Investigators

Professor Peter Dwyer

University of York, Principal Investigator

150PeterDwyerPeter moved toYork in July 2013 having previously held senior posts at Nottingham Trent University and the universities of Leeds and Salford. His research interests come together around two main themes. First, a critical engagement with the notion of social citizenship, especially in relation to welfare rights and responsibilities and social inclusion/exclusion and second, the impact of international mobility for both migrants and welfare states. His work has been supported by an number of funders including the ESRC, the JRF and the European Commission. Alongside the Welfare Conditionality: Sanctions, Support and Behaviour Change project, Peter is also currently working on the EC funded Roma MATRIX project which involves partners in 10  EU Member States.

Research interests

  • Social citizenship
  • Welfare conditionality
  • Social inclusion/exclusion, membership
  • International migration and welfare
  • Forced labour and migration
  • Qualitative methods including socio-legal approaches

Professor Suzanne Fitzpatrick

Heriot-Watt University, Co-Investigator

Suzanne completed her PhD on youth homelessness at the University of Glasgow in 1998. She subsequently held a number of posts in the Department of Urban Studies at the University of Glasgow, including ESRC Research Fellow in Housing and Social Exclusion and, latterly, Lecturer in Housing and Social Policy. From 2003 to 2010 Suzanne was Joseph Rowntree Professor of Housing Policy and Director of the Centre for Housing Policy at the University of York. Suzanne took up her Research Professorship in Housing and Social Policy at Heriot-Watt University in July 2010. Suzanne specialises in research on homelessness and housing exclusion, and much of her work has an international comparative dimension. Suzanne was until recently Editor of the International Journal of Housing Policy.

Research interests

  • Homelessness and housing exclusion
  • Housing policy
  • Housing law
  • Housing rights
  • Social housing
  • Domestic abuse and violence
  • Begging, street drinking and other aspects of street culture
  • Social justice, social cohesion and social exclusion
  • Critical realism

Professor Del Roy Fletcher

Sheffield Hallam University, Co-Investigator

Del was awarded an MSoc Sc in Urban and Regional Studies from the University of Birmingham in 1990. He worked at ECOETC Research and Consulting Ltd and Coventry University before joining Sheffield Hallam University in September 1995. Del is a professor of labour market studies at the Centre for Regional Economic and Social Research. He has extensive experience of research exploring the difficulties faced by severely disadvantaged groups in the labour market and the evaluation of pilot programmes. In respect of the former, he is an acknowledged national expert on offender employment issues. He has, for example, directed a landmark study into the problems experienced by those with a criminal record in the labour market and the first ever review of offender enterprise support in England.

Del has directed several national evaluations of labour market pilot programmes, including the Jobseekers Mandatory Activity, Working Neighbourhoods Pilot, the New Deal Innovation Fund (rounds one, two and three) and the National Development Programme. He was part of the team responsible for evaluating the City Strategy and is currently evaluating Talent Match, an initiative designed to tackle high levels of youth unemployment, for the Big Lottery Fund. He has authored 27 academic publications including 20 articles in national peer-reviewed academic journals.

Research interests

  • Offenders in the post-industrial labour market
  • Evaluation of labour market pilot programmes
  • Worklessness and labour market disadvantage
  • UK welfare reform and its impact on deprived individuals and communities
  • The role and impact of welfare conditionality

Professor John Flint

University of Sheffield, Co-Investigator

150JohnFlintJohn was awarded an MA in Politics from the University of Glasgow in 1994. Whilst continuing his studies at Glasgow, he lectured part-time in HM Prison, Saughton, Edinburgh before gaining an MPhil in Urban Policy in 1998. John became a part-time Research Associate on the ESRC-funded Edinburgh Study of Youth Transitions and Crime, within the Centre for Law and Society, University of Edinburgh and also joined the Department of Urban Studies, University of Glasgow as a part-time Research Assistant. He continued in both roles until 2000 when he was appointed as a full-time Research Fellow in the Department of Urban Studies and then Lecturer in Housing Studies in 2004.

John moved to Sheffield Hallam University in 2005, where he took up a post as Senior Research Fellow in the Centre for Regional Economic and Social Research. He became a Principal Research Fellow at Sheffield Hallam in 2006 and was appointed as Professor of Housing and Urban Governance in 2007. In October 2011 he was appointed to the post of Professor of Town and Regional Planning in the Department of Town and Regional Planning at Sheffield University.

Research interests

  • Housing policy
  • Housing management
  • Citizenship
  • Crime and anti-social behaviour
  • Neighbourhood renewal
  • Social cohesion and religion

Professor Sarah Johnsen

Heriot-Watt University, Co-Investigator

150Sarah_JohnsenBefore taking up the post of Senior Research Fellow at Heriot-Watt University in 2010, Sarah held research posts at Queen Mary University of London, the University of York, and The Salvation Army (UK & Ireland).  Prior to that she conducted her PhD in Social Geography at the University of Otago in New Zealand.   Much of Sarah’s work focuses on homelessness, addiction, and related forms of street culture (e.g. begging and street drinking).  She has particular expertise in relation to ‘deep’ social exclusion and welfare provision for people with complex support needs such as co-occurring substance misuse and mental health problems. Sarah also has ongoing interests in the role of faith communities in welfare provision and the practice and ethics of research involving vulnerable people.  Most of her work has an explicit policy focus.  Funders have included, amongst others: Economic and Social Research Council, Arts and Humanities Research Council, Joseph Rowntree Foundation, Department for Communities and Local Government, Department for Education, Welsh Government, and Crisis.

Research interests

  • Homelessness
  • Street culture
  • Social exclusion
  • Faith communities and welfare provision
  • Qualitative research methods and ethics

Dr Sharon Wright

University of Glasgow, Co-Investigator

150SharonWrightSharon’s research and teaching interests are broadly in the field of social policy and welfare reform. She is particularly interested in understanding social security and employment policies in practice, highlighting the role of social actors (or ‘agency’) in policy formation and implementation. This includes investigating the ways in which advice and job search assistance are accomplished in different types of organisation from the perspectives of front-line workers and benefit recipients. Sharon’s work also contributes to understandings of what poverty means to people and how this can be located in relation to broader social divisions and inequalities of income and wealth. Her preferred approach draws on the ideas and methods of interpretivist sociology in order to investigate the lived experience of social policies in practice. Her doctoral thesis ‘Confronting Unemployment in a Street-Level Bureaucracy: Jobcentre Staff and Client Perspectives’ (University of Stirling, 2003) was an ethnography inspired by the classic Chicago School participant observation studies and the bottom-up approach to policy analysis pioneered by Michael Lipsky. Before taking up her current post, Sharon held lectureships at the University of Oxford and the University of Warwick (where I also completed the Warwick Teaching Certificate in Post-Compulsory Education, 2004).

Research interests

  • Welfare to work policies
  • Welfare reform governance and marketization
  • Conditionality
  • Employment and benefits advice
  • Agency
  • Social security
  • Poverty
  • Social policy making and implementation
  • Social policy in post-devolution Scotland
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