Dr Catherine Durose

Dr Catherine Durose

Institute of Local Government Studies
Reader in Policy Sciences

Contact details

School of Government
Muirhead Tower
University of Birmingham
Edgbaston, Birmingham
United Kingdom
B15 2TT

Catherine Durose is a Reader in Policy Sciences at the Institute of Local Government Studies and recent Director of Research and Knowledge Exchange for the School of Government at the University of Birmingham.

Catherine is a leading expert on urban governance and public policy, interested in questions of how we initiate and facilitate inclusive decision-making and social change in urban contexts. She has sought to address this question in her research, with particular focus on issues such as intermediation, participation, decentralisation and democratic innovation.


  • PhD, University of Manchester, 2007
  • MA (Research), Governance and Public Policy, University of Manchester, 2004
  • BA (Hons), Politics, University of Sheffield, 2001


Catherine is known for her work using co-production as an approach bringing together different voices and forms of expertise from academia and beyond to address urban challenges. Catherine has recently written for Nature on how the academy can better acknowledge and value such work.

Catherine’s research has attracted awards in excess of £3 million from diverse funders including the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), Arts and Humanities Research Council, UK Government and the Equality and Human Rights Commission.

Catherine has previously held a prestigious Research Councils UK Fellowship at De Montfort University, and has also held International Visiting Research Fellowships at the Great Cities Institute, University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC), the Institute for Governance and Policy at the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB), and Tilburg University’s School of Politics and Public Administration.

Catherine specialises in teaching post-experience students at Masters level and is an experienced PhD supervisor.

At the University of Birmingham, Catherine is recognised as a leader in both civic engagement and equality and diversity. For the past five years, Catherine has worked with Citizens UK, a national charity using broad-based community organising to generate collective action for positive social change. For her work convening Win: Win - a network by and for women in higher education - Catherine was named as a ‘Woman of Action’ as part of the ‘Making Space’ initiative celebrating women’s leadership at the University of Birmingham.


  • MSc Leadership in Public Services
  • MPA Democracy, Governance and Participation 

Postgraduate supervision

Catherine is interested in and happy to discuss supervising post-graduate students working on issues connected to her main research interests. Catherine also welcomes proposals from qualified and motivated scholars to undertake PhD or post-doctoral research.

Current doctoral supervision:

Adriana Algarin Castillo: social accountability in Colombia (Colencias)

Mega Hendrawaty: street level bureaucracy in Indonesian poverty relief programmes (Indonesia Endowment Fund for Education, LPDP)

Matthew McKenna: blame avoidance in UK central-local relations (ESRC 1+3)

Brenda Ogembo: deliberation in legislative environments in Kenya (Commonwealth scholarship)

Sally Ward: self-organisation and mobilisation in under-represented communities

Current post-doctoral supervision:

Dan Silver: participatory evaluation for policy learning (ESRC Fellowship)


Research interests

My current research centres on a series of key challenges and questions for urban governance:

  • Knowledge challenge: how do we mobilise and create knowledge to address the complex challenges of urban governance? 
  • Place challenge: how may a focus on place help to address the challenges of urban governance? 
  • Social justice challenge: how do we enhance underrepresented voices in urban governance?     
  • Democratic challenge: how do we design more inclusive urban governance?

Current projects

My recent responses to these challenges have been channelled through two major research projects:

Other activities

Catherine is a former Editor-in-Chief of the leading interdisciplinary journal, Local Government Studies, where she remains a member of the Editorial Board. She is also a member of the Editorial Board for the Australian Journal of Public Administration, and until recently Critical Policy Studies and Policy & Politics.

Catherine has held various advisory roles to UK government, including both the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government and the Office of Civil Society, on issues such as community organising, participatory budgeting and neighbourhood working.


Richardson, L., Durose, C. and Perry, B. (2019) ‘Three tyrannies of participatory governance’, Journal of Chinese Governance, 4(2), 123-143.

Richardson, L., Durose, C. and Dean, R. (2019) ‘Why decentralize decision making? English local actors’ viewpoints’, Governance, 32(1), 159-176. DOI: 10.1111/gove/12365

Durose, C., Richardson, L., Perry, B. (2018) ‘Craft metrics to value co-production’, Nature, 562 (7725), 32. DOI: 10.1038/d41586-018-06860-w

Richardson, L., Durose, C., Perry, B. (2018) ‘Moving towards hybridity in causal explanation: the example of citizen participation’, Social Policy & Administration, 53(2), 265-278. DOI: 10.1111/spol.12481

Durose, C., Mangan, C., Needham, C. and Rees, J. (2017) ‘Generating “good enough” evidence for co-production, Evidence & Policy, 13(1), 135-151 DOI: 10.1332/174426415X14440619792955.

Durose, C. and Richardson, L. (2016) Designing public policy for co-production: theory, practice and change Bristol, Policy Press/ Chicago, University of Chicago Press.

Durose, C, van Hulst, M., Jeffares, S., Escobar, O., Agger, A., de Graaf, L. (2016) ‘Five ways to make a difference: perceptions of practitioners working in urban neighborhoods’, Public Administration Review, 76(4), 576-586. DOI: 10.1111/puar.12502

View all publications in research portal


Changing relationships between the state, communities and citizens; local decision-making, service delivery, neighbourhood working and community participation and empowerment.


Communities and Cohesion

My research focuses on urban governance and public services, with particular interests in participation, intermediation and co-production. My interests span governance and public policy, policy design, analysis and implementation, democracy, representation and participation, decentralisation and localism, neighbourhood working and regeneration, public service delivery and reform.