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Department of Social Work, Care and Justice

Research

All members of the Department are actively involved in research and this informs teaching on all our courses.

Our research activity can be grouped into four broad areas. 'International social work', the theory and practice of radical social work, key aspects of work with children, young people and children’s rights, and crime, deviance and the media.

Staff are at the forefront of debates taking place within the University and policy sectors over key issues and questions that affect our daily lives – both as academics (students and staff) and as members of society.

We believe it is important for our students to engage in research and for us all to establish a culture of exploration and critical understanding of the modern world and its problems.

We have regular research seminars and research days where staff and students both actively engage with important research questions, where outside speakers bring different views and perspectives to bear and where students benefit from high quality presentations from leading academics in the field.

 

Research Excellence Framework 2014

In the latest national assessment of research (REF 2014) the Department did particularly well. 73.3% of the staff outputs that were entered were ranked as either 3* or 4* meaning they were regarded as 'internationally excellent' or 'world leading'. This means the Department was ranked 12th in the UK for research outputs in this subject area.

PhD Areas

NameAreas of expertise for PhD supervision
Michael Lavalette

Professor Michael Lavalette has expertise of supporting and supervising PhD students in a number of areas. He would be particularly interested in students looking to research in any of the following broad areas:

Social work: the history of social work, radical social work, international social work

Children's rights: child labour, school student strikes and political engagement

Social movements and episodes of collective action.

Rich Moth

Rich is interested in supervising research on the following topics:

Mental health social work, models of mental distress, mental health policy, social movements and mental health

Kellie Thompson

Kellie is interested in supervising research on the following topics:

Child and Family social work; ethnographic research located in children’s services; professional practice(s) in child welfare settings, including multi-agency working and information practices, safeguarding in adolescence

Steven Lucas

Steven is interested in supervising research on the following topics:

 

  • Early Intervention with Children and Families 
  • Children and Childhoods 
  • Qualitative Methodologies
  • Social Work and Service Users Voices and perspectives
  • Social Work Knowledge
  • The social construction of practice in social work

 

David Merryweather

Dr Merryweather would welcome enquiries from students considering undertaking a PhD on the following topics:

  • Youth-to-adult transitions (especially for socially excluded/marginalised young people); 
  • Young people, risk and identity.

 

Daniela Mangione

Daniela is interested in supervising research on the following topics:

Children’s rights; participatory research; teaching and learning; forest school and outdoor spaces for children and young people; drama

Helen Ashworth

Helen is interested in supervising research on the following topics:

Representation of youth and older age; intergenerational interaction; ageing and discrimination; gender and age. 

Emma Katz

Dr Katz welcomes enquiries from people seeking a supervisor for a PhD on domestic violence and abuse.

Dr Katz has expertise on domestic abuse and:

 

  • children’s agency
  • coercive control
  • mother-child relationships
  • children’s recoveries
She would be particularly interested in supervising on projects that use qualitative methods and/or are interested in gathering data with children and young people.

 

Delyth Edwards

Delyth is available to supervise PhD and Masters projects in fields related to interests and expertise in:

 

  • Care experience and identity
  • Sociology of the everyday
  • Cultural sociology
  • Cultural Participation (young people, care experienced)
  • Qualitative methodologies (biographical research, ethnography)

 

Steven Corbett

Steven welcomes PhD proposals within social policy and political sociology, in particular those that are related to any of the following broad topics:

  • Democratic participation and citizenship
  • Alternatives to neoliberalism
  • Social quality
  • Brexit and its societal impact
  • Corporate power and the welfare state
  • Critical realist approaches to qualitative research

 

John Jordan

John would be happy to hear from potential PhD candidates considering sociological and/or social policy research in the following areas:

Welfare, welfare-to-work, unemployment, welfare economics, poverty/ ‘social exclusion’, neoliberalism, globalisation.

Please feel free to email him and/or arrange an appointment to discuss your idea or proposal.

Lucy Hanson

Dr Hanson would welcome enquiries from students considering undertaking a PhD on the following topics:

  • Permanence processes including adoption and long term care
  • Looked After Children in Scotland and England 
  • The Children’s Hearings System in Scotland
  • Youth offending and youth justice 
  • Children’s participation in decision making

 

Julia Lux

Julia is interested in supervising research on the following topics:

  • Political economy of Germany and France, industrial relations, labour and social policy
  • European economic governance and social policy
  • Regulation theory, Gramsci, critical discourse analysis

 

Alistair Jewell

Alistair is interested in supervising research on the following topics:

Homelessness, in particular alternative methods for working with and promoting engagement/participation with homeless people, developing and implementing new forms of community development and engagement and ideas related to designing new theories/challenges seeking to highlight/combat inequality and promote social justice.

Research

All members of the Department are actively involved in research and this informs teaching on all our courses.

Our research activity can be grouped into four broad areas. 'International social work', the theory and practice of radical social work, key aspects of work with children, young people and children’s rights, and crime, deviance and the media.

Staff are at the forefront of debates taking place within the University and policy sectors over key issues and questions that affect our daily lives – both as academics (students and staff) and as members of society.

We believe it is important for our students to engage in research and for us all to establish a culture of exploration and critical understanding of the modern world and its problems.

We have regular research seminars and research days where staff and students both actively engage with important research questions, where outside speakers bring different views and perspectives to bear and where students benefit from high quality presentations from leading academics in the field.

 

Research Excellence Framework 2014

In the latest national assessment of research (REF 2014) the Department did particularly well. 73.3% of the staff outputs that were entered were ranked as either 3* or 4* meaning they were regarded as 'internationally excellent' or 'world leading'. This means the Department was ranked 12th in the UK for research outputs in this subject area.

PhD Areas

NameAreas of expertise for PhD supervision
Michael Lavalette

Professor Michael Lavalette has expertise of supporting and supervising PhD students in a number of areas. He would be particularly interested in students looking to research in any of the following broad areas:

Social work: the history of social work, radical social work, international social work

Children's rights: child labour, school student strikes and political engagement

Social movements and episodes of collective action.

Rich Moth

Rich is interested in supervising research on the following topics:

Mental health social work, models of mental distress, mental health policy, social movements and mental health

Kellie Thompson

Kellie is interested in supervising research on the following topics:

Child and Family social work; ethnographic research located in children’s services; professional practice(s) in child welfare settings, including multi-agency working and information practices, safeguarding in adolescence

Steven Lucas

Steven is interested in supervising research on the following topics:

 

  • Early Intervention with Children and Families 
  • Children and Childhoods 
  • Qualitative Methodologies
  • Social Work and Service Users Voices and perspectives
  • Social Work Knowledge
  • The social construction of practice in social work

 

David Merryweather

Dr Merryweather would welcome enquiries from students considering undertaking a PhD on the following topics:

  • Youth-to-adult transitions (especially for socially excluded/marginalised young people); 
  • Young people, risk and identity.

 

Daniela Mangione

Daniela is interested in supervising research on the following topics:

Children’s rights; participatory research; teaching and learning; forest school and outdoor spaces for children and young people; drama

Helen Ashworth

Helen is interested in supervising research on the following topics:

Representation of youth and older age; intergenerational interaction; ageing and discrimination; gender and age. 

Emma Katz

Dr Katz welcomes enquiries from people seeking a supervisor for a PhD on domestic violence and abuse.

Dr Katz has expertise on domestic abuse and:

 

  • children’s agency
  • coercive control
  • mother-child relationships
  • children’s recoveries
She would be particularly interested in supervising on projects that use qualitative methods and/or are interested in gathering data with children and young people.

 

Delyth Edwards

Delyth is available to supervise PhD and Masters projects in fields related to interests and expertise in:

 

  • Care experience and identity
  • Sociology of the everyday
  • Cultural sociology
  • Cultural Participation (young people, care experienced)
  • Qualitative methodologies (biographical research, ethnography)

 

Steven Corbett

Steven welcomes PhD proposals within social policy and political sociology, in particular those that are related to any of the following broad topics:

  • Democratic participation and citizenship
  • Alternatives to neoliberalism
  • Social quality
  • Brexit and its societal impact
  • Corporate power and the welfare state
  • Critical realist approaches to qualitative research

 

John Jordan

John would be happy to hear from potential PhD candidates considering sociological and/or social policy research in the following areas:

Welfare, welfare-to-work, unemployment, welfare economics, poverty/ ‘social exclusion’, neoliberalism, globalisation.

Please feel free to email him and/or arrange an appointment to discuss your idea or proposal.

Lucy Hanson

Dr Hanson would welcome enquiries from students considering undertaking a PhD on the following topics:

  • Permanence processes including adoption and long term care
  • Looked After Children in Scotland and England 
  • The Children’s Hearings System in Scotland
  • Youth offending and youth justice 
  • Children’s participation in decision making

 

Julia Lux

Julia is interested in supervising research on the following topics:

  • Political economy of Germany and France, industrial relations, labour and social policy
  • European economic governance and social policy
  • Regulation theory, Gramsci, critical discourse analysis

 

Alistair Jewell

Alistair is interested in supervising research on the following topics:

Homelessness, in particular alternative methods for working with and promoting engagement/participation with homeless people, developing and implementing new forms of community development and engagement and ideas related to designing new theories/challenges seeking to highlight/combat inequality and promote social justice.