Soo Downe, BA (hons), RM, MSc, PhD, spent 15 years working as a midwife in various clinical, research and project development roles at Derby City General Hospital. In 2001, she joined the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) in England, where she is now the Professor of Midwifery Studies. She set up the UCLan Midwifery Studies Research Unit in October 2002. She now leads the Research in Childbirth and Health (ReaCH) group. She has chaired both the UK Royal College of Midwives Campaign for Normal Birth steering committee, and the ICM Research Standing Committee. She has been a member of a number of national midwifery committees, and has collaborated with the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) on two projects to date. She is a member of the steering group of the Global Alliance of Nursing and Midwifery.