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Projects in 2005

Community participation and social inclusion: The work of Community Mobilisers in Milton Keynes

Investigators: Deb Drake (Lecturer, OU Faculty of Social Sciences), Kate Smith (Curriculum Manager, OU Faculty of Social Sciences), Katy Simmons (OU Faculty of Education and Language Studies)

The Impact of EU Enlargement on Central European Party Systems and Electoral Alignments

The British Academy-funded project focuses on the process of EU enlargement and its impact on party systems and electoral alignments in the eight Central European countries involved in the process since 2004. EU enlargement and the membership of these countries is likely to have had a significant impact on the character and spectrum of parties present in these countries during the process of enlargement and the early phase of a European Union that numbered twenty-five in 2004 and reached twenty-seven in 2007.

ESRC Identities and Social Action Research Programme

The ESRC invested £4 million in 25 research projects based in universities around the UK. These projects will deepen our understanding of the processes involved in the making of selves, groups and communities.

Identities in Process: Becoming Bangladeshi, African Caribbean and White Mothers

Does motherhood change a woman's identity? How does becoming a mother differ from how it did a generation ago? And how do such changes differ depending on a woman's ethnic background? While much research has been done on the transition to motherhood, little is known about how ethnicity and 'race' differentiate the process of becoming mothers. This qualitative psycho-social study is about the dynamic, personal experiencing of a particular identity for the first time: becoming a mother.

The Good Citizen

Despite the fact that the general topic of citizenship is all around us, the notion of the good citizen is rarely explored. This is because the research focus has been on just one aspect of the increasing rates of movement around the world: the live debate about immigration. This has prompted plenty of work on the issues in citizenship that bear directly on the immigration question: citizenship rights and entitlements, and the qualifications for membership of the citizen body that trigger access to rights and entitlements.

Migration, Democracy and Security (MIDAS)

In response to 9/11, governments across the world have introduced policies that have impacted on traditional freedom rights - the core to liberal democracies. The securitisation - i.e. the legitimation of emergency measures by reference to an existential threat - of the freedom of movement played an important role in developing these policies. The Copenhagen School of security studies has argued that securitisation is problematic to democratic politics.

Behind Closed Doors: Researching Intimacy and Sexuality in Families

Researching Families explores the emotional make-up of normal family life. The project investigates families' experiences and understandings of intimacy and affection looking at how feelings are expressed, the verbal and non-verbal affective communication between parents, parents and children, and siblings. The first phase of the project (April 2005-March 2006) is a small scale, methodological pilot project, which focuses on the potential of different methods of researching intimacy and emotion in families. The project is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC).

Governing the Subjects and Spaces of Ethical Consumption

This research project, funded under the ESRC/ AHRC Cultures of Consumption programme, examines the pragmatics of getting people to adopt 'ethical' consumption behaviour. Empirical research will examine how the ethical dispositions already implicit in routine consumption become the object of explicit policies and campaigns of ethical consumption; and how the adoption of ethical consumption practices transform the patterns of self-cultivation practised by ordinary people in everyday life.

Creating Citizen-Consumers: Changing Relationships and Identifications

This recently completed project, funded by the ESRC and AHRB under the 'Cultures of Consumption' research programme, explored changing relationships and identifications in the intersection between the public and public services. It studied three different services: health care, policing and social care in a period when public services were being urged to treat people who used services as 'consumers'. The research team surveyed and interviewed members of the public, front line staff and managers in three services - health care, policing and social care in order to explore:

Research projects archive