Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research

Making sense of the social world


Centre for the Study of Social and Political Movements

Information

The study of social and political movements at Kent has a long and distinguished history, beginning with Frank Parkin's work on middle class radicalism and the peace movement, and Krishan Kumar's work on revolutions. Since the Centre was established in 1992, it has continued to bring together work on a variety of contemporary forms of social and political movements and collective action, with some emphasis upon environmental movements.

The Centre was a founding member of the ERASMUS network 'Social movements, conflicts and political action', a connection which offers the possibility of exchanges with several European centres of social movement research. Other links have been developed with the Social Science Research Centre in Berlin (WZB), the Centre d'Etude des Mouvements Sociaux in Paris , and through active participation in the European Consortium for Political Research and the Research Committees of the ISA and ESA.

The Centre's approach to research is methodologically pluralistic and interdisciplinary, and we do not exclude any topic that can be construed as relevant to the study of social and political movements.

We seek to build on an existing concentration of strength that is unique in the UK.

Staff members

Staff Profiles

  • Dr Alexander Hensby

    Research Associate School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research a.r.hensby@kent.ac.uk 01227 82 (3086)
  • Jeremy Kendall

    Senior Lecturer School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research J.Kendall@kent.ac.uk 01227 82 (7157)
  • Professor Larry Ray

    Professor of Sociology School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research L.J.Ray@kent.ac.uk 01227 82 (7151)
  • Professor Christopher Rootes

    Professor of Environmental Politics and Political Sociology School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research C.A.Rootes@kent.ac.uk (3374)
  • Dr Balihar Sanghera

    Director of Graduate Studies (Taught) School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research B.S.Sanghera@kent.ac.uk 01227 82 (7341)
  • Professor Iain Wilkinson

    Professor of Sociology School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research I.M.Wilkinson@kent.ac.uk 01227 82 (4328)
  • Dr Joy Zhang

    Senior Lecturer in Sociology School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research Y.Zhang-203@kent.ac.uk 01227 82 (7574)

Members from other Schools

  • Ben Seyd, School of Politics and International Relations

External associates

  • Dieter Rucht (Science Centre Berlin [WZB])
  • Mario Diani (Universtá di Trento);
  • Eugene Nulman (Birmingham City University)
  • Matthew Ogilvie (Canterbury Christ Church University)
  • Clare Saunders (University of Exeter)
  • Nikos Sotirakopoulos (Loughborough University)

Collectively, the members of the Centre bring together a remarkable range of expertise in the study of social movements. Much of the research undertaken by Centre affiliates has attracted funding from the European Commission, UK research councils, or charitable foundations. The Centre has also attracted a notable concentration of postgraduate research students.

Projects

Current projects

  • Environmental NGOs and environmental movements in challenging times (with Dr Nathalie Berny, Sciences Po, Bordeaux)
  • Contention over fracking (with Dr Matthew Ogilvie, Canterbury Christ Church University)
  • Contention over renewable energy infrastructure (with Dr Matthew Ogilvie, Canterbury Christ Church University)
  • Impacts of environmental movements (with Dr Eugene Nulman, Birmingham City University)

Major completed projects

  • Caught in the Act of Protest: Contextualising Contestation (CCC), with Clare Saunders (University of Exeter), part of a European Science Foundation project on street demonstrations co-ordinated by Bert Klandermans, Free University of Amsterdam. Kent contribution funded by ESRC.
  • Democracy in Europe and the Mobilization of Society (DEMOS), part of FP6 STREP project, a 7-national comparative project funded by European Commission DG Research and coordinated by Donatella della Porta, European University Institute.
  • Transformation of Environmental Activism (the TEA project), a comparative study (EC funded) of the changing nature of environmental activism in eight European countries.
  • Burning Issues: the politics of waste incineration. This grew out of the PEM project, a comparative study (EC-funded) of the role of environmental movements in the politics of waste management.

A major part of the output of the Centre has been in the form of PhD theses.

Research

Recent PhDs include:

  • Clare Saunders - Dynamics of interaction in London's local environmental networks
  • Baris Baykan - The ‘Big Tomato’ anti-GM campaign in Turkey.
  • Stephan Price - How the environmental movement influenced climate change debates and action in Britain between 1987 and 2008.
  • Matthew Ogilvie - Mobilising opposition to wind farms: a social movement perspective.
  • Steven Hendry - It’s what we do: Notions of effectiveness in local environmental groups
  • Eugene Nulman - The Policy Impact of Climate Change Activism in the UK – PhD 2014.
  • Nikos Sotirakopoulos - The influence of lifestyle anarchism on radical grassroots movements: the case of the protest camps.
  • Emmanuel Nii Noi Osuteye - Environmentalism in Ghana: the rise of environmental consciousness and movements for nature protection.
  • Pranav Bihari - Encouraging Environmentally Sustainable Food Consumption: Limitations, Potential and Possibilities of Community-Based Consumer Co-ops

We have a good record of attracting ESRC-funded students and supervising them to successful completion, and we are often able to offer highly qualified research students assistance in the form of studentships, full or partial fees bursaries and / or teaching assistantships.

Contact

Professor Christopher Rootes
Centre for the Study of Social and Political Movements,
School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research
Cornwallis Building
University of Kent,
Canterbury,
Kent CT2 7NF

Telephone: 01227 823374
Fax: 01227 824014
Email: C.A.Rootes@kent.ac.uk

Telephone: +44(0)1227 823072 Fax: +44(0)1227 827005 or email us

SSPSSR, Faculty of Social Sciences, Cornwallis North East, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent CT2 7NF

Last Updated: 26/07/2016