People and projects

As well as research champion Klaus Dodds, academics from across the faculties are undertaking research related to the Security and Sustainability research theme.

Research Theme Reid Scholarship holder 2013/14

Shaun Wright

Research theme: Sustainability and Security

Members of the supervisory team

Dr John Bryden - School of Biological Sciences

Professor Vincent Jansen - School of Biological Sciences

Professor David Denney - Centre for Criminology and Sociology

Professor Peter Adey - Department of Geography

Additional collaborators:

Dr Alasdair Pinkerton - Department of Geography

Title: Tuning in to terrorist signals

How do terrorists use Internet platforms such as Twitter, for recruitment and radicalisation? Do the connections between different groups on Twitter relate to their connections offline? How do accounts form and integrate with existing networks of like-minded people?  Are there language and behavioural patterns that allow distinction between real versus mimic accounts? I would like to try and discover the answers to all of these questions.

Given the interdisciplinary nature of the questions, to find out I'm integrating three different techniques. I will use network and quantitative analysis of Twitter users, together with mathematical modelling of how millions of pairs of users' interactions affects their language and combine this with large scale discourse analysis of Tweets, the shortness of which is quite novel.

More information on the Research Theme Reid Scholarships

Cyber Security Cartographies: CySeCa

Researchers from the Information Security Group were selected by intelligence agency GCHQ and EPSRC to use their expertise to investigate the science of cyber security. 

Led by Dr Lizzie Coles-Kemp, senior lecturer in ISG with 21 years of experience, 17 of which are in security management, this project aims to tackle cyber crime and make the UK more resilient to cyber attack.

Impact and Mitigation of Emergent Diseases on UK Insect Pollinators

The Impact and Mitigation of emergent diseases on major UK insect pollinators is being led by Dr Mark J F Brown, reader in Evolutionary Ecology and Conservation in the School of Biological Sciences, alongside his co-investigator Professor Vincent Jansen, professor of Mathematical Biology.

They have been investigating the impact and mitigation of emergent diseases on major UK insect pollinators.  Using radar tracking, field and laboratory experiments, they are investigating diseases caused by Deformed Wing Virus and Nosema Ceranae. 

Local Solutions for Future Challenges COBRA in the Guiana Shield, South America

Dr Jay Mistry, senior lecturer in Geography, is currently coordinator of COBRA (Community Owned Best practice for sustainable Resource Adaptive management), which is an EU-funded project working with indigenous groups in the Guiana Shield of South America. It's main aim is to find ways to integrate community solutions within policies addressing social, economic and environmental crises through accessible information and communication technologies.

Staging and Performing Emergencies: The Role of Exercises in UK Preparedness

Dr Peter Adey, Reader in Human Geography, has three areas of enquiry in his research projects, notably the political and technological spaces of emergency and evacuation.  This resulted in the ESRC-funded project Staging and Performing Emergencies: The Role of Exercises in UK Preparedness.  

Dr Peter Adey is also involved in another project entitled Social Media Technologies and the UK Armed Forces.

Other people involved in this research theme

Dr Alasdair Pinkerton, lecturer in Human Geography, is also involved. He is a researcher in geopolitics and political geography, with his main interests being the South Atlantic and South Asia as well as Canada, the US and the UK.

Other participants include Professor David Denney, Professor of Social and Public Policy in the Criminology department and Dr John Bryden, Postdoctoral Research Assistant from the School of Biological Sciences.

Legitimising the Discourse of Radicalisation: Political Violence in the New Media Ecology

Dr Akil N Awan, lecturer in History, has research interests in the history of terrorism and political violence more broadly. He currently works on a number of projects that focus on understanding causes and processes of Radicalisation, and the growth of Violent Extremism. He was Co-Investigator on the ESRC-funded project: 'Legitimising the Discourses of Radicalisation: Political Violence in the New Media Ecology'. 

Border Theatre and Political Conspiracy

 Dr Sophie Nield, senior lecturer in Drama, is concerned with questions of space, theatricality and representation in political life and law as well as the performance of ‘borders’, such as the US/Mexico border and the former site of the Berlin Wall.

Water Politics - India, Pakistan and the Indus Treaty

 Dr Dan Haines, British Academy Postdoctorate Fellow, from the department of History is currently participating in a three-year research project that could help prevent future conflicts in India and Pakistan. He is examining the history of the Indus Basin on which both countries rely for hydroelectricity and to irrigate agricultural land. 

US Foreign and Security Policy

Dr Michael Williams, reader in International Relations in the Politics and International Relations department, has research interests in war studies and international security. His current focus is US Foreign and Security Policy.

In 2013, his book  Between Annihilation and Restraint: Science, Law and Liberalism in the American Way of War  ,will be published.

Legitimising the Discourses of Radicalisation

Professor Ben O’Loughlin, Professor of International Relations and Director of Research in the Politics and International Relations department, was co-investigator of the ESRC-funded Legitimising the Discourses of Radicalism: Political Violence in the new Media Ecology. 

The project analysed the content of images, sounds and words used by those who claim to hold radical views and wish to legitimise terrorist acts as well as how these views are represented in mainstream media and how understandings are shaped by news reporting.

Biopolitics of Security Network

Dr Luis Lobo-Guerrero, reader in Politics and International Relations, is involved with the project Biopolitics of Security Network, which is a web-based multi-functional research platform and postgraduate teaching facility. 

It co-ordinates research initiatives and developments in security mechanisms and works as a forum for those working on biopolitics and security.


Environmental Accountability - Sustainability, SMEs and the role of the accountant

Run by principal investigator Professor Laura Spence, the professor of Business Ethics at the School of Management, with co-investigators Dr Gloria Agyemang and Dr Leonardo Rinaldi  , lecturer in Accounting and director of the MSc in International Accounting, this project looked at environmental sustainability in businesses. It investigated the potential for further widening SMP advice provision to include the topic of environmental sustainability as this is emerging as a key issue to accounting businesses in particular.

Advancing Casualty Recording

Advancing Casualty Recording: Implications for Good Practice and Policymaking/Recording Casualties of Armed Conflict: a Database, Analysis and summary of current and Best Practice is the project of   Professor Michael Spagat  from the department of Economics.

He has been researching armed conflict since 2004, in particular looking at common patterns that range across war as well at how to record the number of casualties in these conflicts. He is currently writing a book entitled Conflict Analysis, which looks set to be followed up by a book on conflict mortality in Iraq.

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