Social Sciences Postgraduate Programmes

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Postgraduate programmes from Social Sciences which includes the divisions of Politics and International Relations, Economics, Sociology and Social Policy, Social Statistics and Demography and Ageing/Gerontology

Text of Social Sciences Postgraduate Programmes

  • Social Sciences Postgraduate Programmes 2012

    Tackling global challenges.

  • 2Welcome to Social SciencesOur internationally respected academics work across the social science disciplines to engage with the most pressing problems facing society today. We live in a rapidly changing world. Postgraduate study at Southampton offers world-leading research centres, state-of-the-art resources and the opportunity to conduct research that has social and economic impact.

    As a postgraduate student, you will be part of world-changing research as it happens. You can expect to be taught by researchers at the forefront of their disciplines, tackling some of todays global challenges. What can policymakers do to improve the wellbeing of older people? What are the implications of high population growth, climate change and economic uncertainty? How will technology impact on our working lives in the future? How can we tackle poverty?

    As one of the top 75 universities in the world* and a founder member of the prestigious Russell Group of leading research universities in the UK, we provide an outstanding postgraduate education. Southampton is one of the leading entrepreneurial universities in the world, with excellent relationships with business and industry. In Social Sciences we have established enterprise partnerships and consultancies with governments, NGOs, agencies and businesses worldwide. As a postgraduate student, you will benefit from these strong links and have many opportunities to develop your own entrepreneurial skills.

    You will have a warm welcome when you join our friendly postgraduate community. With access to our Students Union, Staff Social Club and state-of-the-art sports centre, all based on an attractive green campus, you have all the ingredients for a fantastic student experience.

    *2011 QS World University League Rankings



  • 31. Research excellence Our online interactive map of maternal health is helping to prevent unnecessary deaths in childbirth Page 4

    2. Research and learning Our research is world-class and addresses many global challenges Page 8

    3. Our academics Our academics interests are wide-ranging, reflecting all areas of the social sciences relevant to todays world Page 10

    4. Planning your career Social scientists are in demand more than ever before Page 14

    5. Southampton and region Southampton is a vibrant, modern city surrounded by beautiful countryside Page 18

    In this brochure Learning environment 12

    Student life 16

    Programme overview 20

    Programme information 22

    Applying and funding 40

    International postgraduates 41

    How to get here 42

    Find out more 43




  • Preventing death in childbirth.Atlas of Birth influences world leaders

    Our researchers are constructing an interactive world map which gives stark facts about the health of women during pregnancy, childbirth and the weeks following birth.

    Professor Zo Matthews and Dr Sarah Neal are collaborating with the White Ribbon Alliance for Safe Motherhood and the University of Aberdeen on the Atlas of Birth project, which includes the map, a short film and publications.

    Zo explains: We are using data from the UN and WHO to give a comprehensive picture of maternal health from around the world. Our easy-to-use online map reveals one of the greatest opportunities of our time to prevent the unnecessary maternal deaths that happen every single minute of every day.

    Latest figures from WHO show that more than 99 per cent of maternal deaths occur in developing countries. Two thirds of women in the poorest countries deliver without a midwife or health worker. Women often become mothers at a very young age, experience many closely spaced births and have a one in 11 chance of dying in childbirth during their lifetimes.

    The Atlas of Birth enables advocates worldwide to lobby governments and influence policymakers to end the tragic and almost always preventable deaths in childbirth.

  • Southampton social scientists brought together academics, policymakers, teachers and young people in 2011 to debate what the birth of the seven billionth person means for the world and the challenges we face as the global population continues to grow.

    The debate was organised by the ESRC Centre for Population Change (CPC), the UKs first research centre on population change, based at the University of Southampton and National Records of Scotland. Southamptons Head of Social Sciences and CPC Director, Jane Falkingham, said: This landmark population figure brings into focus a whole series of questions about what we need to address globally in the face of a growing, diverse and ageing population: questions about food security, energy needs and social care.

    The CPC is at the cutting-edge of demographic research, bringing together over 30 academics and associates from many different disciplines. Understanding the drivers and implications of population change is essential if we are to develop appropriate policy responses. The centre conducts innovative, cutting-edge research in areas such as the dynamics of fertility and family formation, modelling population growth, living arrangements across the life course, and the demographic and socio-economic implications of migration.

    Addressing global challenges. World population reaches seven billion

  • Our world-class centres are valued for the quality of their research and for actively addressing a range of global challenges.

    Research and learning

  • 9Social Sciences at Southampton has a tradition of first-class teaching and research. The most recent RAE gave our research excellent ratings, with more than 50 per cent judged to be internationally excellent (3*) or world-leading (4*).

    Collaboration and innovationDr Sabu Padmadas, Co-Director of Centre for Global Health, Population, Poverty and Policy (GHP3), manages several important international research projects as well as teaching a number of demographic and statistics modules including Population and Health.

    Since 2003, Sabu has been involved in evaluating a reproductive health intervention programme in China, funded by the United Nations Population Fund, with the aim of removing birth targets and promoting informed choice. He is also working with a large global network of researchers on an ESRC-funded project looking at healthcare inequalities in Brazil and India. Much of Sabus research is dependent on collaboration with colleagues from China, India, Brazil and Africa.

    Sabu is also leading an interdisciplinary team developing a new module, Global Health, as part of Southamptons innovative Curriculum Innovation Programme (CIP). He says of CIP: There are a lot of interdependencies and overlap around the world in terms of issues and needs. CIP attempts to address this. We want to open windows to the outside world for students and prepare them for the global society in which they live. This is about preparing our future leaders. In 2010, Sabu received a Vice-Chancellors Teaching Award, having been nominated by his students.

    Strengthening research in developing countriesNyovani Madise was the first Director of the Centre for AIDS Research and now directs Southamptons Centre for Global Health, Population, Poverty and Policy (GHP3). She continues to carry out cutting-edge research on child survival, nutrition, HIV/AIDS and the use of contraceptives in sub-saharan Africa.

    Nyovani is currently working on a large research programme on linkages between urbanisation, poverty and health in Africa. Her particular interests are in strengthening research capacity in developing countries and in working with policymakers to effect change. She has advised UNAIDS, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and the Botswana government.

    A number of years ago, Nyovani studied for the MSc Social Statistics at Southampton. She says: The combination of social and statistics appealed to my statistical background and to my desire to do something good for humankind. The one-year duration of the course was also an important consideration. At that time I wanted to spend as little time in England as possible because I had heard of stuff called snow!

    Understanding street protestsClare Saunders is leading the ESRC-funded UK team on the Caught in the Act of Protest project, which is aiming to understand who takes part in large-scale street demonstrations and why. With partners in Belgium, the Czech Republic, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland, Clare is creating the worlds largest database of the biographical characteristics and attitudes of protesters.

    The number of people who have participated in protest at some point in their lives continues to rise. Indeed, protest is no longer viewed as an unconventional means for demanding political change. Yet, until now, no one has systematically studied protest by surveying protesters as they engage in the act of protest. How people mobilise for protest therefore remains poorly understood and systematic comparative analysis has until now been impossible.

    The researchers, based in universities across Europe, are conducting a comparative study of demonstrations in several European countries and investigating the impact of particular social and political contexts on who participates and for what reasons. Clare says: The most important feature of our research is our standardised approach to surveying people as they participate in protest. We have robust measures for assessing response bias and ensuring random sampling. Our common theoretical framework and standardised survey met