News involving staff in the Department of Methodology

Female researchers add their superiors as authors

Methodology Fellow Daniele Fanelli was quoted in this article in Nature Index. Click here for the full article. December 2017.

Jouni Kuha awarded Special Recognition Award

Dr Jouni Kuha has been awarded the Political Studies Association Special Recognition Award for 2017, as a member of the academic team for the BBC/ITV/Sky joint exit poll for the 2017 General Election (together with John Curtice, Patrick English, Stephen Fisher, Rob Ford, Jonathan Mellon, Roger Mortimore, Colin Rallings, and Michael Thrasher). The PSA panel of expert judges commented that the members of the exit poll team “deserve recognition for their wide range of academic skills and the methodology used as well as the subsequent analysis of the forecast, which had an immense impact during election night”.

You can see a list of the PSA award winners here. For a description of the exit poll methodology, please see here.  December 2017.

Alasdair Jones receives International Visitor Exchange Scheme Award

The National Centre for Research Methods (NCRM) has announced its 2017/2018 International Visitor Exchange Scheme Awards, of which the Department of Methodology's Dr Alasdair Jones is a recipient. He will be visiting Associate Professor Jennifer Curti and Professor Peter Davis (University of Auckland) to review and synthesise  the uses and applications of qualitative research methods in policy evaluations using observational designs. August 2017.

Chana Teeger receives award from the American Sociological Association

Chana Teeger's American Sociological Review article, "'Both Sides of the Story': History Education in Post-Apartheid South Africa," has received the 2017 Recent Contributions Award from the American Sociological Association's Emotions Section and an honorable mention from the Culture Section's Clifford Geertz Best Article Award committee. A summary of the article can be found here. August 2017.

Department of Methodology staff develop the only polling model to predict a hung parliament

The Department of Methodology's Dr Ben Lauderdale and Dr Jack Blumenau were part of the team at YouGov which devised the only model which correctly predicted a hung parliament.

Professor Jouni Kuha, who is in both the Department of Methodology and the Department of Statistics, was also part of the team which analysed the exit polls on election day. Click here for the full storyJune 2017.

Professor Jonathan Jackson gives evidence to Commission on State Fragility

Professor Jonathan Jackson gave evidence on 8 June 2017 to the Commission on State Fragility, Growth and Development, which was held at the Blavatnik School of Government at the University of Oxford. The Commission is chaired by former UK prime minister, David Cameron. Professor Jackson summarised his work into the importance of legitimacy in the context of criminal justice. June 2017.

Audrey Alejandro speaks on "Unpacking the Eurocentrism of 'IR's Western dominance narrative" at the Department of Politics, University of Sheffield

Inspired by the theory of power-knowledge, post-colonialism or neo-gramscianism, scholars of International Relations have emphasised how the Eurocentrism of this discipline participated to the construction of the global – colonial and postcolonial – order. Discourses have thus represented a key concern for critical scholars, based on their capacity to perform the identities and visions of the world that inform decision-making. The literature emphasises two means through which “Western” scholarship imposes its Eurocentrism to IR discursive production: the naturalisation of European history, concepts and values within IR, and the control of IR international means of communication through Eurocentric gate-keeping practices to publication. To address these challenges, critical scholars have stressed the need to practice reflexivity. If academic dominance rests on the implicit dynamics underlying academia, then reflexivity – the practice of making conscious and explicit our own practices – offers helpful resources. However, thirty years after the emergence of this promising agenda in IR, numerous authors question the reality of the “reflexive turn”. Worse, by not making explicit the ways they themselves implemented reflexivity in order not to reproduce the discriminative practices dominant in the field, critical scholars are suspected of reproducing the Eurocentrism they denounce.

The aim of this presentation was to address this doubt by empirically deconstructing the assumptions supporting the consensual “narrative of Western dominance”. Based on the historical sociology of the construction and internationalisation of IR in Brazil and India, it offers a decentred perspective enabling us to reflexively assess the participation of this discourse (for some, our discourse) to the Eurocentrism it denounces. 10 May 2017.

Is Russia hacking democracy?

In this article in the New Statesman, the Department of Methodology's Dr Ellie Knott (pictured, Fellow in Qualitative Methods) discusses what destabilising powers Putin's regime really has - and focus should be on where Russia is really misbehaving, as opposed to where it is not. Click here to read the full articleJanuary 2017.


Older news

Alasdair Jones to speak at the RCA

Alasdair Jones will be speaking at the final conference of the EU Marie Curie research project ‘TRADERS: Training Art and Design Researchers for Participation in Public Space.’  The conference – entitled MEDIATIONS: Art & Design Agency and Participation in Public Space – will be taking place at the Royal College of Art, London (21-22 November 2016).  At the conference Alasdair will be speaking about the curation of public space on London’s South Bank.  If you are interested in attending the conference you can register for it hereOctober 2016.

Alasdair Jones to speak at UC Berkeley Symposium

Assistant Professor Alasdair Jones is to speak at an upcoming UC Berkeley Symposium, Innovations in Ethnographic Methodology, on Friday 4 March 2016.

Alasdair will deliver a talk titled Revisiting Bott to Connect the Dots: Using Participant Observation as a Means to Collect Data Amenable to Social Network Analysis.  Details about the event can be found on the UC Berkeley CER website and the event Facebook page.

If voting were mandatory, the U.S. would shift to the left. Discuss.

This article by Dr Dominik Hangartner appeared in The Washington Post10 December 2015.

Dr Flora Cornish speaks at keynote debate

Dr Flora Cornish, Department of Methodology, spoke in a keynote debate on measurement at the Development Studies Association of Ireland annual conference in Dublin on Thursday 19 November. She argued that the evidence paradigm is producing misuses of social scientific research in the service of policy and donor interests, drawing on her recent paper on systematic reviews, published in Anthropology & Medicine. November 2015.

The power of the passport - Should governments make it easier for migrants to take up citizenship? There are tangible benefits, says Dr Dominik Hangartner of the Department of Methodology, whose research finds that naturalisation acts as a catalyst for social and political integration.

In September 2015, the European Union (EU) agreed a quota system to distribute the 120,000 refugees currently located in Italy, Greece and Hungary; with large numbers of refugees continuing to cross the Mediterranean from Africa and the Middle East in search of a new life, mass migration looks set to be one of the defining issues of European politics this decade. But how can governments support their new residents to assimilate quickly? A new study by Dr Dominik Hangartner suggests that citizenship might be the answer, finding that naturalisation increases integration, thereby offering a route for policymakers to strengthen migrants’ social and political bonds with their adopted nations. Read more... November 2015.

Department of Methodology researcher awarded Philip Leverhulme prize
Dr Dominik Hangartner has been awarded a Philip Leverhulme Prize in 2015. The £100,000 prize, awarded to outstanding young scholars of high potential, is to be spent on activities to promote the winners’ future research.

Dominik said: "I feel very humbled and privileged to have been awarded this prize and to join past and present recipients who I have long admired and respected. The very generous prize sum will catalyse my recent research projects focusing on the effects of asylum policies on long-term integration of refugees.” Read more... November 2015.

LSE Methodology paper published in 20th Anniversary Special Issue of 'Evaluation'

The Department of Methodology's Alasdair Jones has had a paper published in the 20th Anniversary Special Issue of the journal 'Evaluation: The International Journal of  Theory, Research and Practice.' Please see the Thinking Methods blog post for further details. October 2015.

Communicating Chronic Pain in the media

Jen Tarr spoke about the Communicating Chronic Pain project in the BBC Radio 4 programme The Problem of Pain - A Slow Motion Catastrophe. In the broadcast of 15 July 2015, she offers insight into the importance of community on pain management. Available to listen hereJuly 2015.

Department of Methodology research in the news

Can text mining help handle the data deluge in public policy analysis?

Governments are lagging behind when it comes to exploiting the advantages of text mining to handle and analyze the large quantities of text that result from large-scale e-consultations. In their paper “Coping with the Cornucopia: Can Text Mining Help Handle the Data Deluge in Public Policy Analysis?” Aude Bicquelet (LSE Methodology) and Albert Weale (UCL) analyze a public consultation on end-of-life medicines to evaluate the benefits of text mining for the analysis of online public consultations, weighing the benefits of increased automation against the potential risks.

Department of Methodology research in the news

Is diversity good or bad for community cohesion?

The effect of ethnic diversity on communities has become a hot topic. Many academics and policy makers believe that ethnically diverse communities are characterised by distrust and low levels of social cohesion, while numerous studies show an apparent negative link between the ethnic diversity of local communities and the extent to which residents express trust in, and a sense of cohesion with, one another. A new article 'Ethnic diversity, segregation and the social cohesion of neighbourhoods in London' by Patrick Sturgis (NCRM, Univ. Southampton), Ian Brunton-Smith (University of Surrey), Jouni Kuha (LSE) and Jonathan Jackson (LSE), published in Ethnic and Racial Studies journal, shows a different and more complex picture.