Meet Our Team
PEDAL's team members come from a range of backgrounds including psychology, education, medicine, and speech and language therapy. We're linked together by our drive to discover how we can use play to spark change in families, schools, and communities.
Beth is a Research Associate at PEDAL. She's interested in supporting babies, toddlers, and families in the first years of life, translating research to real-world impacts, and promoting children's own voices in research.
Stephen is a Research Associate with PEDAL and an Associate Member of the REAL Centre, University of Cambridge. His research focuses on education for adaptability and how children in low-income settings develop skills like creativity and problem solving.
Julia is a Research Associate, currently working with Prof Sara Baker as part of the Play in Schools team.
Brittney is a Research Associate currently working on the Healthy Start, Happy Start follow-up study and the PlayBack study within PEDAL.
Christine is a UKRI Future Leaders Fellow and Senior Research Associate at PEDAL. She's developing ways to widen access to early, effective support for families to help babies and toddlers enjoy healthy and happy lives.
Jenny is a Senior Lecturer in Psychology and Education. Her research focuses on investigating the role of play in children’s social development, and examining how play can be measured.
Sally is PEDAL’s Senior Policy Fellow. She works with the team to find ways for our knowledge and research to inform public policy, in order to improve children’s lives.
Zaheema is a Research Assistant working on the Healthy Start, Happy Start follow up study within PEDAL.
Muhammad Aliff Aiman Kamarudin
Aiman is a Research Assistant, currently exploring the ways play and booksharing can support families in children's earliest years.
Katie is a Research Assistant working on the Healthy Start, Happy Start follow up study within PEDAL.
Laura is a Research Associate working on the Healthy Start, Happy Start follow-up study within PEDAL.
Sophie is a Research Associate at PEDAL. Sophie has a passion for improving the health and development of children and reducing health inequalities from the earliest years, primarily through movement behaviour (encompassing physical activity, play, sedentary behaviour, and sleep).
Paul is LEGO Professor of Play in Education, Development and Learning, and the Director of the PEDAL Centre.
Eloise is a Research Associate and Child Therapist, currently developing and testing a virtual book sharing programme for parents of young children to promote language development and support parent-child relationships.
Pablo Torres Núñez
Pablo is a British Academic Postdoctoral Fellow and Principal Investigator on a project examining the impact of culturally effective teaching on developing self-regulation.
Sabilah Eboo Alwani
Sabilah is a 3rd year PhD student at PEDAL, researching how parents have supported children's early learning during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Sydney is a PhD student researching play therapists' experiences and perceptions of children's wellbeing during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Chika is a PhD student researching how the integration of neuroscience, cognition, child development and education can improve the experience of children in low-income contexts.
Dina is a 3rd year PhD student exploring Mexican teachers' perspectives on using playful learning in their practice, particularly in urban and rural preschools.
Kelsey is a 4th year PhD student researching the role of play in healthcare, specifically for children with chronic or severe illness.
Morgan is a 2nd year PhD student and Gates Scholar. Her research is exploring how family home visiting programmes can support children's development.
Tilly is a 2nd year PhD student researching the ways play and booksharing can support families in children's earliest years. She's also a Research Assistant for the Centre.
Carolyn is a PhD student examining play and classroom talk, and how these are related to children's cognitive development.
Stephanie is a 3rd year PhD student researching autistic children’s experiences of playful interventions in South Africa.
Domnick is a 3rd year PhD student researching the use of play-based pedagogies in early childhood education.
Paulina Pérez-Duarte Mendiola
Paulina is a 2nd year PhD student exploring how children behave before, during and after they interact with Hospital Play Specialists and what children think of these interactions.
Emma is a 3rd year PhD student funded by the LEGO Foundation and Cambridge Trust, undertaking research relating to autistic play and strengths-based autism diagnostic assessment.
Yanwen is a 2nd year PhD student, investigating the relationship between pretend play and counterfactual reasoning from a temporal perspective.
Find out more about previous PEDAL members and what they are up to now.
Emily has recently completed her PhD, exploring how children communicate with their peers during play and how this communication may be related to their characteristics.
Krishna has recently completed her PhD, researching parent-child playfulness and its importance in child outcomes.
Vicky Yiran Zhao
Vicky has recently completed her PhD, looking at the relationship between communication disorders and psychosocial adversities, and how play can be an effective intervention to promote children’s social and emotional skills.
Access further information about who we are, where we are and what we do.