The Manchester Centre for Youth Studies Team:
Dr Hannah Smithson, Reader in Criminology
Head of MCYS
I have worked within the field of criminology for over 15 years and ensure real-world relevance and impact for all research I conduct. I work collaboratively with a host of local, national and international communities/stakeholders. The majority of my work involves engagement with a number of communities in and outside of the university, including professionals, activists and the Third Sector. I have directed projects funded by the YJB, ESRC, AHRC, local authorities, police forces and charities. My research has been instrumental in shaping agendas in research and policy across three interconnected areas: Youth Justice, Youth Gangs and Community Safety and Crime prevention. Young people’s participation is at the heart of the research I carry out and I am committed to developing research methods that enable this.
Professor Melanie Tebbutt, Professor in History
Associate Head of MCYS
Melanie has written widely on British social and cultural history in works which include the history of pawnbroking and working-class credit, women’s social networks, gossip and leisure in working-class communities and regional identities. Her research in the last decade has turned to focus on the history of childhood and youth. Her most recent monograph, Being Boys: Youth, Leisure and Identity in the Inter-War Years, published by Manchester University Press, received funding from both the AHRC and British Academy.
Dr Rob Drummond, Senior Lecturer in Linguistics
Associate Head of MCYS
Rob is a sociolinguist who is interested in the language of young people who live in urban environments. His current project, funded by The Leverhulme Trust, explores the ways in which young people enact identities through language and other social practices. Rob has a background in sociophonetics and dialect acquisition, and prior to becoming involved in working with young people his research looked at sociolinguistic variation in a second language, exploring social reasons behind the acquisition of local speech features in the language of Polish people living in Manchester. Rob was awarded his PhD from the University of Manchester, where he worked for several years before joining MMU in 2010.
Richard McHugh, Research Assistant, MCYS
Richard has worked in youth justice, youth and community work and education for 16 years. His experiences ranges from youth justice prevention, adult resettlement through to teaching on youth and community and education studies within higher education programmes. In recent years Richard has been working on his ongoing Doctoral study focusing on how education may take place within groups that are commonly described as ‘gangs’, with a specific focus on the role that social space may have within such educative processes.
Richard’s other research interests relate to informal educative practices and processes within groups that are identified or identify their self as being ‘outsiders’, as well as risk within research and researcher positionality.