Social and Criminological Research Seminars

Date and time
Wednesday, 13 February 2019 15.00 -
Wednesday, 15 May 2019 16.00

One Friar Gate Square, Derby Campus
One Friar Gate Square
Agard Street

The Social Cultural and Legal Research Centre at the University of Derby is pleased to announce its Autumn series of seminars in social and criminological research. 

The seminars are open to all students and staff from the University as well as the general public. 

The seminars will all take place 3pm-4pm.

For security and catering reasons, please use the booking form below to register for individual seminars.

The Value of Using Arts-Based Methods in Criminological Research with Young People
Dr Thomas Dodsley, Lecturer in Criminology, University of Derby

Room: FG204

This paper presents a philosophically and theoretically informed rationale for promoting the use of arts-based methods in criminological research with young people. Contextualised within cultural criminological perspectives and underpinned by interpretive phenomenological approaches to social research, the paper discusses the value of performative drama in unearthing rich and meaningful data. The substantive discussion promotes the use of performative drama to produce embodied and contextually situated knowledge in the interests of social justice, harm reduction and methodological advancement. The paper positions the discussion within the broader methodological parameters of the discipline of criminology and considers the potential wider application of performative drama and arts-based methods, alongside the challenges and tensions which are commonly associated with such approaches to criminological research.

Bringing War Home: Children’s Books and Militarisation
Dr Helen Brocklehurst, Senior Lecturer, Social Sciences, University of Derby

Room: FG204

The proposed chapter will explore the concept of everyday militarism that may be present in children’s informational texts and picture books on war and terrorism. It is part of a wider research project on children’s political and military literacy and draws from an archive of over 150 texts and educational resources from the UK and USA. Available in public libraries or popular online booksellers, books for younger children especially are often uncoupled from political and societal narratives of security, and presented separately to histories, cultures and texts on peace and democracy.

Narratives of fatalism, fear and difference are common within them as well as insensitive or offensive images. I will identify tropes of race, belief and gender within these ‘stories’ and look at unwritten tales of militarization and the juxtaposition and contextualisation of photographs and graphic scenes.

This analysis will also consider the production and intended consumption of the most popular of these texts – as resources, bibliotherapy, an aid to literacy, or as civic preparedness and citizenship. I will look at their marketing, their review, and publishers’ appeals to parents and educators, and illustrate how younger readers have been addressed in terms of their anticipated agency.

I argue that simplistic books which engage young people in current affairs, through facts, fear and the circulation of terror may create a pseudo-adult experience of autonomy and excitement – and undermine appeals also made to the child as a conflict-resolving citizen. A notable gap in the provision of balanced and accessible reading material arguably complicates the enabling of counter-terrorism education – (CVE-E). I will end with examples of good practice in print, and online and conclude by reflecting on the nature of security in an age of political children.

Tactical Contact – Is this an effective and ethical police use of force?
Rob Smallwood, Lecturer in Professional Policing, University of Derby

Room: FG204

There has been an increase of robberies in recent months in London committed by moped riders. Some of these have involved organised gang activity, the use of knives or other weapons, and some of them have involved pushing the riders of other mopeds or motorcycles from their machines and subsequently theft of their vehicles. As a response to this trend, the Metropolitan Police have adopted a new policy known as ‘tactical contact’ allowing officers in vehicles to ram moped riders who are suspected of having committed such offences. The decision to allow police drivers to use their vehicles in order to knock suspected robbery offenders from their mopeds in urban settings has created some controversy in the British media, culminating in the shadow home secretary Diane Abbott criticising this tactic in November 2018 by claiming that officers “are not above the law.” Sajid Javid, the current home secretary, has claimed in response that this tactic “is exactly what we need.” This seminar seeks to address some of the issues related to the effectiveness and ethics of tactical contact.

The British Army in Northern Ireland: Combat, Cohesion and Deviancy
Dr Edward Burke, Assistant Professor in International Relations, University of Nottingham

Dr Edward Burke specialises in insurgency, terrorism and British/EU foreign and defence policy. Prior to joining the University of Nottingham in September 2017, he was a Lecturer in Strategic Studies at the University of Portsmouth.

From 2010 to 2011 he was Deputy Head of the International Police Coordination Board in Kabul, Afghanistan; previously he served as a Strategy, Planning, Analysis and Reporting Officer at the EU Police Mission in Afghanistan. He has also worked as a Foreign Policy Fellow at FRIDE (Fundación para las Relaciones Internacionales y el Diálogo Exterior) in Madrid and at the Centre for European Reform in London.

Dr Edward Burke is the author of An Army of Tribes: British Army Cohesion, Deviancy and Murder in Northern Ireland (Liverpool: Liverpool University Press, 2018).

In this paper, Edward Burke will argue that British Army small infantry units enjoyed considerable autonomy during the early years of Operation Banner and could behave in a vengeful, highly aggressive or benign and conciliatory way as their local commanders saw fit. The strain of civil-military relations at a senior level was replicated operationally – as soldiers came to resent the limitations of waging war in the UK. The unwillingness of the Army’s senior leadership to thoroughly investigate and punish serious transgressions of standard operating procedures in Northern Ireland created uncertainty among soldiers over expected behaviour and desired outcomes. Mid-ranking officers and non-commissioned officers often played important roles in restraining soldiers in Northern Ireland. The degree of violence used in Northern Ireland was much less that that seen in the colonial wars fought since the end of World War II. But overly aggressive groups of soldiers could also be mistaken for high-functioning units – with negative consequences for the Army’s overall strategy in Northern Ireland

Room: FG101

The Margin of Appreciation Doctrine and the Interpretation of the European Convention on Human Rights as a Living Instrument
Rachael Ita, Lecturer in Law, Derby Law School, University of Derby

Room: FG204

The significance of the margin of appreciation doctrine has been underscored recently with the adoption of Protocol No 15 which calls for the inclusion of the terms ‘margin of appreciation’ and ‘subsidiarity’ in the Preamble of the European Convention on Human Rights. This development reflects the disquiet amongst member States to the Convention that the doctrine is not being given enough weight by the European Court of Human Rights in the determination of cases before it. One of the interpretive tools that is perceived to be having a negative effect on the margin of appreciation is the living instrument doctrine which has been blamed for narrowing the margin of appreciation afforded to States. This thesis brings an original contribution to the literature in this area by considering the interaction between the margin of appreciation and living instrument doctrines in the case law of the Court. The contribution is achieved in two ways: (a) methodologically: through the methodology adopted which is a combination of the quantitative method of descriptive statistics and the qualitative method of doctrinal textual analysis; (b) substantively: through the systematic examination of the case law of the Court from January 1979 to December 2016 in which both the margin of appreciation and living instrument doctrines are present. The lens of the relationship between rights and duties is applied to the case analysis. The case analysis is used to draw conclusions on the nature of the relationship and whether living instrument arguments are superseding the margin of appreciation doctrine where there is conflict. The results of the case analysis also shows distinctions in the interpretive approaches of the Court at the admissibility and compliance stages. The overall results of the study show that there are a variety of ways in which interaction takes place between both doctrines and the nature of both doctrines will continue to require a close interaction between the Court and the State parties in their compliance with obligations under the Convention.

Dr David Hicks, Senior Lecturer in Criminology, University of Derby

Room: FG204


The occupational experiences of Black and Asian police officers and staff as victims of bias, prejudice and ‘hate’
Dr Irene Zempi, Senior Lecturer in Criminology, Nottingham Trent University

Room: FG301

Since the Macpherson Report, there has been pressure on the police to increase diversity of police staff in the UK. Although British police have recently recruited greater numbers of Black and Asian police officers, they still remain vastly outnumbered by their white counterparts. Drawing on qualitative data from 30 individual and 5 focus group interviews based in a force in the UK coupled with an ethnographic approach, this paper examines participants’ experiences of bias, prejudice and ‘hate’. This study employs intersectionality (the presence of multiple aspects of identity) in order to gain an understanding of the issues experienced by Black and Asian police officers and staff as victims of bias, prejudice and ‘hate’ both ‘internally’ within the force (from work colleagues and supervisors) and ‘externally’ (from members of the public, suspects and offenders). 

Dr Royce Turner, Research Fellow, University of Derby

Room: TBC


Modelling Franchise Law in the European Union?
Michala Meiselles, Senior Lecturer in Law, University of Derby

Room: FG202

What kind of franchise regulation should emerge in the EU? Should the US paradigm serve as a blueprint for reform of such regulation? Sparked by the call of the European Parliament (EP) for a review of the law governing franchises in the retail sector, due to the underperformance of this sector relative to the United States and Australia, and drawing on the binary framework developed in the US, this paper puts forward a number of recommendations for the reform of the system governing franchises in the EU.

Book your place

* Indicates a required field

Fill out my online form.