Emerging and New Researchers in the Geographies of Health and Impairment 2019, University of Exeter

The Emerging and New Researchers in the Geographies of Health and Impairment conference is just over a month away! We invite and encourage PGRs and ECRs to attend! Please see below for some updates to the conference programme and the details for registering.
The draft programme for ENRGHI 2019 is now live! It is available to access on the website, along with full details of abstracts.
Registration is £50 and closes in June. Please click here to register.
Registration fee includes:
  • Keynote speeches from established academics in health geographies
  • Exciting workshops to develop key skills for ECRs and PGRs
  • A conference meal at Harry’s Restaurant in Exeter on the Monday evening
  • Lunches and refreshments throughout the conference
Please get in contact if you require any more information or have any questions.
Best wishes,
ENRGHI committee

Health and inequalities in an era of crises, University of Edinburgh

You are warmly invited to a one-day symposium on health and inequalities in an era of crises (details below). Registration is free, but places are limited – so please sign up via  https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/one-day-symposium-health-and-inequalities-in-an-era-of-crises-tickets-60257344339 if you would like to attend.

Date: Thursday 13 June 2019

Time: 10am (registration from 9.30am) – 4.30pm

Venue: University of Edinburgh – Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovation

The past decade has seen widespread political and social upheaval, with the global economic recession heralding a period of austerity, heightened tensions over immigration, and the rise of right-wing populism in many countries. These changes highlight the complex relationship between inequalities, social cohesion and the political economy of health. This one-day symposium is an opportunity to explore the implications of the ‘era of crises’ for health and inequalities – including discussion of the following questions:

  • What are the implications of the changing political landscape for social cohesion, inequalities and health?
  • Are changing labour market patterns affecting mental health, and are some communities more vulnerable to these changes than others?
  • How is the rise of populism linked with representations of social identity and community?
  • To what extent does the concept of social capital help us understand the relationship between macro-social changes, inequalities and health?

Confirmed speakers include:

  • Professor Kate Pickett (York and co-author of the ‘Spirit Level’)
  • Professor Ichiro Kawachi (Harvard)
  • Dr Ben Hawkins (LSHTM)
  • Professor Jamie Pearce (Edinburgh)
  • Dr Gerry McCartney (NHS Scotland)

The symposium will include both international and UK speakers, and is open to researchers, policymakers and advocates.

Jamie Pearce

Professor of Health Geography

School of GeoSciences

University of Edinburgh

Edinburgh EH8 9XP

Tel: + 44 131 650 2294

GHWRG Hack Day: Doing sensitive participatory research in times of austerity, London

You are warmly invited to a half-day ‘Hack Day’ on doing sensitive participatory research with people at the margins in times of austerity (details below).

Registration is £20, and places are limited – so please sign up soon if you would like to attend:


GHWRG Hack Day: Doing sensitive participatory research in times of austerity

Date: Friday 28 June 2019

Time: 12.30pm (lunch and registration) – 5.00pm

Venue: Lowther Room, Royal Geographical Society (with IBG), 1 Kensington Gore, London

A hack day is designed to get people together in a room to discuss the nuts and bolts of a particular issue, to share the lessons already learnt, to suggest ways to take a different track, and to facilitate the creation of ideas to resolve the issue.

For the purposes of this event, the focus of the hack day is on discussing the challenges of, and lessons and ideas to be learnt from, how we carry out sensitive participatory research into everyday austerities and the ethical implications of researching in austere conditions via a ‘hack approach’.

Despite government proclamations that ‘austerity is over’, the funding climate and the everyday effects of austerity continue to live on. During this time, geographers have sought to develop more participatory methods to involve and find out more about the lives of people at the harsh end of the cuts, including individuals and families living in poverty, those ‘getting by’ on welfare benefits, and those living with ill-health and impairment whilst using health and social care services.

Given participatory methodologies seek to engage participants in more depth throughout the research process, a series of tensions can emerge that researchers must grapple with – e.g. recompensing participants, managing vulnerable relationships whilst deepening levels of engagement, and facilitating the creation of shared knowledge.  These tensions are compounded by having to encounter more closely the inequalities, vulnerabilities, and challenging contexts that can destabilize participants’s lives. By encountering these tensions more closely, researchers must work through difficult practical issues and delicate ethical questions whilst carefully managing conversations about the impact of the research.  Over an afternoon, we will take stock of current participatory research on austerity in geographies of health and wellbeing and consider where it is heading.

This half-day ‘hack day’ is an opportunity to explore through a series of papers and discussant-led dialogues these challenges and lessons – including discussion of the following questions:

  • What are the implications of the austerity landscape for the viability and practicability of sensitive participatory research?
  • Are changing labour market patterns, and cutbacks to services making some research communities more vulnerable and eroding their ability to engage more in-depth with researchers?
  • How is the rise of anti-welfare populist rhetoric and stigmatisation affecting the ability of researchers to bring about major positive change with the communities they seek to study?
  • To what extent does the context of austerity shape the meaning and theoretical underpinnings of sensitive participatory methodology?

Confirmed speakers include:

  • Dr Louise Holt (Reader, University of Loughborough)
  • Sarah Marie-Hall (Senior Lecturer in Human Geography and Morgan Centre Member, University of Manchester)
  • Dr Andrew Power (Associate Professor, University of Southampton)

The HackDay is open to researchers from both within and outside geography, as well as advocates and representatives of health or social care organisations. The event will be followed by drinks afterwards in a nearby pub.





Call for papers: ENRGHI 2019, 17th – 18th June, University of Exeter

Reblogged from ENRGHI


Call for Papers: Emerging and New Researchers in the Geographies of Health and Impairment (ENRGHI) Conference 2019

Theme: Cultures of health and wellbeing

Papers are invited for 20th ENRGHI Conference, a two-day event organised by and for post-graduates and early career researchers, with generous support from the RGS (with IBG) Geographies of Health and Wellbeing Research Group (GHWRG) and the Wellcome Centre Cultures and Environments of Health. This longstanding conference offers a supportive environment to showcase research; providing valuable opportunities for networking, research feedback and discussion with researchers and students who have a shared interest in geographies of health, wellbeing, and impairment.

Attracting an international audience, the conference welcomes abstracts from individuals involved in health or wellbeing research within social, geographical, and/or environmental contexts. We invite submissions from both those working within and outside of geography as a discipline. The 2019 conference will take place on the 17th and 18th June 2019, hosted by theUniversity of Exeter.

Conference papers can be based on work-in-progress or completed work. PhD students are encouraged to focus on a particular study aspect, such as a specific method, a literature review, or one aspect of empirical findings, rather than trying to cover their whole project.

The scope of the conference is broad in order to reflect the diversity of topics and research approaches utilised within the field of health, wellbeing, and impairment. Topics covered in previous conferences have included:

  • Health inequalities, environmental justice, and equity
  • Therapeutic landscapes, green/blue and ‘enabling’ spaces
  • Health and wellbeing through the life course
  • Mental health, everyday life, disability, and stigma
  • Migration, mobilities, and health
  • Health-related behaviours and practices
  • Health-care delivery and access to services
  • Health, mapping, and spatial analysis
  • Health and health care in the Developing World

Additional topics of interest that fit in the theme ‘cultures of health and wellbeing’ are as follows:

  • Health technologies and media e.g. health surveillances: care and control
  • Conceptualising health and health geographies: boundaries and conflicts
  • Healthy environments and performances
  • Public engagement, what does it mean for geographies of health research?
  • Sensitive issues and ‘emotion work’ in health research/ethical issues in health research
  • PGR and ECR mental health and wellbeing
  • Creative health geographies: theatre, art, poetry
  • Interdisciplinary approaches to health
  • The mental health treatment gap and health inequalities
  • Framing disease: health and illness in modernity
  • Sickness, health and remedies since Antiquity
  • Women’s health, sex and reproduction
  • Death, grief and loss

Guidelines for Submissions

Abstracts should be no longer than 250 words. Please also provide the title, author(s), and affiliation. Oral presentations will be 10 minutes, followed by five minutes of discussion. Posters should be A0 in size and there will be designated time slots for poster presentations during the conference. Please state whether you are interested in doing a presentation, poster and/or chairing a session. Please also provide 4 keywords. Abstracts should be emailed with the subject title as ENRGHI CfP to enrghi2019@gmail.com by Friday 12th April 2019.

Prizes for the best presentations will be nominated by delegates and awarded at the end of the conference. Details of registration and fee waivers will be made available in April on the ENRGHI 2019 website: https://enrghi2019.wordpress.com/.

Post-Doctoral Opportunity: Mental Health Impacts of Climate Change, Glasgow Caledonian University. Deadline: 4th Feb.

The Centre for Climate Justice at Glasgow Caledonian University is looking for a post-doctoral researcher (one year fixed-term, with a potential for renewal subject to funding availability) to lead the Centre’s research portfolio on the mental health/psycho-social impacts of climate change. Candidates will be expected to possess specialist knowledge and expertise in psychology, social psychology, and social justice, and have research interests on the mental health impacts of climate change.

The application deadline is 4th February, 2019. More details on the position and the application process can be found at https://www.jobs.ac.uk/job/BPR662/researcher-1a

Please direct any inquiries regarding this position to climatejustice@gcu.ac.uk

CFP, RGS-IBG 2019: Whose wellbeing? The challenges of doing sensitive research

Doing research sometimes involves thinking about or performing sensitive work. These sensitivities might be methodological, emotional, practical, or emergent elsewhere. Feminist scholars make prominent arguments around reflexivity and positionality when doing fieldwork (Rose 1997; McDowell 1992; Haraway 1988). These may be especially complicated when doing sensitive research through the emotive, practical and temporal challenges this work imposes. While formal research ethics committees govern institutional care and protections of harm, the practice of doing research is often less predictable. Work which is conceived to be emotional or sensitive poses distinct challenges around wellbeing, position, reflexivity and care (Bondi, 2005; McGarrol, 2017; Darling, 2014; Laurier and Parr, 2000).

This double session aims to interrogate what it means to do sensitive research. Through a paper panel followed by a workshop, it intends to open up discussion around experiences of doing work which, at times, may be difficult, sensitive or pose unexpected dilemmas. We welcome abstracts (max 300 words) for the opening paper panel, and abstracts for research vignettes (max 100 words) which will be presented and discussed in the workshop. These papers or vignettes may consider any aspect of performing sensitive work; these could include, but are not limited to:

  • Critical engagements around what constitutes sensitive and/or challenging research
  • Experiences of doing sensitive and/or challenging research across any topic
  • Care, well-being, positionality and reflexivity emergent in doing sensitive and/or challenging research
  • Strategies employed to manage difficult research


Please send abstracts (for papers and/or vignettes) to both Rosalie Warnock (r.e.warnock@qmul.ac.uk) or Gabrielle King (gabrielle.King@ed.ac.uk) by Tuesday 5th February. Decisions will be given by Friday 8th February.

Session organisers: Rosalie Warnock (QMUL) and Gabrielle King (University of Edinburgh) with Professor Jo Little, (University of Exeter) as chair

CFP, RGS-IBG 2019: Hopeful, troubled or both together? New geographies of mental health and wellbeing

The decade since the publication of Hester Parr’s seminal volume Mental Health and Social Space (Parr, 2008) has been troubled, and troubling. A global recession and the rollout of austerity have contributed to worsening public mental health (Barr et al., 2015; Mattheys, 2017) and declining service provision (Gilburt, 2015; Power and Bartlett, 2018). Rates of suicide and self harm among young people have soared (Morgan et al., 2017) and antidepressant prescriptions have more than doubled in a decade (Campbell, 2017).

Yet at the same time, a stated commitment to parity of esteem for mental health in NHS (Gilburt, 2018) has been accompanied by the roll-out of the IAPTS programme, with 900,000 people per year now receiving talking therapy for anxiety and depression (NHS, 2018). Nationwide surveys report a significant decline in stigma, linked to national campaigns such as the Time For Change campaign (Evans-Lacko et al., 2014), and Heads Together.

Do these positive trends indicate ‘hopeful adaptation’ (Power et al., 2018) to straitened times? Or are they only masking the emergence of ‘less-than-human geographies’ (Philo, 2017) of doubt and despair in a neoliberal world? This session sets out to ask how the geography of mental health and wellbeing should respond to these seeming contradictions, and invites papers on the following themes:

  • What are the theoretical innovations that can help us to stay with the trouble (Haraway, 2016) in troubling times?
  • How can we continue to move beyond the dualisms (mind/body, researcher/service user, hope/despair) that have long framed mental health research?
  • What role should lived experience play within our research?
  • How should we respond to growing evidence of a mental health crisis within academia itself (Grove, 2018)?

Session convenors: Chloe Asker (University of Exeter) and Ed Kiely (University of Cambridge)

Please send 250-word abstracts to emk31@cam.ac.uk and ca409@exeter.ac.uk by Friday 1st February.

We welcome proposals for non-traditional formats of presentation, such as film, audio or visual images. Please get in touch if you have any questions or would like to discuss the session further.