Dr Wen Wang, Professor Sibel Yamak, Neil Anderson

Diverse workforces are better enabled to deal with uncertainty, partly because they can respond to employee or customer needs more effectively due to the multiple experiences and perspectives they bring. In two recent studies by CIPD (April 2020) and McKinsey (May2020), over 40% of employers believed investments in diversity and inclusion (D&I) strategies helped the business during the pandemic. Given increased challenges and pressure faced by many businesses right now, good D&I should be an asset for increased employee engagement and good will to help.

Whilst there has been progress in D&I practices, given the pandemic’s lingering shadow for almost…


Dr Steve Iafrati

Photo by Jay Wennington on Unsplash

There are currently record numbers of people in the UK homeless or living in temporary accommodation such as hostels and bed and breakfasts. Shelter, the housing charity, estimates that approximately 320,000 are currently homeless in the UK; equivalent to one and a third the population of Wolverhampton. The costs of homelessness includes over £1bn being spent on temporary accommodation for people who are homeless as well as up to £20,000 per year per person on support and interventions in some cases. The personal costs affect mental health, education, employment and put pressures on family life.

However, it is important to…


The above link is to a really thought provoking post from Erika Hall at Mule Design Studio. She writes from a design perspective, but there is a lot of transferrable learning for social researchers in her writing.

The quote below is particularly striking:

“Maintaining a research mindset means realizing that bias is rampant, certainty is an illusion, and any answer has a short shelf life. A good question is far more valuable in the long run. And you can’t ask good questions — meaning you can’t learn — until you admit you don’t have the answers.”

Social researchers can draw…


Dr Jane Booth & Rev. Sarah Schofield

Photo by zae zhu on Unsplash

As a society we find it difficult to talk about death, despite the fact that death, dying and bereavement affect us all; death is a unifying element of life. However, death has become increasingly professionalised and medicalised. In other words, the responsibility to deal with death and the dying has been devolved to health and social care workers and other professionals. This serves to diminish the normality — and inclusivity — of death which ‘goes on in every community, every day, this very moment’ (Kellehear, 2012: viii). As a result caring for the dead and dying have moved away from…


Photo by CDC on Unsplash

‘The education of our children is crucial for their welfare, their health and their future’, said the Prime Minister last week, confirming the phased reopening of schools on 1st June. Part of the government’s rationale to return children to school as soon as possible has been that those from poor and disadvantaged backgrounds will fall behind the furthest if school gates remain closed. Rightly, the government is concerned that children whose parents are unable to provide effective learning support at home are suffering greatly during the pandemic.

But children’s welfare, health and life chances are also inextricably linked to poverty…


James Stanyer

Photo by Luke Matthews on Unsplash

The outbreak of the global Covid-19 pandemic in spring 2020 has uniquely and significantly affected both the research process and the potential importance of the research project itself. The West Midlands faces a plethora of challenges that the West Midlands Combined Authority have committed to responding to through an Inclusive Growth Strategy. The purpose of the research project was to conduct a case study that will shape a comprehensive policy analysis.

As the severity of the pandemic became more evident through March and April the focus of attention switched from planning out an interview strategy and contacting potential respondents to…


Andy Jolly, Laura Caulfield, Rachel Massie, Bozena Sojka, Steve Iafrati, & James Rees

Photo by Andrew Neel on Unsplash

Collaborative and cooperative research across academic disciplines and university administrative boundaries can be challenging even in less uncertain times. In an attempt to understand and propose solutions, researchers at ICRD have developed a paper, published online today, to test an innovative combination of methods to generate and evaluate ideas and strategies; and to write about the findings using collaborative online methods. Researchers came together in sessions designed as a hybrid of World Café and Delphi techniques. The findings were written up drawing on insights from the use…


Bircan Ciytak

Photo by Daniel Schludi on Unsplash

In recent years there has been a rise in anti-Turkish feeling in Germany that corresponds to the political shift in Turkey since 2003, with a drive to expel people with Turkish heritage. Many German media outlets such as ‘Der Spiegel’, ‘Die Welt’ and politicians have consistently criticised the JDP (Justice and Development Party) and its policies. The policies of the Turkish government have been expanded, strengthened and now aimed to embrace Turkish migrants abroad.

The expansion and strengthening of Turkish politics under the JDP government included, amongst other things, the right of Turkish citizens abroad to participate in elections and…


Ella Simpson

There is a growing interest in the work of third sector organisations in the criminal justice system, and this increasingly extends to the little understood world of creative arts interventions with offender populations. Research to date has tended to focus on one of two goals; to evaluate the impact of the arts on psychological, behaviour and educational achievement (fitting neatly into the policy of the ‘evidence base’), or; to map the structural dynamics of the sector and its purported ‘drift’ towards coercive collusion with the state (evidencing the sector as fitting neatly into the policy). The problem with this kind…


Nicky Adams

Photo by Jo Szczepanska on Unsplash

Just the title starts opening up all sorts of questions…what is the difference between management and leadership (practically and according to the academics)? Is there one? Does it matter? And what exactly do we mean by the voluntary sector? I will make some attempt to address these questions, as well as consider what the challenges are in the sector.

Firstly, what do we mean by the voluntary sector? It can be described and defined in a number of ways. Today the term ‘voluntary’ refers to organisations which are both dependent on and managed by volunteers as well as the sector…

Institute for Community Research and Development

ICRD is based at @wlv_uni, we care about social justice, positive change, evidence-informed policy and practice, working in partnership to improve lives.

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