Gillian Shorter is currently a reader in Psychology in the Institute of Mental Health Sciences at Ulster University and has been a researcher in the alcohol and drug use field for over 15 years.

Her work on change in substance use includes alcohol brief interventions, hazardous drinking and patterns of consumption, long-term alcohol problems, polydrug use, and harm reduction initiatives. She works to involve experts by experience in policymaking and is a firm believer in the key role of people with lived experience in driving timely, empowering, and appropriate policy change. She also works to understand the complex interplay of evidence production and use (including effectiveness/efficacy studies and systematic reviews) and public opinion on policy. Gillian has expertise in cross border policy making and the sharing of best practice across country boundaries.

Since 2014, Gillian has been the research advisor to the New Strategic Direction in Alcohol and Drugs Policy Steering Group in the Department of Health (Stormont). She is also a research advisor to the North South Alcohol Policy Advisory Group convened by the two Chief Medical Officers in Northern Ireland/Republic of Ireland and led by the Institute of Public Health in Ireland to facilitate alcohol policy at an all-Ireland level.

Gillian chairs the IAS Small Grants Scheme Research Review Committee.