February 2016


February 2016 Newsletter of the Social Policy Research Centre

Middlesex University


SPRC website: www.mdx.ac.uk/sprc

To contact us: sprc@mdx.ac.uk 


  • New Research Projects
  • Conference, Seminar and Workshop Presentations
  • Research Networks
  • Publications
  • Recent Research Projects
  • Other SPRC News
  • Research Training


New Research Projects

Professor Eleonore Kofman is working with colleagues on the following research projects:

  • 2015-2017 EVI-MED Constructing an evidence  base of contemporary Mediterranean migrations,  ESRC-DifD Strategic Urgency Grants  (with Prof. Brad BlitzDr. Alessio D’Angelo, Dr. Nicola Montagna and Martin Baldwin-Edwards).
  • 2015-2017 DIVERCITY Preventing and combating homo- and transphobia in small and medium cities across Europe, DG Justice Rights, Equality and Citizenship. Lead organisation: University of Barcelona. Legal expert on the UK team (Dr Erica Howard) with Professor Eleonore Kofman, Dr Elena Vacchelli and Dr Simon Harding
  • 2016-2017 The Value of Culture in Conflict – Investigating the Sustainable Livelihood Generation for Craftswomen in Azad Kashmir (Pakistan), CI (Neemal Raina PI, School of Art and Design)

Dr Lisa Clarke will be collaborating with colleagues, Laura Foley and Lawrence Dadzie, from the School of Health and Education, on a new research project:

  • March-July 2016 ‘Evaluating the Effectiveness of Digital Storytelling in Educational Settings: Engagement, empowerment and impact’, Department of Mental Health, Social Work and Integrative Medicine Small Grants


Conference, Seminar and Workshop Presentations
  • Dr Helena Wray gave the following presentations:

– Led seminar at International Centre for Parliamentary Studies on management of spousal migration 9th November 2015

– Led seminar to COMPAS, University of Oxford on financial requirements for migrant partners and the evidence in the OCC report, 12th November 2015

– Presentation on human rights and family reunification at meeting of Eastern Partnership Panel on Migration and Asylum, Tbilisi, Georgia 26th November 2015

  • Dr Erica Howard presented on “Multiple discrimination, intersectionality and conflicts with other grounds” at a Seminar on 9 and 10 November 2015, organised by Equinet, the European Network of Equality Bodies.
  • Dr Erica Howard will be presenting the study on ‘Implementation of the Employment Equality Directive. The Principle of Non-discrimination on the Basis of Religion or Belief’ to the European Parliament Committee on Employment and Social Affairs in Brussels on 17th February.
  •  Professor Eleonore Kofman participated in a Workshop on Managing Citizenship, Security and Rights: regulating marriage migration in Europe and North America, UQAM, Montreal, 1-2 October 2015.
  • Professor Louise Ryan and Magdolna Lőrinc presented a paper about ‘Interrogating Early School Leaving, Youth Unemployment and NEETs’ at the conference on Young people at risk of becoming NEET: evidence, policies and challenges, organised at Middlesex University on the 13th of November 2015.
  • IMISCOE Spring Conference 2016 – Professor Eleonore Kofman and Dr Alessio D’Angelo will contribute to the next IMISCOE Spring Conference 18-19 February 2016 in Copenhagen presenting preliminary findings from the ESRC-funded ‘EVI-MED’ project. For further information visit: www.mdx.ac.uk/evimed
  • Magdolna Lőrinc’s paper ‘The Aspiration Generation. Educational and Occupational Aspirations in London’ was accepted for the American Association of Geographers Annual Meeting, as part of the symposium on Young People and the transition to adulthood: identities, mobilities and belonging(s).
  • On 3rd-4th March, members of the SPRC team (Professor Louise Ryan, Dr Alessio D’Angelo, Neil Kaye and Magdolna Lőrinc) will be travelling to Antwerp, Belgium, to take part in the next consortium meeting for the Reducing Early School Leaving in Europe (RESL.eu) project.  Representatives of the nine partner institutions from across the EU will be present as discussions will be made relating to the next phase of the five year study. Empirical research is on-going, with a follow-up survey of 20,000 young people and qualitative interviews of young NEETs (those not in education, employment or training) currently under way. Planning for the analysis and dissemination stages to follow will be a primary focus of the upcoming consortium meeting.


Research Networks

Professor Eleonore Kofman:

  • International expert member of SSHRC (Canada) Managing Citizenship, Security and Right: regulating marriage migration in Europe and North America, Anne-Marie D’Aoust, UQAM, 2015-2018
  • IMISCOE: Global Mobility and Familial and Intimate Relations, Coordinator


Recent Research Projects
  • Professor Eleonore Kofman and Dr Helena Wray with Saira Grant and Charlotte Peel (JCWI) 2015 Family Friendly? The impact on children of the Family Migration Rules: A review of the financial requirements, Office of the Children’s Commissioner



Caretta, M. A. and Vacchelli, E. (2015) ‘Re-Thinking the Boundaries of the Focus Group: A Reflexive Analysis on the Use and Legitimacy of Group Methodologies in Qualitative Research’ Sociological Research Online, 20 (4), 13.

Dodsworth, F., Vacchelli, E.  and Watson, S. (2015) ‘City’ in Key Terms in Material Religion (ed.) S. Brent Rodriguez-Plate. London: Bloomsbury Publishing

Vacchelli, E. (2015) ‘Localism and austerity: a gender perspective’ Soundings no.60, Summer.

Howard, E. (2016) ‘Implementation of the Employment Equality Directive. The Principle of Non-discrimination on the Basis of Religion or Belief’ has now been published. Available at: http://www.europarl.europa.eu/…/536345/EPRS_STU(2016)536345…

Dr Helena Wray Signed book contract with Hart Publishing for book on article, British courts and immigration


Other SPRC News
  • Dr Helena Wray With Professor Eleonore Kofman, provided updated expert report on impact of minimum income threshold for sponsors of overseas spouses for Supreme Court hearing in February in case of MM v SSHD, January 2016
  • Dr Helena Wray – Evidence extensively cited in support of judgment in Supreme Court decision Ali and Bibi v SSHD [2015] UKSC 68
  • Dr Erica Howard taught four sessions, under the Erasmus exchange programme, at the International week at the Faculty of Law, Business and Political Sciences at the University CEU Cardenal Herrera in Valencia, Spain, between 14 and 17 December 2015. The course Erica taught addressed equality and freedom of religion; EU equality and non-discrimination law; discrimination on the grounds of religion and belief in EU law and under the European Convention on Human Rights; and the possible conflict between freedom of religion, the right to be free from religious discrimination and the right to be free from sexual orientation discrimination.


Research Training
  • Dr. Lisa Clarke will be conducting another two-day NVivo 10 CPD Training Course on 6th and 7th April 2016 for MU staff, external delegates and visiting academics. For more information, click here


For more information, please visit https://www.facebook.com/SprcMdx and http://www.mdx.ac.uk/our-research/centres/social-policy-research-centre