Ewan is Head of the Healthy Working Lives Group in the Institute of Health and Wellbeing of the University of Glasgow and Director of Salus in NHS Lanarkshire. He trained in occupational medicine in the coal mining industry and has since led services in industrial sectors as diverse as computing , textiles, aluminium production and health care. He proposed the Healthy Working Lives paradigm which was adopted by Scottish Government and was responsible for stimulating its review which led to the more recent Health Works policy. He currently chairs the implementation group of the first pilot of a redesign of musculo-skeletal services in the NHS aimed at ensuring more patient centred and faster care with a focus on return to maximum function including work where appropriate. His research has evolved from a focus on the health problems caused by work to the health problems caused by worklessness and he believes that worklessness rather than disease is the major cause of morbidity and mortality , health inequalities and social exclusion in Scotland. He established with others, the Scottish Observatory for Work and Health which is based in his group at the University.