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Michael Donnelly

Lecturer, Department of Education, University of Bath

Prior to joining the University of Bath, I was based at the University of Sheffield, and before that Cardiff University (where I gained my PhD). My research interests are broad and I take an interdisciplinary approach, in particular drawing on theories and ideas from education, human geography, and sociology. I am particularly interested in developing new innovative approaches to combining quantitative and qualitative methods.

I am currently developing work around the geographies of higher education, and in particular the geographical movements of young people for their university study. I have been awarded an ESRC Future Research Leader award to undertake a three year programme of research addressing the links between social and spatial (im)mobilities in the UK. The project explores the significance of place in young people’s lives and future trajectories through a detailed geographical mapping of their higher education choices.

My PhD research (funded by the ESRC) was a quantitatively framed, qualitative study, which examined the relationship between schools and the shaping of young people’s university choices. This work involved developing a new approach to researching school effects, drawing on and combining insights from school effectiveness research and the sociology of education.


  • –present
    Lecturer, Department of Education, University of Bath