Civil Society and Volunteering

The Civil Society and Volunteering research theme brings together researchers from across the Department of Social Policy, Sociology and Criminology, engaged in novel ways of thinking about contemporary social questions. Our research investigates the evolving relationship between the state and voluntary organisations as well as individual acts of volunteering.



McCabe, A. and Phillimore, J. (eds.) (forthcoming) Community Groups in Context. Local activities and actions. Policy Press, Bristol


Bennett, M. R.,Einolf. C. (2017). Religion, Altruism, and Helping Strangers: A Multilevel Analysis of 123 Countries. Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 56(2):323;341.

Bennett, M. R., Heaney J., Mach-Mortensen, A. M., and Pemberton, S. (2017). What are the effects of charitable giving on inflammatory markers among adults? A systematic review and meta-analysis. PROSPERO CRD42017079092

Bennett, M. R., Heaney J., Mach-Mortensen, A. M., and Pemberton, S. (2017). What are the effects of volunteering on inflammatory markers among adults? A systematic review and meta-analysis.” PROSPERO CRD42017079083

Phil Child, ‘Landlordism, Rent Regulation and the Labour Party in mid-twentieth century Britain, 1950-64’, Twentieth Century British History (2017).

Daiga, K., Bennett M. R. (2017). Rewarding Work: Cross National Differences in benefits, Volunteering During Unemployment, Benefits, Well-being and Mental Health.Work, Employment and Society

McCabe, A., Wilson, M. and Macmillan, R. (2017) Beyond the Early Years. The longitudinal multi-media evaluation of Big Local. Local Trust, London/Third Sector Research Centre, Birmingham.

McCabe, A. and Harris, K. (2017) Trouble in Utopia: Community Action and Social Media (Working Paper 140). Third sector Research Centre, Birmingham

McCabe, A. and Harris, K. (2017) Community Action and Social Media – a review of the literature (Working Paper 139). Third Sector Research Centre, Birmingham  


McCabe. A., Buckingham, H., Miller, S. and Musabyimana, M. (2016) Belief in Social Action: Exploring faith groups’ responses to local needs (Working Paper 137) Third Sector Research centre, Birmingham 

Mohan, J. and Bennett, M. R. (2016) “Community-level impacts of the third sector: does the local distribution of voluntary organisations influence the likelihood of   volunteering?”, TSI Working Paper Series No. 7, Seventh Framework Programme (grant agreement 613034), European Union. Brussels: Third Sector Impact.

Members of the Civil Society and Volunteering theme

Dr Laura Kelly

Dr Laura Kelly

Lecturer in Criminal Justice
School of Social Policy Student Experience Lead

Laura joined the University of Birmingham in October 2017. She previously worked at Durham University and Liverpool John Moores University. Laura’s research interests centre on work with children and young people, particularly in relation to youth crime and justice. She is a member of the Youth Justice Board’s Academic Advisory Panel and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. She ...


Dr Laurence Lessard-Phillips

Dr Laurence Lessard-Phillips

Senior Research Fellow, IRiS

Laurence Lessard-Phillips is a Senior Research Fellow who joined the Institute for Research into Superdiversity (IRiS) in May 2016. Her main research interests lie in the perceptions, measurement, and dimensionality of immigrant adaptation; ethnic inequalities in education and the labour market; the transnational behaviour across immigrant generations; and social inequalities and social mobility. ...


Professor Paul Montgomery

Professor Paul Montgomery

Professor of Social Intervention
Cross Whitehall Trials Panel Advisor and Affiliate Professor at the Department of Family Studies, University of Malta

Prof Montgomery arrived at the University of Birmingham in 2017 to take up his current post after twenty years at Oxford University where he was Professor of Psycho-social Intervention. His work is methodologically based in three main areas: Systematic Reviews, Trials (many of them RCTs) and Methods Advances in Complex Interventions. Topically, his work is wide ranging and includes Sleep, Educatio ...