|Intro | Research |Publications | About|
I always enjoy nosing at the personal, non-academic, profiles academics place on their webpages, so thought I'd add my own.
I'm originally from Birkenhead in the North West of England. This is part of the Wirral, a diverse and interesting penisular which borders the River Dee (and, therefore, north Wales), the River Mersey (and, th, erefore, Liverpool) and the Irish Sea. The towns and villages of the Wirral range from gritty urbanism to idyllic country villages.
My first degree was in English Literature from Teesside University. After asking the question what do you do with a B.A. in English, I eventually ended up becoming a social researcher, firstly as a volunteer with Wirral Green Alliance, and then with Directory of Social Change (DSC). These jobs were more about data collection than data analysis and stimulated a desire to address social problems. I embarked on a Msc in Social Research Methods with the Open University. After 4 years of studying part-time, whilst holding a full-time job, I used this qualification to embark on a PhD at the University of Manchester, as part of the ESRC Centre for Research on Socio-Cultural Research (CRESC).
My PhD utilised social network analysis, a methodology I grew to love. I completed within three years and was award an ESRC postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Stirling. This was one-year of funding in December 2008. I've been hanging around there ever since on different projects.
Outside of academia, my main hobby is running. I've completed two marathons thus far (London 2007, and Rotherdam 2008). My next goal is the 2013 London Marathon. This will be my first marathon after a prolonged injury and I can't wait to get back into it. I'm a member of two running clubs: Birkenhead AC in my hometown; and < a href="http://www.strathearnharriers.org.uk/">Strathearn Harriers where I live.
I'm a big sports fan in general. My favourite side are my local football side, Tranmere Rovers. I follow English football (more interested in the Football League than the Premiership), Formula One, snooker and cricket (Freddy Flintoff and Michael Atherton are my cricketing heroes, to give a clue to which county I support). I love watching athletics as well and find watching the marathon (and learning more about the city) is the highlight of any TV coverage of a sporting championship.
My ultimate goal in life is to be mentioned on The Big Bang Theory.