View the latest news from departments within the Faculty of Social Sciences below.
Staff and students are celebrating as it was announced that we have been ranked 2 amongst UK Linguistics Departments in the Times and Sunday Times 2020 University League Table. Our new ranking puts the department just behind Oxford in this nationally recognised league table.
Audacious Citizenship – new project!
Dr Rachel Turner King (Principal Investigator, Education) and Professor David Mond (Global Sustainable Development), Dr Bobby Smith (Theatre and Performance Studies) has been awarded Coventry City of Culture funding for the project “I don’t want your hope, I want your action”: exploring youth eco-citizenship through verbatim theatre and digital ethnography in the city.
This project invites local school pupils to become active researchers. Using digital ethnography and verbatim theatre, the young people will work collaboratively to investigate the complex interrelationships between their environment, their lives and the climate crisis.
Drawing on the interdisciplinary background of the team, an applied theatre approach will enable open discussion around these issues and provide an opportunity for young people to explore the climate crisis creatively, and to perform their findings to audiences in the city.
The Education and Psychology Research Active Staff Network (EPRAN) has prepared an exciting and varied calendar of events for the 2019/20 academic year including seminars from colleagues from across the university, and external colleagues from UCL and the University of Exeter.
Briefly, the topics of the seminars will be:
16th October 2019 (1.30-3pm): Research and practice in education settings, including pupils with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND)
20th November 2019 (12.30-2pm): Psychological outcomes and interventions for adults with autism and/or intellectual disabilities
4th March 2020 (12.30-2pm): Transitions from primary to secondary school for children with Down syndrome and Williams syndrome
29th April 2020 (12.30-2pm): A contemporary approach to educational policy making for pupils with SEND
10th June 2020 (12.30-2pm): Research involving fathers
More information about all five seminars can be found here https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/soc/cedar/epranseminar and further information about the seminars (including abstracts) will be uploaded to the website as soon as it becomes available.
EPRAN is a network for research active staff and post-graduate research students at the University of Warwick to share research findings related to education and psychology. We also aim to promote inter-departmental and external networking and research collaborations.
Professor David Stark (CIM) and Professor Nick Chater (WBS) Event
Early Childhood Student Clare's paper was accepted for publication by The Early Childhood Studies Degree Network
Clare's paper was recently accepted for publication by The Early Childhood Studies Degree Network (ECSDN). Clare was nevous to submit the paper but said she received a lot of support from Warwick. You can read our interview with her here.
Huge congratulations to Clare from all of the team at Centre for Lifelong Learning!
Warwick Economics Alumna wins Investment Woman of the Year
A Warwick Economics alumna has won the Investment Week "Investment Woman of the Year (Small/Medium Firms)" Award in recognition of her work as a Policy Lead.
Caroline Escott (pictured in the centre), a BSc Economics, Politics and International Studies graduate, was awarded the Investment Week award for leading on investment and the Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) policy at the Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association and for coordinating the Association’s work on Diversity & Inclusion.
Investment Week, who are working in partnership with HSBC Global Asset Management to improve diversity within the Investment sector launched the Women in Investment Awards 2019, and since then, have received over 1,000 nomination and believe the ceremony will only get bigger and better.
We caught up with Caroline to ask her about her award and about her career.
What is the award for?
It is for “Investment Woman of the Year” for smaller to medium firms. It was partly in recognition of the work I do in my day job, leading on investment and ESG policy at the Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association – the trade association for the pensions and institutional investment sector. The award also acknowledged my role as co-ordinator of the PLSA’s work on diversity and inclusion to ensure that as “the voice of the pensions industry” we are at the forefront of efforts to build a more diverse pensions and investment sector, which can better respond to diverse savers’ needs.
What does the award mean to you?
The pensions sector lags behind many others in its approach to diversity and inclusion – 83% of pension trustee boards are male and 3% of trustees are under 40 – so it is wonderful to be recognised for our efforts at the PLSA. Hopefully it will serve as inspiration to the team going forwards: we have big plans for 2020, including a practical trustee diversity guide to support schemes in their recruitment efforts, a number of roundtables and events to bring key actors from across the investment chain together and redoubling our efforts to raise awareness in the sector of why diversity matters.
Why is it important to improve diversity within the investment sector?
There’s a whole host of evidence which shows that more cognitively diverse boards avoid behavioural biases such as groupthink and make better decisions. Individuals trust their savings and investment to the asset management industry and it’s vital that investment firms and pension trustee boards make every effort to ensure they make the right decisions which protect and enhance the value of people’s savings.
Have things started changing already or is it still a long way to go?
There are a number of organisations and individuals doing excellent work in the pensions and investment industry including The Diversity Project, NextGenNow, the Young Pension Trustees Network and many others. This momentum and genuine commitment is welcome but too many organisations still see diversity as a ‘nice to have’ or merely pay lip-service to the concept. Hopefully, the PLSA’s work to encourage pension scheme clients to ask their investment service providers and the companies they invest in exactly what they are doing to become more diverse and inclusive workplaces will draw good diversity practices up through the investment chain.
What would you say to our students considering a career in investment?
Mostly, that I hope that my answers don’t end up putting off anyone who thinks they don’t neatly conform to the asset manager stereotype or “look” from pursuing a career in the sector! A role in investment or investment policy can be extremely rewarding. You get the opportunity to work in a dynamic environment where no two days are the same and are taking decisions that can have a fundamental impact on the retirement incomes that people receive. My Economics and International Political Economy degrees at Warwick and the LSE were fundamental in equipping me to be unafraid to challenge others’ assumptions and approaches, which I think has stood me in good stead in my career: I’d strongly encourage Warwick Economics graduates from all and every background to consider a career in investment and investment policy.
About Caroline Escott
Caroline works for Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association (PLSA) as Policy Lead: Investment & Stewardship which involves working on a number of institutional investment and corporate governance issues. She is responsible for co-ordinating the Association's work on Diversity & Inclusion.
After graduating from Warwick with a degree in Economics, Politics and International Studies in 2006 she headed to LSE to do a MSc in International Political Economy. While there, she did a Parliamentary internship before getting her first job at a political consultancy. Then she got a full-time job in Parliament working on financial policy research for a couple of MPs.
Her next career step was to become Head of Public Policy at a sustainable finance trade association before moving on to pensions policy at the Association of Professional Financial Advisers and now at the Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association, where she also co-ordinates the PLSA's diversity work.
Caroline says about involvement in various projects: 'I've always had a fairly active extra-curricular life, from volunteering in an Oxfam bookshop or local political activism to leading an anti-human trafficking organisation of 140 volunteers. This year I will become a trustee of one of the UK's largest pension schemes - which should keep me pretty busy in my spare time!'
The photo above is from the Award Ceremony and has been submitted by Caroline Escott.
The University of Warwick ESRC Impact Acceleration Account (IAA) is pleased to invite applications for its first Postdoctoral Innovation Fellowship.
Warwick is one of 26 UK universities receiving funding from the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) for an Impact Acceleration Account (IAA), which supports engagement activities with non-academic stakeholders such as policymakers, NGOs, businesses and public beneficiaries to enable the conversion of established research into impact.
As part of this programme, the ESRC IAA will fund four fellowships (one per academic year) to support students towards the end of their PhD to think about how their research could be applied to the needs and challenges of organisations across different sectors, and to develop proposals to put this into practice.
The Fellowship will be awarded for up to three months or part-time equivalent. Projects can commence any time from 14 October 2019, but must be complete by 31 March 2020.
This opportunity is open to applicants who will have submitted their PhD thesis for examination before their proposed Fellowship start date (the Fellowship can commence whilst awaiting viva) OR who will be within one year of having been awarded their PhD at the proposed start date. The PhD must be in a social science discipline and have been undertaken at the University of Warwick.
Those with a full-time, permanent, academic post are not eligible to apply.
For further information and details on how to apply please visit: https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/soc/impact/iaa/innovationfellow
Professional identity transformation: supporting career and employment practitioners at a distance
The need for countries to provide appropriate support to all individuals making labour market transitions into, and through, volatile and complex labour markets is uncontroversial.
What is controversial is, despite this, that the professional identity of career counselling and employment practitioners across Europe remains somewhat fragile, partly because of the need to balance tensions around funding targets and reducing unemployment, with the individual needs of clients.
Maintaining professionalism can similarly prove challenging because time poor practitioners find it difficult to update their learning needs, continually, in the face of operational pressures, placing at risk their ability to familiarise themselves with new theories, research and ways of working.
This article by IER’s Jenny Bimrose and Alan Brown examined how career guidance counselling and employment practitioners can be supported at a distance using technology, to facilitate their professional identify transformation. Drawing on empirical results of European research (2014 – 2018), the article presents findings from an international online learning course designed to support practitioners’ professional identity across Europe and discusses the implications for practice.
Fifty free downloads are available here.
We are delighted to announce that the Department of Politics and International Studies (PAIS) is ranked 1st of 84 UK Politics departments in The Times/The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020. This influential national league table reflects latest data, including student satisfaction (NSS), research excellence, and graduate prospects.
Professor Nick Vaughan-Williams, Head of PAIS, commented:
“Students and staff in PAIS will be justifiably proud that, for the second year in a row, the Department has been ranked 1st among UK Politics Departments in The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020. This wonderful result underscores that our twinned commitment to viewing students as partners in our education strategy and as beneficiaries of our long-standing research excellence is a winning formula for sustained success. With a renewed focus in 19/20 on employability, internationalisation, widening participation, and equality and diversity – featuring initiatives to deepen our EU partnerships, further liberate the curriculum, and enhance the student voice – this latest league table success is a terrific start to the new academic year. Over the coming weeks my colleagues and I look forward to welcoming all new and returning students to the Department and to driving forward these agendas together.”
Dr Justin Greaves, Director of Student Experience and Progression, commented:
“This outstanding result is testament to all the brilliant students and staff in PAIS. This league table shows how we are a leader, both within the Russell Group and the sector as a whole, in terms of student experience and teaching quality. It is particularly pleasing to see our results have increased yet further in these categories. I look forward to working with all our incoming and returning students to ensure that the PAIS department goes from strength to strength, combining intellectual stretch and rigour with the highest possible levels of academic support.”
We thank all staff and students who have contributed to this outstanding achievement. With a number of exciting and ambitious plans for the 2019/20 academic year and beyond, we look forward to sustaining and building on these successes in the months and years ahead.
Kavka Prize 2020: Patrick Tomlin 'On Limited Aggregation'
Patrick Tomlin has been awarded an 'Honourable Mention' for his essay On Limited Aggregation in this year's prestigious Gregory Kavka/University of California, Irvine Prize in Political Philosophy, announced in December 2019 by the American Philosophical Asociation.
Patrick Tomlin's paper, first published in Philosophy and Public Affairs in 2017, advances some new, and fatal objections against the popular view of Limited Aggregation, and argues that the Limited Aggregation view has less real world relevance than its proponents claim, in particular regarding health care distribution.
The Gregory Kavka/UCI Prize in Political Philosophy is awarded every other year in odd years to the author of a paper in a refereed journal, an original book chapter or an original essay published in a collection with multiple contributors, from any area of political philosophy and political theory.
Are you interested in developing your skills, enhancing the student experience, and being paid in the process?
The Department of Sociology is currently inviting applications from finalist students for a number of 'Student Voice' Ambassador roles. Ambassadors will act as an interface between students and staff, feeding back both ways. The role will include, for example, inputting into departmental discussions on teaching policy and curriculum change.
If you are interested in this role, please send your CV and a supporting statement (of up to 350 words) outlining why you feel you would make a good 'Student Voice' Ambassador to the department’s Director of Student Experience, Dr Andre Celtel (A.Celtel@warwick.ac.uk).
The closing date for applications is 2 pm on Thursday 03 October 2019.
Ceremony at the Institute of Physics