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Professor Andrew P Smith BSc PhD FBPsP CPsychol FRSM

Professor Andrew P Smith


School of Psychology

+44(0)29 2087 4757
Room 1.01, 63 Park Place, Cathays, Cardiff, CF10 3AT
Media commentator


Research summary

My research covers the areas of Occupational and Health Psychology with a  major emphasis on well-being.

Specifically, I have conducted extensive research on the non-auditory effects of noise on cognition and health. In  addition, I conduct research on stress and fatigue in both the workplace and life in general. My interests in health psychology cover two main themes: health-related behaviours (effects of nutrition, caffeine and chewing gum on behaviour)  and minor illnesses (psychosocial risk factors for susceptibility to colds and influenza; effects of upper respiratory tract infections on mood and cognition).


Undergraduate education

University College London, 1970-1973.

Postgraduate education

University College London, 1973-1976.
PhD: “The processing and effects of emotion words”

Journal Editorial Boards

  • Associate Editor, Noise and Health
  • Associate Editor, Current topics in Nutraceutical Research
  • Editorial Board: International Maritime Health
  • Associate Editor, Nutritional Neuroscience.
  • Editorial Board: Behavioral Sciences
  • Associate Editor, Frontiers in Eating Behaviour.
  • Editorial Board, Journal of Clinical and Translational Research


Current Position: Research Professor, School of Psychology, Director of Centre for  Occupational and Health Psychology, Cardiff University – research projects have included: ESRC ROPA, HSE, MCA/HSE/Seafarers International,  Procter & Gamble, Guinness Ltd, Department of Transport, Department of  Health, Gatsby Foundation, Kellogg's, Oakland Innovation and Information Services,  Health & Safety Executive, MCA/HSE, ORAFTI, YAKULT, NESTEC, Admiral  Insurance Services, IOSH, ITF, Wm Wrigley Co., Sixth and Seventh Framework  Programme.

Professor, Director of Health Psychology Research Unit, Department of   Experimental Psychology, University of Bristol, 1993 – 1999 – HSE funded research on occupational stress; Gatsby Foundation-funded research on chronic fatigue syndrome; Industry-funded research on anti-oxidant vitamins and cognition in the elderly; MAFF Link project on food acceptability, mood and cognition; MRC funded project on central noradrenaline and behavioural effects of noise; ESRC ROPA on effects of breakfast and caffeine on mood, working memory and attention; industry-funded projects on behavioural effects of caffeine, tea,   breakfast, snacks and chewing gum; Department of Health funded project on noise,   insomnia and mental health; and industry-funded projects on malaise associated with minor illnesses.

Director, Health Psychology Research Unit, Reader, School of Psychology,   University of Wales College of Cardiff, 1990 – 1993 – HSE funded research on viral illnesses and safety at work; Linbury Trust funded project on chronic fatigue syndrome; AFRC project on effects of meals on mood and cognition;   industry-funded projects on caffeine and behaviour.

Charles Hunnisett Research Fellow, Laboratory of Experimental Psychology,   University of Sussex, 1989 – 1990 - research on chronic fatigue syndrome.

Scientist, Medical Research Council, Perceptual and Cognitive Performance   Unit, University of Sussex, 1982 – 1988 – research on combined effects of occupational stressors, nutrition and behaviour, and the psychology of the common cold.

Research Fellow, Department of Experimental Psychology, University of Oxford,   1976 – 1982 - working with Donald Broadbent on the effects of noise on cognition

Honours and awards

  • Chartered Psychologist (C.Psychol)
  • Fellow of the British Psychological Society (FBPsS)
  • Fellow of Royal Society of Medicine (FRSM).

Professional memberships

  • Royal Society of Medicine
  • British Psychological Society
  • American Psychological Association
  • American Psychological Society
  • UK Society for Behavioural Medicine
  • European Academy of Occupational Health Psychology.

Speaking engagements

Over 30 years experience in dealing with journalists, radio, tv and film producers. Currently uses film media for dissemination.

Committees and reviewing

  • Reviewed over 400 journal articles in the last 20 years
  • Reviewer of over 100 grant applications
  • Reviewer of Professorial candidates
































Research topics and related papers

Non-auditory effects of noise

My research on the effects  of noise started 45 years ago with the late Donald Broadbent. The main areas  that I have been active in are: noise and cognition; noise and health; noise  and accidents; combined effects of noise and other occupational health hazards;  and noise and mental health (see publications). I have been Chair of the Noise  and performance team of the International Commission for the Biological Effects  of Noise (ICBEN) and an expert on the Department of Health/Health protection  Agency Noise Group. 

Occupational stress and fatigue

This research has been  supported by the Health & Safety Executive, IOSH, the Maritime and  Coastguard Agency and the EU. It has involved studies of the scale of  occupational stress; seafarers fatigue; effects of drugs and medication in the  workplace; stress in ethnic minorities; safety culture; and what makes a good  job. Previous projects have been concerned with well-being at work and health and  safety in the maritime industry

The Psychology of the Common Cold and other infections

This research has examined two areas. The first has been concerned with  psychosocial risk factors (e.g. stress) for infection and illness. The second  has examined the behavioural malaise (negative mood, impaired cognition)  associated with upper respiratory tract illnesses. This research has involved  both laboratory studies and simulations of real-life activities (e.g. driving).  Surveys have also investigated occupational risk factors for minor illnesses  and the effects of such illnesses on productivity and safety. Combined effects  of minor illnesses and other stressors have been examined. Pharmacological  studies have also examined the neurotransmitter changes that underlie malaise.

Functional disorders

Initial studies of post-viral fatigue  have led to extensive research in chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). Again, a  major interest has been the cognitive impairments associated with CFS. The role  of psychosocial factors in the pathogenesis of the disorder has also been investigated.  Previous research has evaluated multi-convergent therapy and shown that it can  have benefits for those with CFS. 

Nutritional Neuroscience

While conducting research on mood  and performance at different times of day I became interested in the  behavioural effects of meals. Similarly, I became interested in the beneficial  effects of caffeine in low alertness situations (e.g. working at night). The  research has been extended to examine behavioural effects of macro-nutrients,  micro-nutrients and pre-and pro-biotics. Current interests include effects of  chewing gum on stress, mood and cognitive function. We have also developed  methods of investigating effects of diet on well-being. These have been used to  examine high fibre diets and effects of fruit/vegetable consumption.


  • Sixth Framework Programme. European Framework for safe, efficient and  environmentally-friendly ship operations (FLAGSHIP). 10,215,000 euros.
  • IOSH. The relationship between work/working and improved health, safety and  well-being. £106,944.
    Seventh Framework Programme. European Noise Network (ENNAH) 993,852 euros.
  • KESS studentship with Connect Assist. Researching and developing mental  health and wellbeing assessment tools for supporting employees and employers in  Wales. £99,804.
  • CASCADE: Model-based co-operative and   adaptive ship based context aware design. FP7-SST-2012-RTD-1. 4,380,346  euros.
  • TENOVUS: Feasibility of a behavioural intervention designed to reduce fatigue during radiotherapy for breast cancer. £29,400. 2016-18.
  • Wellcome Trust: Humanities collaborative awards. Using qualitative analysis of patients’ blogs to inform development of automated measurement of self-care with text mining and sentiment analysis. Button, Smith, Spasic & Holt. £22,328. 2016.
  • Anonymous benefactor: An investigation of the behavioural effects of consuming an energy drink. £118,000. 2015-18.
  • ESRC Impact Accelerator Account/Secondment: Working Well. £33,630. 2016-17
  • RNLI: The effects of fatigue on RNLI search and rescue operators. £44,908 2016-7.
  • KESS2 Studentship (with Orangebox): Work space use, wellbeing, productivity and happiness. £64,000. 2017-2019.

Research group

Well-being   Connect

Research collaborators

Current collaborators in Cardiff include:

  • Professor Keith Whitfied (Business School)
  • Professor Irena Spasic (Computer Science)
  • Dr Kate Button (Healthcare)
  • Dr Nick Courtier (Healthcare)
  • Professor Rob Honey (Psychology)
  • Philip Butler (Psychology)

Collaborators outside the UK include:

  • Professor Jaroslav Flegr (Prague)
  • Dr F Vallone (University of Naples)
  • Dr R Capasso (University of Naples)
  • Thomas Jelley (Sodexo)
  • Dr Sarb Johal (Massey University)
  • Dr Jialin Fan (Szechen University, China)
  • Dr Norshaffika Zaiedy Nor (University of Malaysia)
  • Dr Hasah Alheneidi (Kuwait University)
  • Dr Kenisha Nelson (Jamaica Technical university)
  • Professor Graham Pawelec (University of Tuebingen)
  • Farhad Azimi (Iran)
  • Dr Andrew Allen (Trinity College, Dublin)


Postgraduate research students

Current Students

Eman Alharbi Wellbeing of international students. Self-funded.

Omolaso Omosehin A cross-cultural study of the wellbeing of nurses. Self-funded.

Jennifer Langer Work space use, wellbeing, productivity and happiness. KESS2  (with Orangebox).

Louise Bowen Behavioural aspects of safer transport. ESRC.

Past projects

M.I. Ahmad (deceased). Individual and organisational factors and wellbeing at work. Funded by National University of Malaysia.

K.Webb. Common mental health problems. School of  Psychology.

G.Williams. Researching and developing mental health and wellbeing  assessment tools for supporting employees and employers in Wales. KESS studentship  with Connect Assist.

J. Berrill. Functional abdominal symptoms in patients with inflammatory  bowel disease. Joint with Medicine and Pharmacology.

J. Galvin. Stress in clinical psychologists. School of Psychology, Cardiff  University.

G.Richards. Junk food, energy drinks, attainment and behaviour. Waterloo  Foundation/School of Psychology.

J.Fonberg. Factors influencing well-being. Self-funded.

K. Nelson. Stress in the Jamaican police force. Commonwealth Studentship.

S. Hall Behavioural effects of acute and chronic viral illnesses.  Funded by MRC.  PhD awarded 1993.

R. Flynn (deceased) Psychosocial models of well-being. Funded by MRC. PhD awarded 1993.

M. Savory Naturally-occurring colds and influenza: studies of performance efficiency. MPhil awarded 1991.

A. Maben The effect of low doses of caffeine, sugar and aspartame on human physiology, mood and performance. MPhil awarded 1992.

S. Johal Stress, health and the influence of psychosocial factors. Funded by MRC. PhD awarded 1995.

E. Dafeeah Psychosocial factors and health. Funded by Sudanese government. PhD awarded 1996.

I. Ertoren Cross cultural studies of stress. Funded by Turkish government. PhD awarded 1997.

P. Patel Stress and health-related behaviours. Funded by U. Bristol. PhD awarded 1998.

F. Khan Stress and allergy. Funded by industry. PhD awarded 1998.

C. Brice Caffeine consumption and the role of central noradrenaline. Funded by ESRC. PhD awarded 1999.

S. Hayward Evaluation of stress management. Funded by U.Bristol. PhD awarded 1999.

E. O’Connor Heat and performance. Funded by D.E.R.A. PhD awarded 1999.

S. Hewlett Values and personal impact in arthritis. Funded by Arthritis and Rheumatism Research Council. PhD awarded 2000.

D. Nguyen-van-Tam Caffeine and memory. Funded by ESRC. PhD awarded 2002.

B. Wellens Combined effects of Occupational Stress. Funded by HSE. PhD awarded 2004.

S. Sivell Combined effects of Occupational Health Hazards. Funded by HSE. MPhil awarded 2004.

P. Hewlett Effects of caffeine and macronutrient variation on mood and cognitive performance. Funded by Cardiff University. PhD awarded 2004.

S. Faulkner Part-time PG. Psychosocial factors and herpes viruses. Funded by U.Glamorgan. PhD awarded 2005.

K. Chaplin BBSRC CASE studentship (with Kelloggs). Breakfast cereal, snacks, mood, cognition and health. Awarded 2008.

G. Mark A transactional approach to occupational stress and mental health. Funded by Cardiff University. Awarded 2008.

R. McNamara Combined effects of work hazards. Funded by Cardiff University. Part time. Submission 2008. Awarded 2009.

M.Thomas (by publication) Exploring the beliefs and underlying functional deficits associated with chronic fatigue syndrome and the identification of predictors of recovery and successful illness management. Awarded 2009.

S. Kingdom Stress in the Coastguard. Self-funded, part-time. Awarded 2011.

A. P. Allen Chewing gum and stress. Part funded by Wrigley Science Institute. Awarded 2013.

I. Johnson Oral health and emotion. Joint with Dental School. Awarded 2014.