My longstanding interests are in the local dynamics of poverty and inequality: the design, delivery and effects of neighbourhood renewal policies; and the impact of local socio-economic contexts on the social relations and organisational processes of schools. These interests have also drawn me into wider work on relationships between poverty and education and on urban trends and processes in large British cities.
I'm currently leading the Inclusive Growth Analysis Unit (IGAU) - a partnership between the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and the University of Manchester to help make poverty reduction central to processes of economic growth and devolution in Greater Manchester and to develop research-informed strategies for Greater Manchester and other UK cities. IGAU started work in January 2016 and has funding for four years in the first instance.
Recent projects including leading a major programme of research Social Policy in a Cold Climate (with colleagues based mainly at LSE) which looked at the combined impacts of recession, government spending and social policy reform on poverty and inequality in the UK since the financial crisis, an ESRC-funded project to look at the impact of home moves in the children’s early years (with Principal Investigator Professor Emerita Heather Joshi at IOE) and a project to examine the impacts of the ‘bedroom tax’ on children and their schools in Manchester.