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July 2015
WISERD E-Newsletter
WISERD Toasts Another Successful Annual Conference 

Thank you to everyone who attended the WISERD 2015 Annual Conference at the beginning of July. The event was a great success, and attended by well over 200 delegates over the course of the 3 days. 

WISERD’s Director, Professor Ian Rees Jones, praised the event, saying: "The WISERD Annual Conference came and went in a whirlwind of presentations, keynote addresses and research workshops, with some opportunities to socialise and catch up with colleagues in between. I was very impressed by the excellent presentations across a range of substantive research areas and particularly by the work of the PhD students from across the WISERD Universities."

We have a array of post-conference resources available, including blogs, keynote addresses, photographs and presentations. These can be found here.   

Competition Winners
  • ESRC Wales Doctoral Training Centre & Learned Society for Wales – Student Poster Competition: Michelle Jones (Aberystwyth University)
  • ESRC Wales Doctoral Training Centre– "3MEI" - Three-minute engagement/impact session and prize: Ceri Dalton (Bangor University)
  • WISERD/WCVA Collaborative Paper Competition: Anne Collis, Sara Wheeler, Roger Slack (Bangor University), and Alan Armstrong (Barod CIC) 
During the Annual Conference the hashtag #WISERD2015 trended 4 times on Twitter, and received over 900 tweets. 



Pupil Deprivation Grant Conference
Monday 28th September, Cardiff

With the Welsh Government pledging to raise ambition and attainment in schools through the allocation of the pupil deprivation grant and scrutiny from Estyn intensifying, our National Pupil Deprivation Grant Conference comes at a critical time to bring you transferable lessons from best practice organisations on engaging students and effectively demonstrating the impact of spending.

Bringing together both primary and secondary schools with tried and tested methods of spending the grant to achieve results, this event addresses the following key areas:
  • Developing an effective pupil deprivation grant strategy for your school
  • Monitoring and tracking the progress of students
  • Engaging with families and communities
  • Increasing the standard of teaching within your school
As schools now have a pivotal role in breaking the link between deprivation and attainment, don’t miss this opportunity to share good practice and discover how you can maximise the benefits of your pupil deprivation grant spending.

Benefits of Attending
  • Gain insight into the future of the pupil deprivation grant from a member of the Welsh National Assembly 
  • Hear from ATL Cymru on effective use of the grant within your school 
  • Take away transferable good practice on implementing a successful pupil deprivation grant strategy 
  • Identify ways of using the grant to raise attainment and narrow the gap in pupils' educational outcomes 
  • Explore methods of increasing the standards of numeracy and literacy amongst your students 
  • Learn from tried and tested methods of engaging with families and communities to ensure learning continues beyond school
For further information, please visit the event website.

Joseph Rowntree Foundation Open Call: 
Community-Led Approaches to Reducing Poverty in Neighbourhoods - A Review of Evidence and Practice

This is an open call for proposals to undertake a review of community-led approaches to reducing poverty in neighbourhoods.

The impacts of poverty stretch beyond the individual or household and into neighbourhoods and communities.

JRF is in the process of developing an Anti-Poverty Strategy for the UK. As part of this we need to broaden our knowledge of what community-led approaches have been employed at a neighbourhood level with the aim of reducing poverty. We want to learn from both UK and international examples of community-led approaches and explore different models of collective action that have worked towards reducing poverty.

The budget for this project is upto £20,000 including VAT.

The project has a timescale of 4 months, starting September 2015

Proposals should be submitted by 23.59pm on Tuesday 11th of August 2015.

Further information can be found here

Future Research Leaders 2016: Call for proposals

The ESRC are pleased to announce the fifth call for proposals for our early careers scheme, Future Research Leaders. The Future Research Leaders scheme aims to enable outstanding early-career social scientists, in partnership with their host organisation, to acquire the skills set to become the future world leaders in their field.

The call is open to high-quality candidates from anywhere in the world who have a maximum of four years postdoctoral experience and the support of an eligible UK research organisation.

Grants will be for a maximum of two years, with a pro-rata duration option for those employed part-time on a contract of 0.5 FTE or above. There is an overall limit of £230,000 (at 100 per cent full economic cost) although the actual amount you can apply for will vary depending on when you submitted your PhD and your level of academic experience. The ESRC aim to fund up to 40 awards subject to quality and available funds.

The closing date for proposals is 16.00 on 29 September 2015.

Further information can be found here

Tackling poverty in Wales - early intervention, welfare reform and routes out of poverty
15th September 2015, Cardiff

Guests of Honour: Christine Chapman AM, Chair, Communities, Equality and Local Government Committee and Kate Cassidy, Director for Communities and Tackling Poverty, Welsh Government

Timed to follow the Welsh Government's annual progress report on its Tackling Poverty Action Plan 2012-2016, and informed by the inquiry into Poverty in Wales being undertaken by the National Assembly's Communities, Equality and Local Government Committee, this seminar will focus on next steps for policies to reduce and prevent poverty in Wales.

Planned sessions discuss progress and remaining challenges for the Welsh Government's anti-poverty measures such as Communities First, early intervention programmes including Families First and Flying Start, and efforts to tackle poverty through skills and work-based training. Delegates are also expected to examine how Wales is affected by the UK Government's welfare reforms including removal of spare room subsidy and localisation of Council Tax benefits, as well as preparations for the wider roll-out of Universal Credit across Wales.

The seminar will bring together policymakers together with stakeholders including local authorities, charities and the third sector, employers, housing associations, sector skills councils, schools and education bodies, training organisations and colleges, think tanks, social and citizen groups, academics, and others with an interest in these important issues.

Further information, including how to book, can be found here
 

Latest Blogs 

Stress, Environment and the Human Body

The Future of Welsh Education – An Inspectorate Perspective

WISERD Toasts Another Successful Annual Conference

Well-Being and Six Features of the Human Condition

Wylfa Workforce Redundancies: “Mind the Gap”

Reflections on the Rising of Merthyr: The Waun Common Debates

If you'd like to contribute to the WISERD blog, please contact Natalie on WISERD.comms@cardiff.ac.uk
WISERD Civil Society Seminars 

The 2015 seminars reflect the rich diversity of projects comprising WISERD Civil Society programme. Drawing on a range of qualitative and quantitative data analysis techniques and engaging with a varied aspects of social theory they encompass: perceptions and attitudes to Street Pastors in relation to formal policing and community safety; the social processes underpinning the relationships between mass higher education and the structuring of the local social relations of civil society; civil society and differences in human rights discourses across the constituent parts of the UK; third sector organisations and public policy-making in a devolved Wales; civil society, generativity and the third age; and analysis of how changes around devolution have provided opportunities for trade unions to influence governmental decision making. The seminars are aimed at all with an interest in the key issues and policy challenges facing civil society in the twenty-first century.

5th Seminar: Civil Society, Generativity and the Third Age
7 October 2015, 2 - 4pm, G306B, Jean McFarlane Building, University of Manchester 

6th Seminar: Campaigning unions, Devolved government: reflections on state, unions and civil society 
12 November 2015, 4pm - 7pm, Jean McFarlane Building, University of Manchester 

More information

 

Methods for Research Synthesis 
3rd & 4th September 2015, Glamorgan Building, King Edward VII Avenue, Cardiff University

Focusing on the complexity that is inherent in any social context, this course will explore the theory and practice of the synthesis of social research. Since decision-makers ask questions that can be answered by many different types of research, we will explore the role of the research question in driving the selection of the synthesis method. We will emphasise the importance of checking that the synthesis method and the evidence included in the review are fit for the purpose of addressing the question, by exploring issues such as the critical appraisal of the primary studies and the robustness of the synthesis findings. We will cover a range of synthesis types, concentrating on meta-analysis to answer "what works?" questions, and meta ethnography and thematic synthesis to answer questions concerning people's experiences and perceptions. The course will include activities throughout.

The course covers:
  • The purpose and characteristics of different types of synthesis
  • Calculating effect sizes and carrying out a meta-analysis
  • ‘Translating’ findings between papers and synthesising qualitative research & theory
  • Mixed methods synthesis
By the end of the course participants will:
  • Be aware of the range of methods for research synthesis and their different characteristics and purposes
  • Understand how to prepare data for, and carry out a meta-analysis
  • Have an understanding of the principles and processes associated with synthesising qualitative research and theory
  • Understand some of the ways in which different types of research might be combined, and when this can be appropriate and useful

The course is designed for graduates and experienced policy-makers, practitioners, managers and researchers wanting to become skilled in synthesis methods. Participants should be familiar with social research methods and have some knowledge of systematic review methods.

The fee is:
  • £60 for UK registered students
  • £120 for staff at UK academic institutions, UK Research Councils researchers, UK public sector staff and staff at UK registered charity organisations and recognised UK research institutions. 
  • £440 for all other participants.
All fees include event materials, lunch, morning and afternoon tea. They do not include travel and accommodation costs. Further information about this event can be found here

Help Shape the Content of the MCS Age 17 Survey

The Centre for Longitudinal Studies is seeking input into what should be covered in the age 17 survey of the Millennium Cohort Study (MCS), scheduled for 2018. Age 17 marks a major transition in the cohort members’ lives and has the potential to be a particularly important and illuminating stage of the study. Your expertise will help us produce a high quality survey that meets the needs of researchers across a range of disciplines and that has the potential to influence policy. 

The CLS are asking academics, policy makers and other stakeholders to put forward their specific suggestions for content and questions by Friday 11th September 2015. They would also like to invite you to join them at the MCS7 Consultative Conference on Monday 16th November 2015. Registration will open on Monday 14th September 2015. 

The CLS have organised the survey content into three key themes, with a scientific advisory group responsible for reviewing and prioritising your proposals, and presenting a summary for debate at the consultative conference. 

The MCS7 scientific advisory group are:
  • Chris Taylor (Cardiff University)
  • Louise Arsenault (King's College, London) 
  • Paul Gregg (University of Bath)
  • Helen Sweeting (University of Glasgow)
  • Russell Viner (UCL Institute of Child Health)
The Age 17 scientific consultation contains three broad themes: 
  1. Activities and daily life: The behaviour of young adults and the activities they are engaged in (such as education, training, work, relationships, risky behaviours and social media, exercise/diet and cultural participation) will be important to measure well. For the first time diverging activities (not just school) will be crucial to capture
  2. Socio-emotional development: Having well-validated, state-of-the-art measures of non-cognitive/socio-emotional  characteristics (such as personality, motivation, decision-making and mental health and wellbeing)
  3. Cognitive development: Having objectively measured, well-validated measures of cognition covering domains (such as crystallised skills, fluid intelligence, numeracy and executive function) is vital
Further information about how to take part is available here

Register for the conference:
Date: Monday 16th November 2015
Time: 9.30am – 4.30pm
Location: Institute of Education, University of London
Book your place via the CLS website from Monday 14th September.
The conference is free of charge. 

Global Equality and Diversity (GED): Experiencing Diversity in the Workplace
25th November 2015, Level 32, 40 Bank Street, Canary Wharf, London, E14 5NR

A step change is taking place in thinking and action on equality and diversity in the workplace.

Booking is now open for this international conference and broadcast. 

The launch of the "National Equality Standard" sees equality and diversity understanding and benchmarking moving to a new level of accreditation.  This conferences addresses the issues in public and business, connecting their wellbeing and success to their adoption of equality and diversity with insights coming from academic study and leading business organisational practice.
Questions guiding the conference include but are not limited to the following:
  • How is ‘diversity’ perceived and accounted for by Universities?
  • How are Universities preparing for new transparency legislation?
  • What kind of processes and policies are introduced and which are successful?
  • What are the challenges related to devising and implementing equality and diversity policy in Universities?
  • How do individuals experience diversity in the workplace?

Full agenda and booking information can be seen here.

Competition launched to support empowering communities 
 
The Carnegie UK Trust is challenging organisations to put wellbeing at the heart of their work by empowering users and communities. The philanthropic organisation is offering up to £10,000 to the organisation which is doing the most to reshape services by putting citizens in the driving seat.
 
The UK-wide competition follows recent research carried out by the Trust which found the majority of the public felt that they had too little control over the public services that they received. Now, organisations from the public, charitable and private sector are being given the chance to compete for a prize fund to help contribute towards projects that put power in the hands of communities and citizens.  
 
Those entering the competition will be assessed on their application of Carnegie’s eight steps towards an ‘enabling state’, as highlighted in the Trust’s recent report. Examples include: getting out of the way, giving people help to do more and investing in disadvantaged communities.
 
Previous examples of projects that the Trust has worked with include organisations that have supported young people to play a more active role in their community and helped to reduce crime in an area facing social and economic challenges, as well as a campaign which brought a local forest into community control. 
 
The judging panel for the competition will be made up of experts across the public, business and third sectors from around the country, including Sir John Elvidge and Sir Adrian Webb. 
 
To enter the competition applicants are required to submit a three minute video alongside a written summary of their projects. Five projects will each be awarded £5,000. An overall winner from these five will then be decided by public vote, with a celebratory event to be held in London in November. The overall winner will also be presented with an extra £5,000 towards their project. 
 
To apply or to view further examples of how organisations are currently working towards an enabling state approach, please visit: enablingstate.co.uk

You can download a poster to display in your centre here
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