Southlands Methodist Trust provides grants to academics across Roehampton University’s academic departments, supporting projects which would explore areas of work that fulfil the charitable objectives of the SMT. Read about recent projects below:
2019 – 2020
Lifelong Reader: New Stories: ‘Lifelong Reading: New Stories’ investigates a new creative form of life review for older adults living with early-stage dementia. The project recognises the significance of early reading and childhood books, and explores how far such stories – and shifting memories of them – might act as a starting point for rethinking narratives of ageing identity. A children’s literature specialist (Principal Investigator), a creative writer and a book artist, will work with individuals in a care setting to co-create bespoke ‘fictional life-review books’ based on meaningful childhood stories interwoven with autobiographical fragments. These artefacts will be used by participants, their families and carers, and will represent rich data sources for understanding aspects of ageing identity via narrative and memory.
Makerspaces: Supporting digital inclusiveness in urban communities: The purpose of this research project is to investigate the extent to which Makerspaces can assist such communities through providing access to modern digital fabrication equipment (and the training to support its use), and through the support offered by Makerspaces for nascent entrepreneurs. The project will assess the role of Makerspaces in helping disenfranchised communities: empowering individuals to be creative and to be productive.
Dhaka – On Climate Change and Urbanisation in Bangladesh: This ongoing documentary project combines photography and video, exploring the effects of urbanization and climate change on Dhaka and Bangladesh. For this extension of the project, the researcher will extend the project beyond Dhaka to look at coastal areas that will be affected and Mongla, one of the cities targeted by Bangladesh’s Building Climate Resilient Migrant Friendly Towns strategy.
Religion and Spirituality in the therapeutic space: exploring how trainee and newly-qualified counsellors and psychotherapists, who identify as religious or spiritual, experience undertaking therapeutic training in the UK: Practitioner competence with regard to working with religion and spirituality issues in therapy is a matter of client well-being. However, research indicates that trainee counsellors/psychotherapists rarely discuss or receive input on religious or spiritual issues in training, and thus feel ill-equipped in this area. Building upon a previous small scale qualitative research study, this project will use a national survey to explore how trainee or newly qualified counsellors/psychotherapists, who identify as religious or spiritual, experience undertaking therapeutic training in the UK.
Narratives of masculinity: visual accounts of young men’s experience of fatherhood: This project aims to address the worrying rise of mental illness and suicide in young men aged 18 – 35 in the UK by understanding the vulnerability of men. This project innovatively examines the period when young men become fathers through a series of image-generating workshops and audio reflections, and a five to eight-minute animation, to be disseminated. The animation will visually represent new narratives that will broaden the emotional base of what it means to be a man, contributing significantly to men’s mental health and well-being.
Visioning the Future of the City Together: Group relations in urban community neighbourhood planning: The intention of this project is to explore the role of ‘vision’ and ‘visioning’ within urban neighbourhood planning processes in the wake of the turn to digital networks and social media. The project will work directly with a citizen-led community planning group that has been given authority to prepare a local land-use plan by local government. By using a psychoanalytically-underpinned consultancy approach, the intention is to directly intervene within the planning process to enable planners to better understand the different competing emotional investments that are at play in community participation and representation. The project will then serve as a working model for future consultancy work with similar groups.
Thinking Place – Five Philosophers’ Huts: This will be an exhibition of artworks and research material at the Oxford House Gallery in September 2019. The Thinking Place project explores the relationship between philosopher Martin Heidegger and the wooden building built for him at Todtnauberg in the Black Forest. It also examines Ludwig Wittgenstein’s hut at Skjolden (Norway), Norwegian philosopher Arne Naess’ two huts built at Tvergastein (Norway) and French philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s hut built for him at Ermenonville, France. The Thinking Place project investigates the relationship between architectural space, isolated geographical location, and the production of thought.
Student and staff perceptions on race and racism at the University of Roehampton: Funding will support an empirical project that investigates experiences of, and perspectives on, race and racism at the University of Roehampton. The university is actively seeking to address issues of race, including by its ‘decolonise the curriculum’ programme and RAFA2 project, yet communication about and action on these issues remains difficult. This research project will address this issue by working with students and staff in the departments of Education and Social Sciences in focus groups to develop a shared understanding of the issues involved and develop grounded solutions to the problems.
2018 – 2019
Dhaka documentary: a body of work, still photographs and short films, documenting the problems faced by climate refugees in Dhaka, including disseminating these findings internationally in the form of exhibition, online presentation, and publications. Read more about this project here.
Women imams in the “present”: data collection, research and editing of the final chapter of the recipient’s book “Women as Imams”, with a very specific focus on expressions of female ritual leadership in Islam and their link to social contexts.
Free schools and the moral purpose of education: a set of four case studies evaluating the impact of Single Academy Trust free schools in socio-economically deprived and ethnically diverse communities in meeting the needs of their students, their communities and the moral purpose of education.
Exploring the effects of a musical play intervention on young children’s self-regulation: a project exploring whether introducing musical play as an intervention in schools could have beneficial effects on children’s self-regulation.
Gospel teaching and personal finance: the project incorporates the Christian gospel into the topic of personal financial plans and structure, uncovering the role that Christianity plays in the balance between personal satisfaction and financial stability.
Service Operations Management applications in churches: a comprehensive literature review to find out how operations management might be used to reflect on church activities and how such systems have been applied by faith communities.
2017 – 2018
‘Sleuth’ – the Roehampton Journal: a new magazine that reported on the activities of Southlands College, covered events across the University community and highlighted stories from the local area.
Slavery, abolition and resistance: St Patrick’s Day and 250 years of Methodism on Montserrat: archival research was used to examine the influence of Methodism on the British Overseas Territory Montserrat.
The development of Christianity in China in the past thirty years: this project tried to shed light on Christianity in China by examining the significant effect of Christianism in interacting with traditional Chinese culture, with special attention paid to Methodist churches in China.
Promoting understanding of the work of multi-professional teams in children’s centres: the role of developmental research in tackling ‘disparate discourses’: with an interventionist research method, this project developed learning opportunities for multi-professional teams in children’s centres to develop integrated care for young children.
Signs of wonder: iconography and aesthetic practices of New Black Majority Churches (nBMCs) in the London Borough of Southwark: an investigation into visual expressions, including both iconography and also other important nBMC aesthetic practices such as architecture, websites and media products.
Encounters with otherness: a talk at a symposium in May 2017 on Media, Communication, and Film Studies Programs at Liberal Arts Colleges, in Maine, USA, which led to dialogue about how University of Roehampton’s Guerrilla Filmmaking module might be of use in an American liberal arts context.
2016 – 2017
Pilot study to test novel interactions within programmes for alcohol and drug users: a field research pilot study designed to develop treatment services to improve outcomes for alcohol and drug dependents in an out-patient treatment programme.
‘Love Across the Atlantic’ conference – an interdisciplinary conference on US-UK romance’: held at University of Roehampton in June 2017. It explored the history and enduring appeal of US-UK relationships.
The contribution of policy techniques, process and ‘performativity’ in the construction of teachings with Specific Learning Difficulties as ‘subjects’ in the English Further Education sector: exploring the experience of teachers with SpLDs and the challenges they face.
Meaning in loss therapy group for complicated grief: a UK pilot study: a pilot study based on a North American protocol and laying the groundwork for state-of-the-art bereavement theory and research
Immigration, spirituality and the arts: a project connecting social justice, spirituality, ethics and the arts in relation to lived social action, specifically contemporary ethical-pastoral responses to migration.
‘The survival of the neo-liberal-est’: keeping your best-self sane at work: a project to support and sustain teachers in their work and practice in neoliberal, high-performance school cultures, providing a space where demands are not made of them.
Grants for Project Funding
Find out more about funding for projects for those within the University of Roehampton community, and download an application form.