Katie Jones


Health & Wellbeing (2020 cohort)

I am passionate about improving the experiences of families during the critical period from the conception of pregnancy to the infant's second birthday through research and increasing public awareness of perinatal wellbeing. My doctoral research includes a systematic review, a single-point-in-time mixed-methods online survey, and a longitudinal mixed-methods online survey to develop a comprehensive picture of postnatal anxiety risk factors and triggers during the twelve months following childbirth. The project is guided by stakeholders and 'experts by experience' who contribute to every stage of the research design, recruitment, analysis, and dissemination. Combined findings aim to inform future preventative and supportive intervention programmes aimed at reducing the prevalence, severity, and long-term implications of postnatal anxiety on family wellbeing. Beyond my PhD, I collaborate with researchers within and beyond the Open University to investigate maternal wellbeing and I have recently published work focused on perinatal mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Prior to being awarded an ESRC studentship with the Grand Union Doctoral Training Partnership (DTP), I completed a Postgraduate Certificate in Family and Child Psychology at the University of Chester, and a BSc (First class honours) in Psychology with the Open University. I gained experience as a Research Assistant for the Behavioural Insights Team (a social purpose company connected to the UK Cabinet Office) and continue to work on short contracts as a Research Associate in the School of Psychology and Counselling at the Open University. I co-chaired the Grand Union DTP Scholars Association in 2020/1 and am a core member of the Society for Reproductive and Infant Psychology’s Early Career Researcher (ECR) group, organising their monthly peer support/social meetings, running their ECR social media account, and assisting with the delivery of their ECR workshops. Outside of academia I work with my local Maternity Voices Partnership to support the continuous improvement of local maternity services. I am committed to placing ‘experts by experience’ at the centre of my research and have recently led Patient and Public Involvement on a research grant application which involved collaborating with NHS stakeholders and service users in multiple regions across the UK. My work within and beyond academia led to me being shortlisted for a Research Excellence Award at the Open University. Final results are due in September 2022.


Harrison, V., Moulds, M. L., & Jones, K. (2021). Perceived social support and prenatal wellbeing; The mediating effects of loneliness and repetitive negative thinking on anxiety and depression during the COVID-19 pandemic. Women and Birth. doi.org/10.1016/j.wombi.2020.12.014

Harrison, V., Moulds, M., & Jones, K. (2021). Support from Friends Moderates the Relationship between Repetitive Negative Thinking and Postnatal Wellbeing during COVID-19. Journal of reproductive and infant psychology. doi.org/10.1080/02646838.2021.1886260

Jones, K. (2022). “This was not what I envisioned new motherhood to be like”, In Narratives of COVID: loss, dying, death and grief during COVID-19.

Jones, K., Harrison, V., Moulds, M.L. et al. A qualitative analysis of feelings and experiences associated with perinatal distress during the COVID-19 pandemic. BMC Pregnancy Childbirth 22, 572 (2022). doi.org/10.1186/s12884-022-04876-9

Moulds, M. L., Bisby, M. A., Black, M. J., Jones, K., Harrison, V., Hirsch, C. R., and Newby, J. M. (2022). Repetitive negative thinking in the perinatal period and its relationship with anxiety and depression. Journal of Affective Disorders. doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2022.05.070