between inequality in socioeconomic conditions and COVID-19 death tolls, recommending investing in public health. In 2021, a follow up report looking at Greater Manchester noted a greater fall in life expectancy in the poorer areas of the county.[20][21] It made recommendations around improving living standards, working conditions and increasing prospects for young people.[22]

Selected bibliography[edit]


  • Marmot, Michael (2015). The Health Gap: The Challenge of an Unequal World. Lancet. Vol. 386. Bloomsbury. pp. 2442–4. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(15)00150-6. ISBN 9781408857991. PMID 26364261. S2CID 27066898.
  • Marmot, Michael (2015). The Status Syndrome: How Social Standing Affects Our Health and Longevity. Bloomsbury. ISBN 9781408872680.
  • Marmot, Michael; Wilkinson, Richard G. (2006) [1999]. Social Determinants of Health (2nd ed.). Oxford/New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780198565895.
  • Marmot, Michael; Siegrist, Johannes (2006). Social Inequalities in Health: new evidence and policy implications. Oxford/New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780198568162.
  • Marmot, Michael (2004). The Status Syndrome: How Social Standing Affects Our Health and Longevity. New York: Times Books. ISBN 9780805073706.
  • Marmot, Michael; Wilkinson, Richard G. (2003). The Solid Facts. Copenhagen: World Health Organization, Regional Office for Europe. ISBN 9780585492520.

Journal articles and research[edit]

  • Marmot, M (2021) Build Back Fairer in Greater Manchester[20]
  • Marmot, M (2020) et al. Health Equity in England: The Marmot Review 10 Years On[18]
  • Marmot, M (2010). Fair society, healthy lives : the Marmot review ; strategic review of health inequalities in England post-2010[17]
  • Marmot, M (2008). "Michael Marmot on eliminating social injustice". The Health Service Journal: 15. PMID 19018626.

Awards and honours[edit]

  • 2016 Awarded an honorary doctorate by the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU).[23]
  • 2015 C.-E. A. Winslow Medal, Yale
  • 2012 Lifetime Award Fellowship Eur Academy of Occupational Health Psychology
  • 2012 Patron of Medsin-UK
  • 2012 European Academy of Occupational Health Psychology Fellowship
  • 2011 Ambuj Nath Bose Prize, Royal College of Physicians
  • 2011 Medal of City of Lima, awarded by Mayor of Lima
  • 2011 Sir Liam Donaldson Lecture and Medal, Health Protection Agency
  • 2011 Fellow, Association for Psychological Medicine
  • 2011 Avedis Donabedian International Foundation Award
  • 2010 Manchester Doubleday Award, Manchester School of Medicine
  • 2010 Jenner Medal, Royal Society of Medicine
  • 2010–11 President, British Medical Association
  • 2008 Tore Andersson Award in Epidemiological Research, Karolinska Institutet,
  • 2008 William B. Graham Prize for Health Services Research[24]
  • 2007 Centre for Disease Control (CDC) Foundation Hero Award
  • 2006 Winner BMA Book Awards 2006 (Public Health)
  • 2006 Harveian Oration, Royal College of Physicians
  • 2004 Balzan Prize for Epidemiology[citation needed]
  • 2004 Alwyn Smith Prize Medal for distinguished service to public health, Faculty of Public Health
  • 2004 Bisset Hawkins Medal, Royal College of Physicians
  • 2003 Visiting Fellow Commoner, Trinity College, Cambridge
  • 2002 Decade of Behaviour Distinguished Speaker, Gerontological Society of America
  • 2002 Patricia B Barchas Award, American Psychosomatic Society


  1. ^ a b "Marmot, Prof. Sir Michael (Gideon)". Who's Who 2014, A & C Black, an imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing plc, 2014; online edn, Oxford University Press.(subscription required)
  2. ^ "Michael Marmot". instituteofhealthequity.org. Archived from the original on 18 May 2016. Retrieved 10 August 2015.
  3. ^ "Whitehall II". www.ucl.ac.uk.
  4. ^ About page on the Institute of Health Equity website
  5. ^ Michael Marmot interviewed by Kirsty Young on BBC Desert Island Discs 6 July 2014
  6. ^ Profile, shsobu.org.au. Retrieved 31 January 2016.
  7. ^ a b Marmot, Michael Gideon (1975). Acculturation and Coronary Heart Disease in Japanese-Americans (PhD thesis). University of California, Berkeley. ProQuest 302770471.
  8. ^ Rise in life expectancy has stalled since 2010, research shows The Guardian
  9. ^ Marmot, M.G.; Smith, G.D.; Stansfeld, S; Patel, C; North, F; Head, J; White, I; Brunner, E; Feeney, A (1991). "Health inequalities among British civil servants: The Whitehall II study". Lancet. 337 (8754): 1387–93. doi:10.1016/0140-6736(91)93068-k. PMID 1674771. S2CID 2791924.
  10. ^ "Intersalt: An international study of electrolyte excretion and blood pressure. Results for 24 hour urinary sodium and potassium excretion. Intersalt Cooperative Research Group". BMJ (Clinical Research Ed.). 297 (6644): 319–28. 1988. doi:10.1136/bmj.297.6644.319. PMC 1834069. PMID 3416162.
  11. ^ McKeigue, P.M.; Shah, B; Marmot, M.G. (1991). "Relation of central obesity and insulin resistance with high diabetes prevalence and cardiovascular risk in South Asians". Lancet. 337 (8738): 382–86. doi:10.1016/0140-6736(91)91164-p. PMID 1671422. S2CID 21350831.
  12. ^ Hemingway, H; Marmot, M (1999). "Evidence based cardiology: Psychosocial factors in the aetiology and prognosis of coronary heart disease. Systematic review of prospective cohort studies". BMJ (Clinical Research Ed.). 318 (7196): 1460–67. doi:10.1136/bmj.318.7196.1460. PMC 1115843. PMID 10346775.
  13. ^ Marmot, MG (1997). "Contribution of job control and other risk factors to social variations in coronary heart disease incidence". The Lancet. 350 (9073): 235–39. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(97)04244-X. PMID 9242799. S2CID 5665244.
  14. ^ Torjesen, I (2014). "Low paid workers are not paid enough to live healthily, Marmot says". BMJ (Clinical Research Ed.). 348: g1939. doi:10.1136/bmj.g1939. PMID 24594545. S2CID 27705220.
  15. ^ Boseley, S (2008). "Michael Marmot: Leader in the social determinants of health". The Lancet. 372 (9650): 1625. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(08)61675-X. PMID 18994652. S2CID 13557445.
  16. ^ "Independent Inquiry into Inequalities in Health Report" (PDF). www.gov.uk. Retrieved 30 May 2019.
  17. ^ a b "Fair society, healthy lives : the Marmot Review : strategic review of health inequalities in England post-2010". GOV.UK. Retrieved 30 June 2021.
  18. ^ a b "Health Equity in England: The Marmot Review 10 Years On | The Health Foundation". www.health.org.uk. Retrieved 30 June 2021.
  19. ^ Boseley, Sarah (25 February 2020). "Austerity blamed for life expectancy stalling for first time in century". The Guardian. Retrieved 25 February 2020.
  20. ^ a b Marmot, Michael (2021). "Build Back Fairer in Greater Manchester - Main Report".{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  21. ^ "'Jaw-dropping' fall in life expectancy in poor areas of England, report finds". The Guardian. 30 June 2021. Retrieved 30 June 2021.
  22. ^ "Michael Marmot and Jessica Allen: Building back fairer in Greater Manchester". The BMJ. 30 June 2021. Retrieved 30 June 2021.
  23. ^ Fossen, Christian. "Honorary Doctors". www.ntnu.edu.
  24. ^ "New Years Honours List". The London Gazette. 55710: 2. 30 December 1999.

External links[edit]

Media related to Michael Marmot at Wikimedia Commons