Research

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The School of Government and Society at the University of Birmingham is committed to the delivery of world-class research in political science and international studies. Established in 2008, the School comprises three Departments: Politics and International Studies (POLSIS); International Development (IDD) and Local Government Studies (INLOGOV).

A series of broad research themes underpin the research activities of the School.

Governance and the State
International Politics and Security Studies
Social and Political Theory
Comparative political systems and public policy

Current research projects across the School:

Select Committee Data Archive Project, 1979-Present (Mar 2015 - Sept 2016)

Select Committee Data Archive Project, 1979-Present (Mar 2015 - Sept 2016)
Description
The project will utilise quantitative methods to create and analyse a comprehensive dataset covering the membership, activities and outputs of Select Committees of the House of Commons from 1979 (the date of previous major reform) to the present in order to permit an evidence-based evaluation of the Wright reforms, as well as providing a valuable resource for understanding this vital venue for executive-legislative interaction and for parliamentary involvement in the development and scrutiny of policy.

(Not) Made in Germany? Imagining Germany from the Outside (Jan 2015 - Dec 2016)

(Not) Made in Germany? Imagining Germany from the Outside (Jan 2015 - Dec 2016)
Description
Through this project the IGS Birmingham will consolidate and expand its role as a primary hub for the support and inspiration of German Studies in the United Kingdom, as well as its reputation as a leading global research centre. The network will bring staff and postgraduate students from German universities and the worldwide DAAD German Studies Centres to the IGS in a series of five research visits focused around the core themes of the project.

Network governance and low carbon transitions in European cities (Nov 2014 - Oct 2017)

Network governance and low carbon transitions in European cities (Nov 2014 - Oct 2017)
Description
How can European cities transition to a low carbon future? What are the governance challenges in creating environmentally sustainable cities? Can ideas about 'network governance' enhance adaption to climate change by improving interaction between citizens, businesses, associations and governments?

Do flexible institutions enhance democracy? A comparative analysis of public governance innovations in Brazil and the UK (Jul 2014 - Jul 2016)

Do flexible institutions enhance democracy? A comparative analysis of public governance innovations in Brazil and the UK (Jul 2014 - Jul 2016)
Description
The purpose of this exploratory research is to bring complementary expertise from the UK and Brazil to the analysis of democratic innovations - the global search for new ways in which societal, economic and cultural problems can be resolved through the direct involvement of citizens, civil society organisations, and other parties.

Translation across borders: exploring the use, relevance and impact of academic research in the policy process (Jan 2014 - Mar 2015)

Translation across borders: exploring the use, relevance and impact of academic research in the policy process (Jan 2014 - Mar 2015)
Description
This project seeks to explore and suggest ways to address the frustrations which attempts to translate research into policy can bring. A focus of concern for academics is the fidelity of translation to their research findings. For policy-makers, the focus is often the function of the translation for the demands they are seeking to address.

More research projects throughout the school

Latest research news

Securing Sierra Leone, 1997-2013: Defence, Diplomacy and Development in Action

Securing Sierra Leone, 1997-2013: Defence, Diplomacy and Development in Action
Description
Professor Paul Jackson has recently co-authored a new book on Securing Sierra Leone, 1997–2013. Launched at RUSI in May 2015, the monograph examines the development and impact of security-sector reform on the state-building process in Sierra Leone.
Date:
Thursday 28th May 2015

Blog: Central African Republic takes a small step towards peace – but a leap is what's needed

Blog: Central African Republic takes a small step towards peace – but a leap is what's needed
Description
Written by Professor Paul Jackson. The signing of a major peace agreement by ten rebel groups in the Central African Republic is a welcome step towards peace after years of violent chaos.
Date:
Thursday 28th May 2015

Blog: As refugee crisis deepens, the world is losing patience with South Sudan

Blog: As refugee crisis deepens, the world is losing patience with South Sudan
Description
Written by Jonathan Fisher, lecturer in IDD. South Sudan has now been at war since 2013, with no end in sight. And while the two sides focus on defeating each other, the humanitarian situation on the ground is only deteriorating.
Date:
Thursday 28th May 2015

More research news throughout the School of Government and Society.

Departmental research:

International Development Department (IDD)

Institute of Local Government Studies (INLOGOV)

Department of Political Science and International Studies (POLSIS)

Research centres:

Institute for Conflict, Cooperation and Security (ICCS)

Institute for German Studies (IGS)

GSDRC