UCLan’s School of Social Work has a reputation for world-leading research in social work and social policy. Our research falls into three cross-cutting strands: Children, Young People and Families; Psychosocial Wellbeing and Mental Health; Diversity, Inclusion and Social Justice. The overarching aim is to produce knowledge that has value for policy and practice and generates new thinking – research that makes a difference. We have a particular focus on researching with the participation of individuals and groups beyond the academic world, as service users, community members and citizens. Our research has been influential in the reform of child care in Eastern Europe and Central Asia as well as in the UK. We lead the ‘Making Research Count’ network in North-West England.
Our four research Centres play a key strategic role in maximising research opportunities and ensuring profile, impact and academic excellence. The Psychosocial Research Unit, founded in 2006, developed from scholarship on the psychosocial dimensions of social responsiveness, recognition and responsibility through empirical and methodological work in health, welfare, cultural and youth justice settings. The Centre for Children and Young People’s Participation is the only research centre in the UK focused specifically on children and young people’s participation. Established in 2008, The Centre is a founding member of the International Childhood and Youth Research Network and of the Research Group on Children’s Ombudspersons. The Connect Centre for International Research on Interpersonal Violence and Harm, launched in 2013, is developing a programme of strategically focused international research activity on preventing violence and harm across the life course. Also established in 2013 and based in Preston and London, the Centre for Citizenship and Community is leading cross-disciplinary work on community engagement, inclusion and wellbeing, and social care interventions to promote community participation.
This has long been a well-established research strand at UCLan, mainly focusing on the key areas of child protection, children’s rights, looked after children and a range of evaluations of major initiatives. We recently led the national evaluation of Social Work Practices for DfE in England, and have also conducted major quantitative studies of child abuse and protection.
We established The Centre in 2008 to research and promote children and young people’s participation, inclusion and empowerment, and to work with children and young people as co- researchers. We have a major and expanding programme of research into domestic and family violence. We have been involved in evaluating Children’s Commissioners in Wales and Northern Ireland, and are co-founders of the international Research Group on Ombudspersons for Children. We have also studied child trafficking and child migrants, looked after children and juvenile justice, and have advised internationally on service standards, community-based support and legislation for child care systems. Much of our research has an international perspective: recent projects have been carried out in Bulgaria, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Romania, Russia, Ukraine, Australia, Philippines, Sri Lanka and Peru. We have undertaken research and consultancy for a wide range of organisations and agencies including in the UK: BASPCAN, Children’s Commissioner for England, Children’s Fund, Department for Education and Skills, ESRC, NCH, NSPCC and NIHR. Our international research has included work for: EveryChild, National Children’s Office Ireland, Save the Children, UNDP, UNICEF and World Vision International.
The Centre for Children and Young People’s Participation is concerned with promoting and researching participation, inclusion and empowerment. The Centre is a forum for shared thinking. We promote seminars, workshops, conferences and publications and implement a planned programme of research. We focus on building links between academics, policy makers and practitioners as well as developing international links. Children and young people are involved in every part of the process – managing the Centre, planning the research programme, and carrying out research. We hold regular meetings where adults and young people work together to plan the work of The Centre and design research projects.
The Centre for Citizenship and Community is a collaboration between the university and the Royal Society of Arts with the Royal Society for Public Health and the Personal Social Services Research unit at LSE. It brings together the expertise of these partners with the experience of an associates network whose respective experience and skill mix includes, at senior level, leadership, research, policy and practice development in health and social care and beyond this, in public policy fields that include housing, criminal justice, drugs and alcohol services, arts and culture and Higher and Further education.
At the heart of our work is 'Connected Communities', a five year programme in a range of community settings around the UK directed at supporting and evaluating local interventions for achieving health, wellbeing or inclusion outcomes through engaging, articulating and harnessing the power of social and community networks.
With a focus on the social and values base to policy, research and practice; the Centre works with policy makers, commissioners, providers and communities to ensure that services are designed, developed, commissioned and delivered with citizens and their communities in the most appreciative, effective and integrated way possible.
The Psychosocial Research Unit was created to further the theory and application of psychosocial studies and approaches to research. The Unit forms part of the School of Social Work and currently pursues research in the socially engaged arts, addiction and substance misuse, communities, democracy and social policy. The Unit aims to push the boundaries of research methodology in the social sciences and actively seeks to create, discover or improve methodologies as part of the psychosocial approach. One of our areas of methodological interest is in the use of visual methods in understanding human complexity. The Psychosocial Research Unit consists of a core team directed by Professor Lynn Froggett, supported by Dr Alastair Roy, and Dr Julian Manley (email). Other colleagues from the School of Social Work also collaborate in the Unit’s research projects and teaching commitments. We aim to encourage inter-disciplinary exchanges within the university and do this partly through a seminar series called Imagination & Inquiry. These seminars include theoretical and experiential elements and are designed to attract a diverse range of participants from within and outside the university. The Psychosocial Research Unit is nationally renowned for its ground breaking work in the field and will be hosting the Association for Psychosocial Studies annual conference in 2014.
|2nd December 2015||Children's rights, a life in public service, and beyond||Professor Maggie Atkinson|
|10th December 2014||Social Abjection: The Political Aesthetics of Disgust in Neoliberal Times||Imogen Tyler. Senior Lecturer in Sociology, Lancaster University.|
Connect Centre for International Research on Interpersonal Violence and Harm
|22nd October 2014||Young(er) People's Understanding of Men's Violence Against Women'||Nancy Lombard Reader in Sociology and Social Policy, Glasgow Caledonian University|
|25th March 2015||Adolescent -to-parent abuse: The experiences and accounts of young people||Victoria Baker, PhD Student, School of Social Work, University of Central Lancashire|
|3rd February 2016||Centring Love in Domestically Violent and Abusive Relationships: Reframing the Duluth Power and Control Wheel||
Catherine Donovan, Professor of Social Relations at the University of Sunderland and lead of the Centre for Applied Social Sciences (CASS)
Imagination and Inquiry Seminar Series
|27 April 2016||Community Art Counselling: Creating spaces of empathy and engagement for traumatised South African communities||
Dr Hayley Berman, Director of Lefika La Phodiso Art Theraphy Centre, Johannesburg, South Africa
|27 January 2016||Walking, Sensing, Belonging||
Professor Maggie O’Neill, Maggie O'Neill is Professor in Criminology at Durham University
|23 September 2015||Using visual methods to explore the suspicious and the uncanny in child protection social work organisations||Jadwiga Leigh, Lecturer at the Sociological Studies Department, Sheffield University|
|19 June 2015||The Second Breath: New Thinking on Climate Change||Tessa Gordziejko (Creative Director, Imove Arts Ltd) and Tom Hunt (Performing Artist). This was a special event in the Imagination and Inquiry seminar series and was organised by the Psychosocial Research Unit at the University of Central Lancashire and funded by the Gordon Lawrence Foundation|
|29 April 2015||Role: Finding the freedom to make a difference||John Bazalgette, Honorary Fellow, Grubb School of Organisational Analysis|
|11 March 2015||'Such endings that are not over' Social Dreaming and the legacies of the slave trade.||Dr Julian Manley, Psychosocial Research Unit, University of Central Lancashire; Dr Myna Trustram, Manchester Metropolitan University|
|19 November 2014||Surrendering to the dream: unconscious communication, affect and method in research||Dr Jo Whitehouse-Hart, Lecturer in Media and Communication, University of Leicester|
|10th October 2013||Globalisation, art and displacement anxiety.||Professor Lynn Froggett, Psychosocial Research Unit, School of Social Work, University of Central Lancashire.|
|26th September 2013||A Collage of Fragments: Visual Memories, Perceptions, Associations and Meaning.||Dr. Julian Manley, Research Associate, Psychosocial Research Unit, School of Social Work, University of Central Lancashire.
William Titley, Lecturer, School of Art, Design and Performance, University of Central Lancashire.
|15th May 2013||Culture Change: art, culture and the recovery agenda.||Dr. Ali Roy, The Psychosocial Research Unit, School of Social Work, University of Central Lancashire.
Mark Prest, Director, Portraits of Recovery, Manchester.
|17th April 2013||Mouths and Meaning : a creative and interdisciplinary approach towards understanding of disordered eating||Bronwyn Platten, Artist and Researcher.|
|6th March 2013||Reason and Imagination in empirical judgement||Professor Tim Thornton, Professor of Philosophy and Mental Health, School of Health, University of Central Lancashire.|
|29th February 2013||The Number 10 shirt and the enchantment of Diego Maradona||Professor John Hughson, Professor of Sport and Cultural Studies, School of Sport, Tourism and the Outdoors, University of Central Lancashire.|
|27th February 2013||We are all unreliable narrators||Naomi Kruger,
|24th January 2013||The First of England: Photographs of the Kindertransport memorials at Liverpool Street Station||Myna Trustram,
Manchester Metropolitan University
|28th November 2012||The challenge of authenticity in popular music: the case of Elvis Costello.||Professor David Pilgrim, University of Liverpool.|
Seminars of The Centre for Children and Young People's Participation
|23rd May 2013||Plan B for Youth||Lisa Nandy MP, Shadow Children's Minister.|
|1st May 2013||Dream-crushing, prejudices and revolving doors: challenging myths about young people who are NEET.||Barry Percy-Smith, Reader in Childhood and Participatory Practice, University of the West of England.|
|20th March 2013||Muslim Children's rights in a cold climate? Problematising UK Government counter-radicalisation in the War on Terror. (English language version)
Muslim Children's rights in a cold climate? (Arabic version)
Muslim Children's rights in a cold climate? (Chinese version)
Muslim Children's rights in a cold climate? (German version)
Muslim Children's rights in a cold climate? (Polish version)
|19th February 2013||Children and young people as active citizens promoting social justice. (English languages version)
Children and young people as active citizens promoting social justice. (Non-English version)
|Claire O'Kane, Freelance Researcher and Advocate.|
|6th February 2013||Youth participation and the state: reshaping the machinery of governance with and for young people's voices. (English language version)
Youth participation and the state: reshaping the machinery of governance with and for young people's voices. (Arabic version)
Youth participation and the state: reshaping the machinery of governance with and for young people's voices. (Chinese version)
Youth participation and the state: reshaping the machinery of governance with and for young people's voices. (German version)
|Dan Moxon, Regional Participation Officer, North West Regional Youth Work Unit.|
School Research Seminars
|11th June 2013||A Road to Nowhere: high frequency contact for infants in foster care.||Professor Cathy Humphreys, University of Melbourne.|
|8th May 2013||Practice Educators perspectives on the competence of students to practice social work.||Clare Stone, School of Social Work, University of Central Lancashire.|
|5th December 2012||Drug and alcohol use and dependency among LGB people in England: the results from the first three years of a five year study.||Jez Buffin, School of Social Work, University of Central Lancashire.|
|27th November 2012||Exploring Love in Social Work (English language version)
Exploring Love in Social Work (Polish version)
Exploring Love in Social Work (German version)
Exploring Love in Social Work (Chinese version)
Exploring Love in Social Work (Arabic version)
|Hilda Thrana, PhD Fellow from the University in Lillehammer in Norway.|
|15 & 16th November 2012||Recognition and Social Welfare: A Symposium
When I look I am seen, so I exist: supplementing Honneth's recognition model for social work.
Dr. Stan Houston, Reader in Social Work, Queen's University, Belfast. Deviation as a maldevelopment or a potential resource: Recognition, norms and power in the positioning of children and young people perceived as vulnerable.
Professor Hanne Warming, Director of the Research Group, Changing Societies: Citizenship, Participation and Power, University of Roskilde. The relevance of Honneth's Theory of recognition to children's participation in society.
Professor Nigel Thomas, School of Social Work, University of Central Lancashire.
Dr. Robyn Fitzgerald, Postdoctoral Fellow with the Centre for Children and Young People (CYYP) at Southern Cross University in New South Wales.
Professor Anne Graham, Director of CYYP, Southern Cross University, New South Wales.
|7th November 2012||Bipolar relatives: involved or invisible? (English language version)
Bipolar relatives: involved or invisible? (Chinese version)
|Gerasimos Chatzidamianos, Senior Research Associate
Lord Milo Douglas, Memorial Fellow