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About Me

Since 2012, I have been a lecturer at Sheffield Hallam University in the UK. My research focuses on the charity sector, in its many different guises and varying ways. I'm particularly interested in how the charity sector doesn't always work: how it can be unequal, and unfair, and the site of discrimination and harm. What should be (and is usually) a joyous site of people coming together to help others, or of solemn hard work, can often be space used by certain people to get ahead, or a site of violence. This inequality takes place along demographic (e.g. gender, class, or racial lines) but also in terms of politics, power, and symbolic reputation or prestige. 

I'm also very interested in youth volunteering, both in terms of inequalities, but also what young people get out of volunteering, and why wider society seems so obsessed with young people's participation in certain ways. I've also written about fundraising ethics, homelessness, voluntary sector policy, and social media. Research methodology is also a core concern in my writing, especially how we balance the researcher as subjective participant and detached observer within qualitative researcher. I've conducted various experiments into researcher positionality and the reflexive process, and providing researchers with a guide as to how to actually do this was the subject of my first book.

You can find a list of my various academic books, reports, and articles on the Publications page.  You can access my academic CV from March 2023 here

I teach students across undergraduate, masters, and doctoral levels, on subjects like introduction to politics and sociology, the sociology of youth, research methods, and research ethics. With colleagues, I'm currently working with some great PhD students, as they complete detailed work on UK school inequalities and how hierarchies occur in groups that claim to be non-hierarchical. 

I'm currently lucky enough to serve as Chair of the Voluntary Sector Studies Network, the UK-based body for researchers in the field of charity, volunteering, and the voluntary sector. Check out the amazing work our charity does, including our conferences and day seminars. 

Closer to home I'm a big fan of Wolves, the England Cricket team (well, the Test team), and the work of Terry Pratchett. I live in Sheffield, with my wife and daughter, and cat Oscar, who is a menace. 

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