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Social Sciences Archived Events

This page provides a list of events held by the Social Sciences Team since 2009. Our more recent events can be found on our main events page here.

The Social Sciences Team have organised a broad range of events, aimed at a variety of different audiences including: experienced researchers, postgraduate students, practitioners, policy makers and the general public. Many of the events we have held have been organised with partners from the academic and research community.

Archived Events

Multicultural London English, 22 March 2011

In recent years, Cockney has been supplanted as the dominant ‘street’ language of London by a new hybrid (sometimes called Blockney or Jafaican) said to contain many elements from the speech of the Caribbean and South Asia, yet with Cockney consonants and some vowel sounds reminiscent even of Northern English. This rise of this multicultural blend, increasingly adopted by ‘anglos’ and ethnic minorities alike, is often baffling and challenging to groups beyond the inner urban young, yet it is almost certainly here to stay.

Paul Kerswill, Professor of Sociolinguistics at Lancaster University, presented aspects of his current research into this phenomenon.

This public event accompanied our Evolving English exhibition.


Parenting Culture Studies: Feeding Children in the New Parenting Culture, 21 March 2011

For further information about the meeting and view presentations please visit the group's website.


Broken down by Age, Sex and Religion: The History of the Census in Britain, 14 March 2011

This event accompanied our recent exhibition Census and Society.  The speakers, including Audrey Collins, family history specialist at the National Archive, and Edward Higgs Professor of History, University of Essex, explored the history of the Census: how it has been carried out, the information it can uncover, and reactions to it across time.


Myths and Realities 8: Manufacturing Matters - doesn't it? 2 March 2011

This debate explored the importance of manufacturing to the British economy.

Listen to the debate on our podcast page


The Myth of Mars and Venus: Do men and Women really speak different languages? 1 March 2011

As debates continue to rage as how men and women’s brains may or may not differ, Deborah Cameron tackled some of the most persistent myths about language use.


Civilizational Collapse: Dystopian Imaginings of the Past, Present, and Future (1800 - present), 1 March 2011

This event examined the fear of Civilizational collapse as a threat that runs through much of the literature, cinema, and other media of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Speakers included: Lindsay Allen, Greg Claeys, James Kneale, Richard Overy, Joanna Paul, Patrick Parrinder, Phiroze Vasunia, and Ika Willis.

For further information about this event, please see the Royal Holloway website


National Association for the Teaching of English (NATE) Conference 2011, Evolving English: One Language, Many Voices. 25 - 27 February 2011 

The British Library was proud to host the NATE Conference 2011.

For further information about this event and associated on-line resources visit the NATE website.


Cuddy-wifters, coochies & cack-handers, 23 February 2011

Remarkable recordings of dialects from the Sound Archive at the British Library illuminate investigation of the way English continues to contrast dramatically from region to region. At this event, the Library's sociolinguistics specialist Jonnie Robinson, led a discussion with three leading experts in the field: Joan Beal (Sheffield University), Rob Penhallurick (Swansea University) and Clive Upton (Leeds University).


UNCLOS and the Antarctic Treaty: competing models of Polar governance,  15 February 2011

We were pleased to host the third seminar in the series New Geopolitics of Polar Regions. The seminar discussed different models of governance for the Arctic, and examined how the Antarctic Treaty System deals with the framework provided by the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.


One Language Many Voices: Exploring English at the British Library,  3 February 2011

This talk explored the themes of the Library exhibition, Evolving English: One Language, Many Voices through our extensive audio archives. From historic dialect recordings to contemporary pop music, Jonnie Robinson, Lead Curator, Education and Sociolinguistics, demonstrated how sound recordings capture the extraordinary variety of the English language.


Myths and Realities 7 - Property Owning Democracy: Fact or Fiction? 1 February 2011

This debate explored whether or not the emphasis on the benefits of home ownership are based more on rhetoric than reality.


BSA Presedential Event: Sociology and International Migration,   24 January 2011

This was the second in a series of events organised by the BSA President, Professor John Brewer. This one day conference examined international migration, immigration and people trafficking.

For more information visit the British Sociological Association website .


BSA Climate Change Study Group - Launch Event, 17 January 2011

The British Sociological Association study group on Climate Change examined new lines of enquiry, methods and audiences. Issues considered included energy, water, mobility, justice, fairness and governance.

For more information please see the BSA Climate Change Study Group web page.


Making a difference: Social research in an era of austerity (Social Research Association Annual Conference), 7 December 2010

We were delighted to host the Social Research Association annual conference. Workshops discussed: behaviour change and action learning; using existing data; the "big society" and user-led research; national surveys; and measuring outcomes.

Speakers included: Mark Easton (BBC Home Affairs correspondent); Paul Boyle (Chief Executive of the ESRC); Jenny Dibden (Joint Head of Government Social Research); and Peter Alcock (Director of 3rd Sector Research Centre).

For more information, visit the Social Research Association website.


Myths and Realities 6: We're all Middle Class now aren't we? 1 November 2010

Commentators have been arguing about the role of class in determining life chances and life span for many years. In some ways the concept of class has become increasingly complex and fraught, until we see, for example, maps of the UK which show very different patterns of poverty, life and death. This event will look at factors that shape our identities and lives, and ask how important class is.

The debate was chaired by David Walker, Managing Director, Communications and Public Reporting, Audit Commissioner. The speakers were: Professor Fiona Devine, Head of School of Social Sciences, University of Manchester, Professor John Hills, Director, Centre for the analysis of Social Exclusion, London School of Economics, and Lee Elliot Major, Research Director, Sutton Trust.

Listen to presentations on our podcasts page


Our memories of the uprisings: the 1980s revisited, 25 October 2010

Frequently characterised as 'racial riots', the uprisings of the 1980s in Bristol, Brixton, Toxteth and Moss Side were significant reactions to the politics of late twentieth century Britain. This event brought together witnesses to offer memories of the uprisings and reflect on their context and legacy.

Speakers included: Linda Bellos OBE, Wally Brown CBE and Kunle Olulode.

Listen to the presentations on our podcasts page


New resource frontiers? Arctic and Antarctic continental shelves, 21 September 2010

This seminar examined the construction of the Arctic continental shelves as a 'final frontier' for conventional energy exploitation. What is the extent of hydrocarbon resources in the High Arctic? What consequences might result from the development of hydrocarbon resources? Are there parallels evident in the Southern Ocean and Antarctica?

This seminar forms part of the ESRC series 'Knowledges, Resources and Legal Regimes: The New Geopolitics of the Polar Regions'. Further details are available at the Polar Geopolitics website.


Myths and Realities 5: Education standards - not as good as my day?  8 September 2010

Every August the GCSE and A-level results bring a fierce debate about whether educational standards in the UK have risen or are falling.

Some commentators hark back to a golden age of education in the 50s and 60s, while others are more interested in highlighting the changing content and methods of delivery. The debate explored the key issues on standards and attitudes to education – was it really the best of days?

Listen to the presentations on our podcast page


Body Language in Business - How to use body language to your advantage in business and in life, 6th July 2010


New forms of doctorate, 18 May 2010

This was the final seminar in the ESRC series investigating the influence of multimodality and e-learning on the nature and format of doctoral theses in the social sciences. More information about the series can be found on the New Doctorates blog.


Association of Business Schools Research Conference, 23 March 2010

We were delighted to host the ABS Research Conference 2010 in the British Library Conference Centre in March. The theme of the Conference was the impact of research, and how management researchers can demonstrate impact. Speakers included Graeme Rosenberg of HEFCE, Andy Neely of AIM Research, Rob Briner of Birkbeck, and Huw Morris, Chair of ABS. The ABS Journal Quality Guide 2010 was also launched at the event, with significant revisions since the last version in 2009. Listen to the presentations, download the slides and the ABS Journal Quality Guide 2010, or find out more about this event. The 2011 Conference will be held at Cardiff Business School, but will return to the British Library in 2012. 


Myths and Realities 4: Are we what we eat?  9 March 2010

Our relationship with food: what we eat, what we buy, what we cook and the role of the food industry and the government in shaping our attitudes towards food.

Listen to presentations and find out more about this event.


Myths and Realities 3: Crime and punishment in the 21st century,  8 February 2010

Exploring attitudes, policies and media portrayal of crime and punishment.

Listen to presentations and find out more about this event.


Strategic thinking in family business - what should the future look like? 14 December 2009

This first seminar in a series of six brought together leading figures from academia, business, policy and the professions to examine the factors that drive success in family businesses, how family firms develop their strategy, and what research can tell us about running a family firm. Download slides from the event and find out more about forthcoming family business seminars. 


The Future of Work: How to meet the challenges of a shifting workplace and generate positive change for your company, 30 November 2009

This evening reception hosted by the publisher Palgrave-Macmillan featured a presentation and panel discussion considering the main themes of Richard Donkin's latest book The Future of Work and what they mean for employers and managers. Speakers included Adrian Furnham, Richard Donkin, Robin Ryde, Tom Lloyd and Elizabeth Kelan.


Myths and Realities 2: Making Sense of Risk, 18 November 2009

The issues, misconceptions and facts around risk.

Listen to presentations and find out more about this event.


Myths and Realities 1: Migration and Integration, 15 September 2009

The first of a series of events on contemporary social questions, presentations explored the evidence behind the headlines on multiculturalism, population change in towns and cities, and refugees in the UK. 

Listen to presentations and find out more about this event.


Mapping Dangerous Spaces, June 2009

A one-day postgraduate symposium held in collaboration with the University of Kent. It brought together 100 interdisciplinary researchers to discuss how we represent crime and danger, particularly in terms of mapping activities.

Find out more and download selected working papers


European Elections Symposium, 9 June 2009

Speakers, including Dermott Scott (Head of European Parliament Representation, London) discussed the recent European Parliamentary elections. Topics included: citizenship and participation across Europe; the origins of cross-Europe socialist groupings; and archiving websites for the recent elections.

Find out more, download podcasts and see presentations


Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) seminar series, December 2008 to June 2010

A series of six seminars supported by the ESRC which run until June 2010. 

Find out more, download podcasts and see presentations