Dr Sophie Hadfield-Hill

School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences

Dr Sophie Hadfield-Hill

Contact details

School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences
University of Birmingham
Edgbaston
Birmingham
B15 2TT
UK

About

Sophie Hadfield-Hill is a Human Geographer whose research is informed by children's, urban and development geographies. Sophie has been awarded an ESRC Future Research Leaders grant to explore urban living, sustainability and everyday life within the context of a new city development in India.

Biography

Sophie Hadfield-Hill studied Geography at the University of Leicester (BA, MSc, PhD) graduating in 2009 with a PhD (thesis title: The future of responsible lending in India: perceptions of sustainability and the environment – supervised by Professor Jenny Pickerill and Professor Mike Bradshaw).

She subsequently moved to the Centre for Children and Youth, The University of Northampton to work as a post-doctoral researcher on the ESRC funded New Urbanisms, New Citizens (NUNC) project – exploring children and young people’s everyday life and participation in sustainable communities (2009-2013). Her responsibilities included ethnographic fieldwork in two case study areas, design of research tools, organisation of community based workshops, and research reports and dissemination to a range of academic and practitioner based audiences.

Between 2012 and 2013 Sophie worked on externally-funded research projects in the Centre for Children and Youth regarding children and young people’s experiences, issues and perceptions of Community Safety and Policing and Victim Experience of the Criminal Justice System.

In 2013 Sophie was awarded an ESRC Future Research Leaders Grant to explore New Urbanism in India (2013-2016); a unique opportunity to investigate the everyday lives of children and their families living and moving through new urban environments in the emerging market context (£303,456 FEC).

Sophie joined the School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences in 2014 as a Lecturer in Human Geography.

Visit Sophie’s ESRC project website.

Postgraduate supervision

Sophie would be interested to hear from potential PhD candidates in the fields of geographies of children and young people, urbanism and sustainable living across various geographical contexts.

Research

Research interests and projects I am engaged with are framed around three distinct but interrelated themes:

  • Urbanism and sustainable communities
  • Children and young people's everyday lives
  • Development in the context of newly-emerging economies  


New Urbanism in India: Urban Living, Sustainability and Everyday Life  (£303,456 FEC)

Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)

Principal Investigator (2013 - 2016)

This is a unique opportunity to investigate the everyday experiences of children and their families living in new large scale developments in India.  Current research into the lives of families in large scale, ‘walkable’, diverse, inclusive, sustainable spaces is lacking, particularly in the emerging market context. The research is predominantly qualitative; however, an innovative mobile ‘app’ will be developed to explore family mobility. Project aims:

i) Investigate the everyday lives of children and their families, researching their interactions, issues and experiences in a new urban context;

ii) Develop innovative tools for conducting community based research in rapidly-developing urban environments;

iii) Develop academic and practitioner understanding of how models of urban design are being transferred between contexts and communities. 

Visit Sophie’s ESRC project website.


Youth Consultation on Community Safety and Policing and Victim Experience of Northamptonshire's Criminal Justice System

Post-doctoral researcher (2012-2013)

Centre for Children and Youth, The University of Northampton

Project responsibilities:

  • Coordination of focus groups with 87 young people from hard-to-reach communities
  • Assist with the collection and analysis of 1,526 paper and online surveys
  • Qualitative one-to-one interviews with 54 victims of crime (aged 10-18) 


New Urbanisms, New Citizens: Children and Young People's Everyday Life and Participation in Sustainable Communities (ESRC)

Post-doctoral researcher (2009 - 2013)

Centre for Children and Youth, The University of Northampton

Research team:

  • Professor Pia Christensen (PI) (University of Leeds)
  • Dr. John Horton (Co-PI) (University of Northampton)
  • Professor. Peter Kraftl (Co-PI) (University of Leicester)
  • Dr. Sophie Hadfield-Hill (University of Birmingham)

During 2009‐13 researchers from the Universities of Leeds, Leicester and Northampton completed a major

research project investigating the experiences, issues and needs of young people (aged 9‐16) living in new

and rapidly‐expanding communities in the ‘Milton Keynes / South Midlands’ (MKSM) Growth Area. The project was funded by the UK Government’s Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC).

The project team concentrated their research in four case study communities in MKSM, chosen to represent different models of urban development.  The project team worked with 175 young people across the four communities, plus a range of adult residents, policy-makers and practitioners.

Core research activities included:

  • Up to six months of observation and note-taking in each community
  • Up to four interviews with each young person (311 in total), covering their daily routines, mobilities, sustainability, and citizenship
  • A ‘GPS’ study - 122 young people carried a GPS device for one week, which recorded their movements, and took part in subsequent interviews about their mobilities
  • 35 ‘community walks’, directed by young people
  • Interviews with 50 local, regional and national practitioners, planners and policy-makers  

Academic research findings can be found on the project website, related to: Perceptions of sustainable design; Mobilities, Connectivity and shared surfaces; Outdoor play; Citizenship: belonging and participation; Moving into a new community, living on a building site.  There are also a series of evidence-based recommendations relating to the planning, design, construction and development of new housing developments.

Visit the project website.

Publications

Horton, J., Christensen, P., Kraftl, P. and Hadfield-Hill, S. (2014) 'Walking ... just walking': everyday pedestrian practices of children and young people, Social and Cultural Geography, 15, 1, 94-115

Hadfield-Hill, S. (2014) CSR in India: Reflections from the banking sector, Social Responsibility Journal, 10, 1.

Kraftl, P., Horton, Christensen, P., and Hadfield-Hill, S. (2013) Living on a Building Site: Young People's Experiences of 'Sustainable Communities' in the UK, Geoforum, 50, 191-199.

Hadfield-Hill, S. and Horton, J. (2013) Children’s experiences of participating in research: emotional moments together. Children’s Geographies. Online: 10.1080/14733285.2013.783985

Horton, J., Hadfield-Hill, S., Christensen, P. and Kraftl, P. (2013) Children, young people and sustainability: introduction to special issue, Local Environment: The International Journal of Justice and Sustainability, 18, 3, 249-254.

Hadfield-Hill, S. (2012) Living in a sustainable community: New spaces, new behaviours? Local Environment: The International Journal of Justice and Sustainability (Special Issue: Children, Young People and Sustainability), 18, 3, 354-371.

Hadfield-Hill, S. (2007) The Greening of Project Finance, Geography Compass, 1, 5, 1058-75. 

Reports

Hadfield-Hill, S. (2013) Victim experience of Northamptonshire’s Criminal Justice System: A focus on children and young people, Centre for Children and Youth, The University of Northampton

Christensen, P., Kraftl, P., Horton, J. and Hadfield-Hill, S. (2013) Children and Young People’s Everyday Life and Participation in Sustainable Communities: Project overview and summary of key findings, New Urbanisms, New Citizens.

Hadfield-Hill, S. (2012) Transition from Primary to Secondary Education: Young People’s Experiences, Centre for Children and Youth, The University of Northampton.

Hadfield-Hill, S. Horton, J. and Cook, H. (2012) Youth Consultation on Community Safety and Policing, Centre for Children and Youth, The University of Northampton and Northamptonshire Police Authority.

Back to top