Professor Chris Nester is a UK podiatrist by first degree and leads foot and ankle research in the School of Health & Society (University of Salford, UK). Chris has published over 145 journals papers, had 21 PhD students complete their studies, and secured over £10 million to support his research. He has led projects with colleagues in the USA, China, Australia and across Europe.
His research focus continues to be how foot structure and function affect foot health and how treatments including footwear and orthotic insoles can be optimised. However, whilst clinical biomechanics remains a key strength of his research, he has an increasing interest in qualitative research methods and in public health, social science and digital research. This reflects his open minded approach to sourcing the right research strategy for each new research challenge.
Previous EU projects have focused on the design of footwear, foot orthoses and medical devices. Related sponsorship has come from the UK government via the Technology Strategy Board (now INNOVATE UK), NHS innovation funds and direct industry sponsorship. Chris has been involved in six “Knowledge Transfer Partnerships” to date and worked with local and global business in the foot health sector (e.g. Scholl and Clark’s). Working with industry and other stakeholders is a hallmark of his career. Chris was also involved in Salfordinsole, a University spin off company researching, designing and producing foot orthoses in the UK.
In 2016 Chris and Dr Stewart Morrison (University of Brighton) launched the GREAT FOUNDATIONS initiative, promoting a better understanding of children’s feet and foot health. This was supported by £1.5 million from the William M Scholl Endowment Trust.
In 2018 Chris led a “Priority Setting Partnership” with the James Lind Alliance, seeking to establish the top ten national foot health research priorities. The results are here.