Couple Relationships in the 21st Century
The Enduring Love? project aims to bring together a network of academics and researchers studying different dimensions of personal relationships, family life, intimacy and sexuality, and relationship education and support.
These networks include academics working in:
The Researching Families project examined the processes and practices of family relationships. The project aimed to invigorate understandings of intimacy and family relationships through an incisive engagement with the sociology of intimacy and interpersonal relationships in contemporary Western society and the methods used to research families, children and personal life. The project was established through an ESRC grant in 2004 (RES-000-220854), which funded the empirical study Behind Closed Doors.
This ESRC funded seminar series explored the value and insights of visual methods for researching and understanding the dynamics of social policy, inequality and disadvantage. Organised around the themes of photography, film and video, design, the creative arts and new visual technologies, its aim was to generate an intellectually rigorous, policy focused visual research agenda while stimulating wider public conversations about inequalities and the role of the visual in sustaining and/or ameliorating these.
The Living Apart Together (LAT) project aims to find out who has these relationships, why, what they mean to the couples involved and whether these couples represent a new family form or an expansion of the 'traditional' family. This research is multi-method and will use large scale representative survey data, semi-structured interviews and in-depth psycho-social, bio-narrative interviews. Using this mixture of methods the research team hope to understand the broad context in which these LAT relationships are taking place, as well as individual motivations and understandings of these partnerships. The project is funded by the ESRC and hosted at the University of Bradford Centre for Social Research. It brings together researchers from the University of Bradford, Birkbeck College (University of London) and the National Centre for Social Research (NatCen).
Eleanor Wilkinson is a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow in the School of Geography at the University of Leeds. She is interested in exploring the intersections between sexuality, culture, and the political economy. Her research focuses upon ways of loving and living that fall outside of the romantic dyadic ideal, and looks at a variety of different practices such as the rejection of sex, the rejection of romantic relationships, and the blurring of friendship and sexual relationships.
For further details on the project and all media enquiries, please contact:
Professor Jacqui Gabb
Chair of Sociology and Intimacy
The Open University
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
School of Social Sciences and Global Studies