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Faculty of Social Sciences Showcase

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University of Stirling

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Stirling

FK9 4LA

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The Faculty of Social Sciences enjoys an outstanding international research reputation. We are particularly proud of our theoretical and applied work in a range of fields including: child welfare and protection, housing studies, problem solving justice, professional education, quantitative longitudinal analysis of large scale social survey data sets, social responses to dementia, teacher agency and the school curriculum and TESOL. Our work is pursued through multi-disciplinary, collaborative, participatory and comparative working, including co-production with organisations and individuals.

The showcase aims to highlight excellent work undergoing in five of our six core research groups and associated research centres:

Child Well-being and Protection

The research group and Centre for Child Wellbeing and Protection are committed to the delivery of excellent academic research with children, young people and families. It works to build an integrated and systemic understanding of children and young people’s lives, exploring in particular how best to support their wellbeing, and to protect them from factors that might be harmful. Group interests include mental health, resilience, and child protection, as well as children and young people’s rights, relationships, play, learning and education, their communities, and the broader social environment in which they are located. Members are particularly concerned with the impact of inequalities, and with questions of social justice.

During the session members will present a snapshot of some of the work going on in the research group. This work includes the pathways to a permanent substitute home taken by accommodated young children in Scotland; children’s experiences of domestic violence, and interventions to support them; issues around contact in families where domestic violence has occurred; decision making in the child hearing system; eco-social work specifically around working with communities prone to natural disasters and using eco-therapy to support mental health; child protection policy and practice; children and young people's rights and family support; childhood, personal life, families, intimate relationships and belonging, focused on everyday practices and material, sensory and spatial environments; professional judgement and decision-making in child protection and safeguarding.

Crime and Justice

The Crime and Justice research group is multi-disciplinary and collaborative. Its membership includes staff and postgraduate students with a range of research interests and expertise related to crime and criminal justice both theoretically and applied. The group’s research activities are structured thematically around four key areas contested concepts; critical social theory; criminal justice: system and process and organised crime.

This presentation will showcase research examples and pivotal questions to offer insights into what criminology is and is not, and what criminologists in the Faculty of Social Sciences do. David Downes (2003) has argued that criminology is a ‘rendezvous discipline’, that is, it is not a discipline in itself but a meeting place for a number of disciplines to investigate problems of crime and justice. Jock Young (2003) developed this idea, calling criminology a subject at the crossroads of sociology, law, psychology, and philosophy. The disciplines at this crossroads now also include politics, economics, cultural studies, social work, geography and architecture. Contemporary examples of research on crime, punishment and criminal and social justice are showcased by the Crime and Justice Research Group, celebrating a rich intellectual and disciplinary culture. Yet, in raising questions, we also warn against some potential pitfalls of ‘success’ in academic criminology if and where justice is neglected.

Educational Practice/Theory

Educational Practice/Theory is a dynamic group of researchers who bring innovative theoretical, conceptual and methodological insights to bear upon matters of learning and education. Group’s inter- and trans- disciplinary work plays a key role in the development of local, national and international policy and practice. Areas of expertise include digital social trends; curriculum-making and emerging pedagogies; language learning and teaching; professional learning and leadership; and philosophy of education.

During the session Professor Cate Watson and Dr Gary Husband will report on the initial stages of the ESRC-funded project Processes and Practices of Governing Boards in Colleges of Further Education Across the UK.

Public Services and Governance

The Public Service and Governance research group brings together scholars from the Faculty of Social Sciences and the University of Stirling providing cutting-edge research on public service change, reform and leadership. The research groups innovates in empirical, methodological and theoretical contributions to the challenges that public service face across the globe.

Across many recent projects, research from members has advanced our understanding of how people from marginalised groups in society experience accessing public services. This has included research with disabled people, older people, women, and people who identify as LGBT+. This research has been carried out with a range of different partner organisations and funders and helped lead to service changes to improve outcomes for vulnerable people. The talk will showcase this research and the impact it has made on policy and service delivery.

Social Surveys and Social Statistics

The Social Surveys and Social Statistics research group within the Faculty of Social Sciences comprise a cluster of staff and postgraduate students who undertake applied social research through the statistical analysis of large scale datasets from social surveys and from other related sources.

In recent years, there have been important expansions in the volume, scale and quality of data sources that are available for members of the group to work with. This session will draw attention to some exciting new aspects of the social science data landscape and will highlight selected examples in which projects within the research group are taking advantage of new forms of large scale research data.

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University of Stirling

Court Room

Stirling

FK9 4LA

United Kingdom

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