Skip navigation



Links with user communities and policy makers has always been integral to our work in social work and social policy at Northumbria. We have submitted six impact case studies to REF 2021 which draw upon our expertise in gendered violence and domestic abuse, crime and policing, transnational organised crime and UK social policy in relation to disadvantage and social exclusion and which also demonstrate the non-academic impact of our research. Our work directly intervenes within some of the most pressing social, cultural and policy issues within contemporary society at a sub-national, national and global level. 

Our six submitted case studies are: 

Improving policing of domestic abuse through enhancing multi-agency coordination 

Pam Davies’ research on uncovering, understanding and communicating the multi-faceted and interwoven elements of victimisation in gender-based violence which has directly led to the Domestic Abuse Whole Systems Approach (DAWSA) being adopted by multiple UK police forces – Northumbria, Cleveland, Durham, North Yorkshire, West Yorkshire and Humberside. The research has also informed the most recent Domestic Abuse Bill currently proceeding through parliament to become law. 

Mitigating holiday hunger: increasing the funding, scale, and operation of holiday clubs for disadvantaged children 

Greta Defeyter and Paul Stretesky’s research on ‘holiday hunger’ which has directly influenced the development and expansion of the UK government’s Holiday Activities and Food Programme (HAF) and the allocation of £20,400,000 by the Department for Education (DfE) to provide healthy food and enriching activities for 1.1 million disadvantaged children. This research has also directly shaped both the UK government’s response, via the DfE and the Cabinet Office, for food security during the COVID-19 pandemic and the ‘Rashford Campaign’.

Find out more

Our research into food insecurity and holiday hunger from Northumbria University on Vimeo.

Girl-Kind: Collaboration in mediamaking as a catalyst for the expression and celebration of girlhood in disadvantaged communities 

The work of Sarah Ralph into the representation of girls in media culture which has led to the creation and development of Girl-Kind, a creative programme utilising media-making to advance self-worth and well-being among young women (aged 11–16) from disadvantaged backgrounds in the North East of England. Girl-Kind has then directly shaped the national policies of Plan International UK, and the Young Women’s Film Academy. Read more 

Related news

What it’s like growing up as a girl in the north of England 

Creating the Borderlands Initiative: political innovation driving economic development on the Anglo-Scottish Border 

Keith Shaw’s work which identified and created The Borderlands Initiative, a new political and institutional space for economic intervention across the English-Scottish border. Working in partnership with local authorities (e.g., Northumberland, Dumfries and Galloway, Carlisle and Cumbria), local MPs, the UK and Scottish governments, Shaw’s research has led directly to the £394 million 2019 Borderlands Inclusive Growth Deal. Read more

Related news

Borderlands Initiative Progresses 

Supporting reduced reoffending rates by young offenders through employment: The Skill Mill approach 

Sarah Soppitt’s research on the use of work as an agent of social integration, recovery and desistance from crime, via The Skill Mill, which has directly influenced youth justice policy across 10 UK cities and three major European countries.  

Protecting the non-human through green criminology: changing policy and practice at the national and international levels to tackle animal welfare, trafficking, and corruption

Tanya Wyatt’s work on wildlife trafficking and animal trading which has directly influenced both national (e.g., UK government, Scottish government and UK Charity) international (e.g., EU and WWF) policy. Read more

Related news

Life on Land - Dr Tanya Wyatt from Northumbria University on Vimeo.

These case studies are not exhaustive of the significant impact work within social work and social policy at Northumbria. Research impact is embedded throughout all of our work within the Unit. 

To read all impact case studies in full, please click here.

Back to top