Professor Barry Percy-Smith is Director of the Centre for Applied Childhood, Youth and Family Research in the School of Human and Health Sciences, University of Huddersfield.
I joined the University in April 2014 as Director of the Centre for Applied Childhood, Youth and Family Research (formerly the Centre for Applied Childhood Studies). Prior to that, for the last 12 years I worked at the University of West England (UWE), Bristol, initially with the SOLAR Action Research Centre - a specialist participatory research and development centre – and latterly with the Centre for Understanding Social Practice. I have been involved in a whole range of different projects the majority of which have been evaluations of children and family programmes.
I completed my doctorate in 1999 which concerned how children use their local environment and implications for planning, conducted as part of the UNESCO supported Growing up in Cities project. In 1999 I joined the SOLAR Action Research Centre – a specialised participatory research and development centre pioneering new forms of learning and change in organisations and communities – and moved to the University of the West of England in 2001.
Research Expertise and Interests:
Participation of children and young people in research and decision making - but also issues of agency and empowerment and developing discourses of children’s participation as active citizenship
Participatory Action Research
Action inquiry approaches to service evaluation and improvement across the public sector
Developing effective multi agency working / integrated children, youth and family services
Understanding and supporting youth transitions (especially concerning marginalized young people/NEETs etc)
In-depth qualitative inquiry including the use of visual approaches to understand young people’s realities and experiences
Facilitating practice based learning and innovation in organisations
Using learning to support workforce and service development
Facilitation of Knowledge cafes and 'Open space' technology