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Newton Fund 2015 Awards List

Newton Fund 2015 Awards List

Awards made under the Newton Advanced Fellowships and Newton Mobility Grants in 2015.

2015

Funding Source: Newton Fund under the responsibility of the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

The Newton Fund was launched in 2014 and originally consisted of £75 million each year for 5 years. In the 2015 UK Spending Review it was agreed to extend and expand the Fund. The Newton Fund was extended from 2019 to 2021 and expanded by doubling the £75 million investment to £150 million by 2021, leading to a £735 million UK investment to 2021, with partner countries providing matched resources within the Fund. These awards are funded by the Newton Fund , which is part of the UK's Official Development Assistance (ODA) commitment.

 

Newton Advanced Fellowships

 

Brazil

 

Dr Renata Narita, University of Sao Paulo

Dr Gabriella Conti, University College London

Equilibrium Labor Market Effects of Non-contributory Health Insurance: Evidence from Mexico

AF150049                                             Two-Year                                                            £40,810

Universal health coverage is intended to protect individuals against health and financial consequences of adverse health events. Not all countries provide social health insurance and this is particularly an issue in developing economies where individuals often lack resources to purchase essential healthcare. Developing countries, for example, Peru, Colombia and Mexico have implemented such system in the past decade. In 2002, Mexico introduced Seguro Popular (SP) program, a non-contributory health insurance that was directed to half of the country’s population, uncovered by social protection or employer-provided health insurances. To the extent that SP is a transfer to informal sector workers and the nonemployed, and a tax to formal sector workers, it may have changed the incentives for individuals to participate in the labor market and in which sector to work (formal or informal). Our goal is to study the impacts of SP on labor market in Mexico. We estimate a structural labor market model that allows us to address three main questions (i) How much of the increase in informality in Mexico is due to the introduction of non-contributory health insurance?, (ii) What are the components of a health insurance program that individuals value more?, and (iii) What are the welfare impacts of increases in the value of non-contributory health insurance? The model is fitted to the Mexican Employment data and used to simulate changes in welfare, employment, informality and wages of different non-contributory health insurance policies. Our results will shed light on whether and how health reforms extending coverage to individuals in the informal sector or out of the labor force can promote welfare, employment and labor formality.

 

Professor Mischel Carmen Neyra Belderrain, Instituto Tecnologico de Aeronautica – ITA

Professor Alberto Paucar-Caceres, Manchester Metropolitan University

Environmental management and sustainability in Brazil:  A multi-methodological approach to operational research.

AF150068                                             Two-Year                                                            £67,770

Application-based systemic approaches to environmental management and industries’ sustainability in developing countries is important. Most of the problems are complex and it is necessary to apply a multi-methodological approach. There are a few researchers today in Brazil and Latin America working in this specific research area. To overcome this, this project aims to develop a Framework using a multi-methodological approach firmly based on Systemic Thinking principles and operational research (OR) methods. The project contributes to knowledge expansion in management science by providing applications of holistic thinking and OR methods. Beneficiaries will be local community leaders and policy makers in Brazil. It will help to raise awareness amongst the Brazilian institutions about of the researchers’ expertise in the systems science field, which could contribute to an increased number of postgraduate and PhD students at MMU Business School.

 

Dr Sonia Fatima Schwendler, Federal University of Paraná (UFPR)

Professor Else Ribeiro Pires Vieira, Queen Mary University of London

Gender and Education in Rural Areas in Brazil

AF150000                                             Two-Year                                                            £64,457

This two-year pioneering research will contribute to social welfare in Brazil’s countryside by investigating and promoting the inclusion of gender issues in the syllabi of secondary schools in rural areas. It will consolidate the Federal University of Paraná (UFPR) as a reference in producing new knowledge through cutting-edge research on generational differences and tensions related to gender diversity and the sexual division of labour through case studies in the state of Paraná’s rural areas. It will further the internationalisation of UFPR’s research agendas by supporting early/mid-career scholars through collaborative research and reciprocal visits whilst also establishing its role in creating gender-related resources for rural schools. The consolidation of links between the research groups will ensure capacity building and longer-term improvements in research output. This project will also broaden and consolidate the applicant’s scholarship on gender studies and rural education, and introduce rural issues in UFPR’s Interdisciplinary Gender Studies Research Group.

 

Dr Mathieu Turgeon, Universidade de Brasilia

Dr Philip Habel, University of Glasgow

The Causes and Consequences of Public Opinion on Affirmative Action Policies in Brazil

AF150040                                             One-Year                                                            £36,801

The Brazilian government recently implemented public policies to reduce pervasive racial discrimination and inequalities, adopting affirmative action programmes to increase the admission of Afro-Brazilians in universities and access to public service positions. These policies have not been without controversy. Results from our pilot study conducted with over 20,000 university students demonstrate how Whites and non-Whites divide over the issue, with Whites strongly opposing such programmes and non-Whites suppressing their support. We adopted a novel survey methodology that considers the sensitivity of measuring attitudes toward affirmative action policies, allowing us to estimate both the levels of support and the causes of it. We now propose to expand the pilot study to a nationally representative sample. Our work carries important implications for policymakers and academics alike, as understanding the political attitudes of Brazilians toward affirmative action is imperative in any effort to reduce racial inequalities. Our project also provides substantial training to the Applicant.

 

Dr Lincoln P. Fernandes, Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina

Professor Michael Toolan, University of Birmingham

Brazil’s Online Parallel Corpus-based System: Translating Children´s Narrative – investigating new methodologies for translation teaching and practice.

AF150069                                             One-Year                                                            £29,654

This research project aims at exploring the interface between Stylistics/Narrative Theory and Corpus-based Translation Studies with a view to investigating the translation practices associated with specific linguistic patterns or features in children´s narratives (English-Brazilian Portuguese). To achieve that, this study relies on a parallel corpus-based system (copa-trad.ufsc.br) that provides web-based applications for analysing translated texts. Stylistics and Narrative Analysis (Toolan, 1990/2001/2009) provide the thinking tools for the interrogation of data generated from the corpus. The project aims to obtain a greater understanding of the practices involved in the translation of children´s narratives and provide future researchers with a more efficient and robust method to carry out their studies. This project is expected to assist in developing the recent disciplinary field of Translation Studies in Brazil, with clear high-impact implications for translation teaching and practice.

 

Dr Nathalie Christine Gimenes Sanches, University of Sao Paulo

Professor Emmanuel Guerre, Queen Mary University of London

Auction Analysis: Parametric and Nonparametric Quantile Regression Methods for Asymmetric Ascending Auctions – investigating market efficiencies.

AF150085                                             One-Year                                                            £25,000

Most of the transactions made by the Government in Brazil are executed via public procurements. Asymmetry is a relevant question in the auction literature due to the incentive weak bidders have to collude in order to increase their gains in the auction. Most of the contributions in the structural literature have focused on developing identification and estimation approaches to recover the asymmetric private value distribution in first-price sealed-bid auctions (FPSB), whereas it has been shown that collusion is always more profitable and easier to sustain in ascending auctions than in FPSB. This paper proposes an identification and estimation approach based on quantile regression to recover the asymmetric private value distributions in ascending auction under the independent private value setup. We also propose a test for collusion based on the distance of the predicted optimal bid quantile function and the actual one submitted in the auction. Brazil can benefit from the new estimation method proposed to analyse auctions, since it is easy to be implemented, very flexible in terms of specifications and allows to make use of all the interesting information available in the dataset. The project also proposes a test of collusion, which can be used by the Brazilian Government to detect collusive behaviour and to act in order to improve efficiency in the market. Exposure of Brazilian PhD students and researchers to UK scientific standards not only allows for knowledge transmission but brings opportunity to the Brazilian researchers to engage with the UK scientific community, for instance through conference talks, personal interactions, publishing, and postdoctoral placements.

 

Egypt

 

Professor Ehab Abouaish, Cairo University

Dr Ann-Marie Nienaber, University of Glasgow

Overcoming Deficiencies through Trustworthy Networks: A Comparative Study between the UK and Egypt Experiences in the Healthcare Sector

AF150280                             Two-Year                            £29,000.00

The Egyptian health care system suffers from limited resources, dealing with the burden of illnesses associated with poverty, lack of education, growing population and most notably coping with dysfunctional and weak institutions (Ministry of health and population, Cairo, 2014). Egyptian government shares this burden with various stakeholders building networks [such as social alliances and partnerships]. This project aims are threefold (1) identification of deficiencies and strengths of health care sector in the two countries understudy(2) understanding and evaluating the process of network building and sustenance in both countries (3) building on the lessons learned from the NHS in the UK, with its long history of sustainable healthcare networks and well-established institutional context, to offer recommendations to the Egyptian health care on how to build sustainable healthcare networks-whereby trust is expected to play a vital role. Policy makers and practitioners within the Egyptian health care sector could capitalise on the experiences of these successful networks to cope with the challenges and obstacles facing Egypt’s health care system. In the long term, an improved institutional framework of the health care system in Egypt could enhance economic growth and the population’s health and wellbeing.

 

Malaysia

 

Dr Cheng-Chwee Kuik, Universiti Kebangsaan

Dr Lee Jones, Queen Mary University of London

Domestic Legitimation and Regional Transformation: Explaining the Sources of China’s (Contradictory) Periphery Strategy and the Variations in Regional States’ Responses.

AF150300                                             Two-Year                                                            £70,500.00

China has been Malaysia’s largest trading partner since 2009. In recent years, the Malaysian government has made efforts to attract more investment from China. A better understanding on the sources of China’s regional initiatives and the effects of regional responses will better position Malaysia to maximize their commercial interests without incurring social costs and external risks. This project aims to examine the nexus between elites’ domestic legitimation and transformations in regional international relations. Specifically, it examines how East Asian regimes’ legitimation strategies are expressed in their foreign policies in the context of China’s rise. The project proposes to: (1) explore how the Chinese Communist Party’s growing legitimation problems are expressed in an increasingly contradictory regional strategy, which couples growing maritime “assertiveness” with diplomatic and economic inducements, notably the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank and the “One Belt One Road” initiatives; and (2) explore how Southeast Asian regimes’ own domestic legitimacy concerns shape their response to China’s policies. The project is significant for two reasons. In terms of theory, it challenges the structural realist proposition that over-emphasizes power-balancing as the drivers of state behaviour. In terms of policy, explaining how regional states are responding to China is crucial for understanding the direction of regional order in the “Asian century”. This project will help produce policy-relevant findings for Malaysian policymakers, thereby serving the country’s long-term development and stability as well as enhance capacity-building among its foreign and defence officials.

 

Dr Stefanie Shamila Pillai, University of Malaysia

Professor Peter Austin, School of Oriental and Asian Studies

Capacity Building for Documentation and Support of Endangered Languages in Malaysia – improving socio-economic development of indigenous and minority communities.

AF150224                                             Two-Year                                                            £33,070.00

There are about 130 languages spoken in Malaysia, a large majority of which are considered endangered. However there has been no consolidated attempt to systematically document and archive information about them. Research and documentation projects on endangered languages have tended to be done in isolation. Materials and analyses are generally inaccessible to the other researchers, and the language communities involved. This project aims to: (1) develop a set of resources on documentation practices and output on endangered languages in Malaysia; (2) facilitate the creation of a team of local key-personnel, comprising researchers and members of language communities, who are trained in language documentation processes and procedures. The long term aim of the project is for the key-personnel to train more local researchers and communities, to develop a sustainable accessible archive for endangered languages in Malaysia, and to contribute to social development in indigenous and minority communities within the country.  This project has the potential to contribute towards the preservation and revitalisation of the language and cultural heritage of indigenous and minority communities in Malaysia and complements efforts by the Malaysian government to elevate the socio-economic status of these communities through education, rural development, entrepreneurship and health.

 

Mexico

 

Dr Maria-Azahara Mesa-Jurado, El Colegio de la Frontera Sur

Dr Julia Martin-Ortega, University of Leeds

Applying ecosystem services-based approaches to water resource decision making: studying the risk of nature commodification in Mexico’s last free-flowing river.

AF150190                                             Two-Year                                                            £71,500.00

Environmental governance needs to reconcile tensions between economic development and conservation, acknowledging the complex relationships between humans and nature. Ecosystem services (ES) is one of the latest approaches of conceptualizing such relationships. Its anthropocentric and instrumental character has raised concerns about the potential commodification of nature where markets are created for public environmental goods, or where indigenous non-anthropocentric views are marginalized. This project was aimed at understanding the extent to which nature commodification is occurring in Mexico, following the adoption of the ES paradigm. Studying the views of environmental professionals and the behaviour of local indigenous communities, this research is among the first to provide empirical evidence on this topic. Results indicate that the ES approach is now clearly part of Mexico’s environmental governance discourse, but that it has led to little change in practice. Environmental professionals actually consider ‘missing out’ on the opportunity of internalizing the monetary value of ES in the face of economic growth-oriented development to be a greater risk than commodification and changes to indigenous worldviews. Instead, negative side-effects may be seen as a ‘necessary evil’ to achieve conservation targets. Results uncover a political dilemma that goes much beyond practical operational challenges of the ES-approach, and which might be rooted at a deeper level, i.e. in the values of those involved. Hence, to meet SDGs in Mexico and in the developing world more generally, policy-makers need to understand and act upon this value-base if significant step-change is to be made in the economic development/environmental conservation struggle.

 

Ms Sara Torres-Castro, The National Institute of Geriatrics (INGER)

Dr Azucena Guzman, University of Edinburgh

Developing Psychosocial Interventions in long-term care for Dementia to improve quality of life amongst the ageing in Mexico.

AF150230                             Two-Year                            £66,200.00

In Mexico, research shows the prevalence of dementia in older people is 7.4% and 7.3% for urban and rural areas respectively. Due to the deterioration of people living with dementia, some caregivers choose to transfer the family member to long-term care. Previous studies such as the WHELD model, consisting of coaching and training staff on reviewing antipsychotics and implementing psychosocial interventions has shown significant results on behavioural improvement and quality of life. Care staff training research has found that if training is provided, quality of life, stimulation and activity of residents increases.  Mexico is developing a National Dementia Strategy Plan, aiming to improve the quality of life of people affected by dementia in long-term care. Mexico is interested in following the guidance from Scotland, which has achieved two Dementia Strategies successfully. The project aims to develop and evaluate the feasibility a set of interventions to promote activity and quality of life for people with dementia and their care staff in care homes in Mexico.  The transfer of knowledge and research skills from the University of Edinburgh will allow Mexico to learn from Scotland's Health System and Dementia National Strategy, as well as allow the research team to develop therapeutic models of care in dementia and contribute to advancing the economic development and social welfare of Mexico.

 

Dr Sandra Bustillos, Universidad Autónoma de Ciudad Juárez (UACJ)

Dr Hugo Gaggiotti, University of the West of England

Organising in the borderlands: applying research to support families, children and youngsters in Mexican-USA borderlands (Ciudad Juarez, Mexico)

AF150239                             Two-Year                            £65,140.00

Institutions like city councils and schools have requested the University of Ciudad Juarez (UACJ) and the Juarez -El Paso Group of Organizational Research -JEPGOR- (previous awarded British Academy project) to help the professionalization of the management of organisations who support families, children and youngsters in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico through applied research with institutionalised children, indigenous people of Ciudad Juarez and their relationships with urban institutions and youngsters and the organised work of the “maquilas”. The lack of trained researchers implies poor understanding of organisations and the inability to help management to improve. The aim of the project is a) to consolidate UACJ and JEPGOR research capacity and b) to lead the development of a formal education programme, but the primary objective is to contribute to the promotion of socio-economic welfare in Chihuahua by transferring this knowledge as professional organizational practices that ultimately help to solve social and economic needs of families, children and youngsters in Ciudad Juarez (Mexico).

 

Dr Mauricio Rivera, Centro de Investigación y Docencia Económicas (CIDE)

Dr Kristian Skrede Gleditsch, University of Essex

Explaining the Other Half: The Fall of Violent Crime in Mexico in the 1990s-2000s

AF150270                             Two-Year                                            £69,600.00

Mexico has experienced two remarkable divergent trends in violent crime over the last 25 years. Over the period 1990-2007, homicide rates per 100,000 inhabitants decreased by 53 percent. Since 2008, however, escalating organized criminal violence related to the drug war has seen homicide rates increase by nearly 50 percent. Whereas many researchers have analyzed explanations for the surge of organized criminal violence, the prior reduction in violent crime has received much less attention. This project will examine why violent crime declined between 1990 and 2007, as well as contrast theoretical models to assess similarities and differences between ‘common’ violent crime and organized criminal violence. A better understanding of why violent crime dropped before the drug war and how different types of crime differ can help provide sound basis for anti-crime policy prescriptions in Mexico and other developing countries.

 

Dr Ajnesh Prasad, Tecnologico de Monterrey

Professor Marianna Fotaki, University of Warwick

Economic Inequality, Institutional Corruption and the Mexican Public Service

AF150261                             Two-Year                            £73,290.00

The proposed research project will examine the relationship between economic inequality and institutional corruption in the Mexican public service. Using a set of case studies, complemented by in-depth interviews with key informants from the public sector, industry, and regulatory bodies as well as a survey of current MBA students at a leading Mexican business school, it will consider the dynamics of institutional corruption in the Mexican public service, and further account for how institutional corruption contributes to the propagation of economic inequality in the country. The empirical research will foreground a series of ‘take aways’ in terms of constructive avenues by which institutional corruption in the public service in Mexico can be curtailed. Ultimately, this research project will contribute to the ongoing discourse on economic inequality and institutional corruption occurring amongst academics, public-policy makers and business practitioners.

 

Dr Juan Carlos Martinez, Unidad Pacifico-Sur (South Pacific Branch)

Dr Monica Gabriela Moreno Figueroa, University of Cambridge

Institutional racism and the logics of the contemporary Mexican state

AF150211                             Two-Year                            £73,952.00

This project aims to strengthen the study of racism within scholarship on pluralism and legal anthropology and to understand how racism operates in the construction of the state. The project has 2 components: research and training. The ethnographic research will explore the ideas of inferiority and superiority that justify the actions of the state over subordinate groups. The case studies will analyse how the state defines and offers differentiated access to resources (water), services (health) and legal recognition. The project will generate training processes to strengthen the skills of the applicants and those of a local research group formed by academics, activists, judges and other civil servants. The project includes: research and academic exchange visits; fieldwork in Mexico; two permanent seminars (one academic and one of social intervention/impact); a workshop on subjectivity, racism and anti-racist action and; an international symposium. We will produce three articles: one edited collection, three videos, a project report, policy brief and key facts sheet and a webpage.

 

Dr Karina Mariela Ansolabehere, Latin American School of Social Sciences (FLACSO-Mexico)

Professor Leigh Ann Payne, University of Oxford

Understanding human rights violations in Mexico. The case of disappearances

AF150260                             Two-Year                            £34,900.00

In the literature a consensus has emerged regarding the escalation of human rights violations as a result of violent contexts. Research on this topic, however, has tended to examine country-level outcomes and disregard the micro- or local-level conditions associated with human rights violations. Mexico is an interesting case in this regard. During the last eight years more than 20,000 people have disappeared, but these disappearances are not distributed evenly across the country. Thus, existing country-level explanations do not help us understand this phenomenon. The proposed project seeks to solve this puzzle by deeply investigating the local dynamics of disappearances within the Mexican case. To do so, the project aims to carry out four activities: 1) develop a webpage to make visible the disappearances, the location of those disappearances, and the impunity surrounding them; 2) build a publicly accessible database, 3) train new human rights defenders, and 4) analyze that data with the intention of developing academic analysis and improving litigation and policies.

 

 

South Africa

 

Dr Catherine Draper, University of Cape Town

Professor Gaia Scerif, University of Oxford

Executive Function in South African Preschool Children from Low-income Settings

AF150058                                             Two-Year                                                            £54,605

Executive function refers to the mental processes we use to pay attention and concentrate – a key component of cognitive development that has been associated with a number of positive physical and psychosocial outcomes in early childhood. Despite its importance, executive function in this age group remains a relatively under-researched area in South Africa, where there are concerns around children’s cognitive development, especially in low-income settings, and the impact this may have on their literacy and numeracy skills at school. This project aims to address this gap in the research, and improve understanding of executive function, and how it relates to school readiness, and aspects of preschool children’s physical development, specifically physical activity and gross motor skills. Insight into these relationships could contribute significantly to the development of strategies to improve executive function, which could help to ultimately improve the wellbeing of children in settings with many economic, social and psychological challenges.

 

Professor Lesley Wood, North-West University

Dr Mary McAteer, Edge Hill University

Ubunye: Empowering Parents in Disadvantaged South African Communities to Support Classroom Learning

AF150060                                             Two-Year                                                            £71,350

Twenty-one years into democracy in South Africa, access to quality education still eludes those who cannot afford to pay for it. The socio-economic adversities facing the communities in which schools are situated play a large role in their dysfunction. Yet, within such communities there is a wealth of human resources that can add real value to the quality of teaching and learning. This project aims to develop community members as teaching assistants, who will work hand in hand with teachers to develop a culturally and contextually relevant programme to empower parents/guardians to partner with the school in the education of their children. An action research design, using a qualitative approach to data generation and analysis, will ensure the participation of all stakeholders in the design, implementation and evaluation of the programme. The development of such a programme will help to improve parental involvement, as well as equip unemployed community members with skills that will improve their chance of formal employment and enhance personal development.

 

Professor Sophie Oldfield, University of Cape Town

Professor Clive Barnett, University of Exeter

South African Urban Imperatives Past, Present and Future: Theory Building with Knowledge Beyond the University

AF150044                                             Two-Year                                                            £59,920

South African cities are essential to national development as centres of economic growth and as places with extensive infrastructure, services and livelihood opportunities. They are also contexts of extreme and increasing poverty, as well as conflict and protest. The Fellowship starts from the premise that urban scholarship has been central to defining the strategic possibilities of political change and socio-economic development in South Africa for 40 years, either side of the transition from apartheid to democracy. The Fellowship focuses on the distinctive imperatives of engagement that shape South African urban scholarship. These include practices of activism, consultancy, forms of co-production, and more conventional forms of academic expertise and critique. The Fellowship will focus on the reorientation of urban social science in post-apartheid South Africa, in light of changing societal imperatives of development, reconciliation, and transformation. In so doing, it will draw into view the ways in which academic knowledge articulates diverse forms of non-academic knowledge that express diverse interests and needs.

The project will enhance understanding of practices through which drivers of development needs are identified and shaped by diverse knowledge networks. Capacitated, engaged scholarship on cities is essential to understand these complexities and to produce locally relevant, globally informed research. Its engagement with emerging and young scholars, as well as its production of scholarly publications and pedagogical materials also enhance its utility for the development of urban scholarship in South African universities more generally.

 

Turkey

 

Dr Basak Cali, Koç University

Ms Lorna McGregor, University of Essex

Effects of International Human Rights Law on Public International Law and Its Sub-Branches

AF150046                                             Two-Year                                                            £65,095

This research project aims to enable the applicant to build and lead a research team by way of establishing a long-term research agenda and training programme. The project aims to advance our understanding of the extent that international human rights law (IHRL) has had an effect on public international law (PIL) and its main sub-branches. This project will interrogate the assumption that IHRL is more than merely a sub-branch of international law with wider effects on the interpretation and development of PIL and its sub-branches. It will do so by comparatively analysing the effects of IHRL on PIL and synthesising the implications of these findings for legal policy. The project will position the applicant and her research team, in partnership with the Essex Human Rights Centre, at the centre of new thinking on how IHRL can effectively shape the development of PIL and its sub-branches. It will strengthen research networks within Turkey, particularly through the development the newly established Centre for Global Public Law (CGPL) and a new doctoral programme at Koç University.

 

Dr Mehmet Ruhi Demiray, Kocaeli University

Dr Sorin Baiasu, Keele University

Dealing Ethically with Conflicts Between Deep Commitments: A Dual Critical-Hermeneutic Approach

AF150021                                             Two-Year                                                            £56,580

The project aims to develop the Applicant’s strengths and provide support for training and development in collaboration with Keele University through a number of interrelated activities:

- Founding a Research Centre for Human Rights and Ethics at Kocaeli University, the employing university of the Applicant, with the help of the Centre for Kantian Studies, run at Keele jointly with Oxford University and the University of St Andrews and led by the Coapplicant;

- Researching in the area of the project with a view to formulating an ethical approach to conflicts between deep commitments under current conditions of pluralism, this being one of key themes for the newly founded Centre for Human Rights and Ethics;

- Disseminating research through several events, publications and media presence, which will also develop and strengthen the applicant’s existing research network.

The current project builds on an already existing cooperation between the Applicant, Co-applicant and their home institutions, and it is designed to secure long-term institutional collaboration and development.

 

Dr Serdal Temel, Ege University

Professor Mine Karatas-Ozkan, University of Southampton

Entrepreneurial Universities, Innovation and the Role of Technology Transfer Offices in Emerging Economies

AF150057                                             Two-Year                                                            £71,676

The objective of research is centred on setting up a sustainable, long-term network that can support universities in Turkey to develop technology transfer, commercialisation and trade activities that will provide regional and national economic growth.  The focus will be around creating robust knowledge exchange, entrepreneurship and trade activities within Turkish universities, which will help, create jobs and economic growth.  The focus will be on universities wider support agencies, innovation intermediaries which include public, private and social enterprise organisations, facilitating and advising the innovation and entrepreneurship process. The research in Turkey will also importantly seek to reflect back and provide lessons for UK universities and intermediaries seeking to support entrepreneurship and trade and promote better ties with Turkey.

 

  

Newton Mobility Grants

 

Brazil

 

Dr Vanessa Empinotti, Universidade Federal do ABC – UFABC

Dr Jessica Budds, University of East Anglia

Securing Water for Megacities: An Analysis of Water Governance and Scarcity in the São Paulo Metropolitan Region

NG150122                                           One-Year                                                            £10,000

The aim of this project is to understand the causes and effects of water shortages in São Paulo, and how decision-making structures and processes both trigger and address them. Despite having a relatively well-functioning water utility, this megacity has struggled to supply water to an expanding population amid limited supplies, especially to poor areas. One question is whether a centralized water utility is suitable for such a large and diverse city. One proposed solution is to instead mobilize the resources and expertise of the private sector, despite disappointing results elsewhere. Based on a study of central São Paulo and the municipalities surrounding its main reservoirs, this project will examine how the utility’s institutional structure, comprising a private-public partnership, has influenced investment in infrastructure and management of consumer demand. It will explore how far these institutional aspects have combined with climatic conditions to produce shortages, and to encourage individual water infrastructure.

 

Professor Sandra Guardini Vasconcelos,University of São Paulo

Dr Ross Forman, University of Warwick

The Novel without Frontiers: a collaborative knowledge exchange project between Brazilian and UK researchers on thinking beyond nation-based literary and area studies.

NG150081                                           One-Year                                                            £10,000

Social welfare incorporates social justice. Social justice, in turn, requires an accurate, politically engaged understanding of a country’s past in order to address the origins of contemporary economic inequalities and to understand the culture industry’s role in national consciousness. This collaboration takes as it theme “The Novel without Frontiers,” bringing together scholars of different literary traditions to think beyond nation-based literary studies and area studies. In Brazil, the novel was a fundamental part of the process of nation-building during the long eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, and culture continues to be a crucial area in which local, regional, and national identities and Brazil’s face to the world is negotiated.  Focusing on the novel in different geopolitical contexts, we ask how a literary form thought to be enmeshed in a specific historical process—the rise of the European bourgeoisie and capitalism – could and did travel and prosper in other environments. It highlights the marginalization of slavery and Afro-Brazilian heritage. Through workshops and classes, we will analyse the transformation of the genre across languages, space, and time. We will lay the groundwork for a broader Brazilian-UK dialogue on this fundamental form of literature. Our project will increase the visibility of Brazilian scholars and scholarship in the area of World Literature and literary studies more generally in the UK. The undergraduate, postgraduate, and postdoctoral scholars involved will gain important exposure to new methodologies, and the opportunity to enhance their research and training and their international marketability. Knowledge transfer about what we are calling "the novel without frontiers" will contribute to a “de-provincializing” of Brazilian Studies, encouraging scholars to situate Brazil, through the novel, in a larger global framework.

 

Dr Tomas Martins, Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Paraná

Dr Adrian Bailey, University of Exeter

Developing Sustainable Agricultural Supply Chains: Building Capacity for Executive Training and Supply Chain Research with Co-operative Managers

NG150123                                           One-Year                                                            £10,000

The Business, Nature, Value research group in Exeter seeks to transfer expertise to PUCPR in three areas. First, in the area of sustainable supply chain management, we will share conceptual framing and research methodologies to develop PUCPR research into agricultural co-operatives. Second, in the area of pedagogy, Exeter will share expertise developed through the experience of delivering undergraduate modules and postgraduate programmes that are informed by the philosophy of co-operative learning and which simulate decision making in co-operative enterprises. Third, Exeter will share knowledge about retailing and the interface between producer and consumer co-operatives. We will provide insights into how the conceptual framing of multi-stakeholder relationships in co-operatives can be developed through theories of service dominant logic. Consumer co-operation is less developed in Brazil and PUCPR is keen to lean from the UK in this area. The UK will benefit from PUCPR’s experience and networks with agri-business co-operatives.

 

Dr Marcos Cueto-Caballero, Fiocruz, Casa de Oswaldo Cruz

Dr Paulo Drinot, University College London

Building capacity through collaboration - Latin American Studies Journals in the Twentieth and Twenty-first Centuries: the UK and the Brazilian Experiences

NG150044                                           One-Year                                                            £9,930

Brazilian academic journals face a number of challenges. Continuity in keeping high academic standards as an organizing principle has been uneven, and rigid institutional procedures have persisted. These factors undermine sustained progress and make problematic making greater inroads in the academic publishing world. Although Brazilian scientific production continues to rise in terms of articles published and visibility in Latin America, it has to improve its impact in the whole world. UK journals have much to learn from the use of social media of Brazilian journals. The aim of this project is to strengthen and expand collaboration between UK and Brazilian academic communities and in particular to enhance the research and managerial capacity of both UK and Brazil based scholars, editors of journals and members of editorial boards of journals in the field of Latin American studies through exchange of knowledge, skills and expertise in relation to the editing, editorial policies, management and publishing of academic journals in order to support excellent research, and its dissemination, in both Brazil and the UK, and more generally.  

 

Dr Giovanna Medeiros Rataichesck Fiates, Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina

Dr Moira Dean, Queen's University Belfast

Investigating the habits of shoppers when they do or don’t buy healthful foods: Developing recommendations to help consumers make healthier shopping decisions in Brazil.

NG150026                                           One-Year                                                            £9,800

Eating healthily is a means of achieving good health with people being advised to look after themselves through consuming a healthy diet. To develop recommendations to help consumers in Brazil make healthier shopping decisions it is necessary to understand their food purchase decisions. This proposed research investigates the habits of shoppers to determine when and why they do/don’t buy healthy foods, to gain an understanding of the reasoning behind their food choices and to explore the role of shopping practices/strategies that promote and impede healthy shopping behaviour. Using both quantitative and qualitative methods such as mood/situation questionnaire, accompanied shop and in-store tasks consumer reasoning, shopping practices and strategies employed around food selection with links to individual, social, situational and socio-demographic factors will be explored. Food purchased in the supermarket will also be classified against new Dietary Guidelines in Brazil.  This research will add to current understandings of how people decide to buy the food that they do and recommend ways of helping consumers in Brazil select healthier food. This proposal builds on existing work by Dr Fiates, a nutritionist, around eating and food shopping habits of parents and schoolchildren in Brazil. The collaboration will contribute to improving the design of experimental studies and validation of measures, not only for Dr Fiates’ students, but for her peer PhD supervisors and PhD candidates from Federal University of Santa Catarina. In addition, this collaboration will facilitate future joint funding applications as well as post graduate and post-doctoral student/staff exchanges which will be of benefit to both countries.

 

Mr André Bazzoni Bueno, University of Sao Paulo

Professor Jose Zalabardo, University College London

Mind, language and action: Investigating the connections between the physical and the human realities through knowledge and skill transfer between the UK and Brazil.

NG150010                                           One-Year                                                            £9,790

Brazil is an emergent economic power. However, while economic development may occur in the short term, it will not be effective if it is not accompanied by intellectual development. But intellectual development can only be achieved in the longer term, via knowledge and skill transfer throughout the new, fresh generations of thinkers. This project deals with the understanding of fundamental human institutions such as language and collective behaviour, and how they are responsible for the construction of the human social reality in general. This proposal lies in the intersection of the philosophical areas of mind, language and action. Its general goal is to understand how the human reality of mental states, language and social institutions arises from the brute and meaningless physical reality described by the natural sciences.  The project will benefit USP in providing the opportunity to host an international event of high standing, as well as the Brazilian philosophical community.

 

Dr Tiago Ribeiro Duarte, University of Brasília

Dr Luis Ignacio Reyes Galindo, Cardiff University

Building Human Capital in Empirical Sociology of Science for Latin America

NG150083                                           One-Year                                                            £10,000

Science and technology studies (STS) is a dynamic and interdisciplinary research field that analyses the social and cultural dimensions and impact of science and technology. The STS discipline has recently begun to turn its head towards the so-called Global South (GS) and recognised it as a rich field of potential research. This is because the sociocultural conditions in which science and technology exist in the GS are contrastingly different to those encountered in the developed world. Latin America, for example, is a region where traditional cultural perspectives and policy-making practices often clash with globalised and North-led perspectives on science and technology. The project will centre on developing STS perspectives that take into account Latin American realities at both theoretical and empirical levels. We seek to invite reflections from scholars on how to appropriate traditional STS models for the region and, just as important, to develop training opportunities for young scholars that fit into the state of the art of empirical STS.

 

Dr Maria Camila D'Ottaviano, University of São Paulo

Dr Urmi Sengupta, Queen's University Belfast

Brazilian Favelas and Indian Slums: A Comparative Research on Policies, Programs and Government Intervention

NG150109                                           One-Year                                                            £9,600

The proposed mobility programme involves researchers from the UK and Sao Paulo to exchange knowledge and experience in management of favelas in Brazil and Bustees in India. A key objective is to foster and support academic research provisionally titled ‘Brazilian Favelas and Indian Slums: A comparative research on policies, programs and government intervention’. The exchange activity will run for 12 months involving two exchange visits to Sao Paulo and Belfast with a number of specific objectives set for each visit which include visits to favelas, seminar presentation and teaching delivery. The project will help to achieve a long term collaboration built around joint application for a major funding call, joint publication and joint-hosting of a session in a major international conference.

 

Dr Miriam Cristina Marques da Silva de Paiva, Faculdade de Medicina de Botucatu-UNESP

Dr Lucy Sitton-Kent, University of Nottingham

Preventing Hospital Acquired Catheter Associated Urinary Tract Infections (CUTIs) in People Over 65 Years Old: A Qualitative Study of Knowledge Transfer in the UK and Brazil

NG150113                                           One-Year                                                            £8,310

Patients over 65 years have higher mortality rates, longer length of hospital stays, increased functional decline, and care-home placements associated with the development of Hospital Acquired Infections (HAIs). This places a significant economic and social demand on healthcare systems, patients and carers. By facilitating training and skill transfer from the UK to Brazil we aim to build capacity to produce excellent research, reduce the social and economic demand and establish long term research links to share learning and provide sustainable benefit to the UK and Brazilian research community.

The aim of this phase of the project is for the UK Team to develop the qualitative research capability of our Brazilian colleagues and produce 2 high quality discussion papers. We are all early career researchers, keen to capitalise on the relationship we have initiated at a workshop to develop a robust sustainable research collaboration. Thus we want to pursue the unique opportunities to learn from each other in how to prevent older patients developing HAIs, particularly CUTIs.

 

Dr Fabiola Chesani, Universidade do Vale do Itajaí - UNIVALI

Dr Anne Mandy, University of Brighton

Breaking Down Barriers and Improving Quality of Life for Wheelchair Users

NG150064                                           One-Year                                            £9,520

Manual wheelchair provision in Brazil is outdated and inappropriate for stroke or partly paralysed users. Users report that their independence, quality of life, employment potential, and ability to contribute to society are severely compromised. This grant aims to:

1 ) Identify a population of partly paralysed wheelchair users in Santa Catarina and describe current wheelchair provision for them.

2) Explore the barriers to social participation, and the impact that this has on their quality of life.

3) Build an international collaboration with experts that will inform and influence the National Policy of Brazil of the rights of persons with disabilities.

4) Produce findings to inform social welfare and enable the potential for economic and social development.

The project will enable a Brazilian research physiotherapist to work with a UK assistive mobility expert to explore the barriers to assistive technology, evaluate disabled users needs and influence government health care policy.

 

China

 

 

Professor Peng Yuan, Rural Development Institute of CASS

Dr Fu Jeff Jia, University of Exeter

A comparative study of the roles of cooperatives in the agricultural supply chain between China and UK

NG150313                           One-Year                            £6,875.00

The project brings together CASS and Exeter to transfer best practice in agricultural cooperatives research. The Rural Development Institute (RDI) at CASS is contributing to rural development i.e., conducting research into rural economic organisation and institutions and providing policy advice to government agencies in China. RDI seeks to partner with a British university conducting research on cooperatives, an area in which Exeter has expertise. Since 2010, Exeter has been funded by WWF for research into sustainable SCM for large-scale MNCs in China, and also by the Cooperative Group to develop curricula and teaching on its undergraduate modules and One Planet MBA. BNV of Exeter and RDI of CASS will collaborate on: 1) comparing different roles and models of coops in agricultural supply chain between China and UK; 2) identifying projects and funding to develop a knowledge base to inform research on cooperatives.

 

Dr Lin Xiao, Institute of Sociology

Dr Sin Yi Cheung, Cardiff University

Improving Social Welfare System in China: Urbanization, Community Development, and Social Participation

AF150320                             Two-Year                            £64,000.00

During rapid urbanization and marketization, China experiences an unbalanced economic and social development both between and within cities. To promote social justice and sustainable development, the establishment and improvement of social welfare system is crucial. However, the demographic transitions and social changes during the reform era poses a great challenge to Chinese's present welfare system. Situating on the unbalanced development of Chinese welfare system, this collaborative research project aims to explore the mechanism of the dilemma of China's current welfare development, and proposes practical and realistic policy recommendations for future development.

 

 

Malaysia

 

Dr Shanthi Thambiah, University of Malaya

Professor Janet Carsten, University of Edinburgh

Transnational Domestic Workers, Gender, Kinship and Relatedness in Malaysia – in the context of labour relations and economics.

NG150235                                           One-Year                                                            £4,150

Anthropologists have increasingly moved away from the term ‘kinship’ in favour of Carsten’s (2000) conception of ‘relatedness’. Recent literature in this field unpacks conventional assumptions about the biological basis of relatedness and challenges the relegation of kinship studies to the private sphere. However, it is only beginning to engage critically with the workplace and with practices of relatedness emanating from there. These important themes, which are often somewhat neglected in Malaysian social scientific research, are fundamental to social welfare and harmonious economic development. The presence of foreign domestic workers within middle class families in Malaysia will be examined to rethink practices and idioms of kinship performed by people considered as ‘labour’. In theorizing work alongside idioms and practices of kinship, the research will fill a gap in the ‘new kinship studies’. Bringing together theories of labour with new anthropological approaches to kinship it will show how kinship and labour are mutually entwined, and consider the implications of this entanglement for our understandings of kinship and of labour relations. The project will strengthen research capacity at University of Malaya through 1) training in research and writing and 2) skills transfer from the UK co-applicant, Professor Carsten, to postgraduate students and early career academics at the University of Malaya. This work will seek to encourage further research projects on household labour and economics that incorporate the investigation of kinship and gender relations.

 

Dr Tze Peng Wong, University of Nottingham, Malaysia campus

Dr Daisy Ann Powell, University of Reading

Analysis of cross-language transfer in early literacy acquisition among bilingual Malay-English speaking children in Malaysia

NG150239                           One-Year                            £4,259.00

Literacy levels can have a marked impact on a country’s economic growth. Achieving literacy proficiency in Malay and English has been a priority of the government. In Malaysia, literacy proficiency in Malay and English have distinct values: Malay is predominantly used in governmental organisations and English in private organisations. Though both languages are mandatory subjects from the start of school, little is known about cross-linguistic influences on bilingual literacy acquisition in this context. This project will address this knowledge gap by exploring the influence of language, reading and reading-related skills in Malay on the learning of literacy in English, and vice-versa. Data will be collected on reading and related skills from 160 children aged four to seven years, using existing English tests (adapted to the Malay context where necessary) and Malay equivalents, which we will develop. Relationships between performance on the various measures, within and between languages, will be investigated using regression analysis. The project will allow career-enriching knowledge transfer between applicants; the workshop will allow for broader training and dissemination.

The findings of this project will lead to best-informed decisions in investment in literacy interventions at the school and national level, such as the LINUS programme, an initiative that universally screens Malay-English literacy and numeracy skills of all primary pupils in Malaysia and subsequently provides additional literacy and numeracy intervention to under-performing pupils.

Through effective preventative and intervention measures in literacy intervention, societal issues such as low literacy rates, and social, emotional and behavioural disorders that stem from poor literacy skills can be alleviated. In the long run, literacy improvement enhances the quality of employment and contributes to a country’s human resource capability and economic growth.

 

Dr Noraida Endut, Universiti Sains Malaysia

Dr Lilian Miles, Middlesex University

Improving Institutional Responses to Maternity Protection (MP) in Malaysia: Drawing from Experiences and Practices in the UK

NG150226                           One-Year                            £4,995.00

This project seeks ways to enhance maternity protection (MP) policies and practices in Malaysia, which has one of the lowest female labour force participation rates in Asia. In part, this is attributable to legislative and socio-cultural constraints and employer resistance to MP. Effective MP provisions have important implications for social well-being and economic development. The project will draw on the experience and expertise of key researchers, advocates and practitioners in MP in the UK, where existing structures reflect sensitivity to the gendered-needs of women and where measures to encourage and support good employer practices have been taken. It seeks to understand the challenges UK firms experience in internalising and implementing MP measures, and observe first-hand, how barriers may be overcome. With the support of networks in the UK, it will develop research capacity in Malaysia to explore the conditions necessary for the effective implementation of MP within its firms.

 

Mexico

 

Dr Monica Serrano, El Colegio de México

Dr Thomas Pegram, University College London

Interaction and Impact in Transnational Narcotics Governance: the International Drug Control Regime and the International Human Rights Regime in the Americas

NG150090                                           One-Year                                                            £9,750

The project objective is to launch a new collaborative research partnership on the development and impact of regime interaction and impact in transnational narcotics governance, specifically the International Drug Control Regime (IDCR) and the International Human Rights Regime (IHRR) with a focus on Mexico and the Americas. This cross-disciplinary group of scholars (expert in global governance, international relations, human rights, the Americas and drug policy) will explore the use of innovative methods and approaches to understand how the IDCR and the IHRR interact and with what consequences for persons within and beyond national jurisdictions in the Americas. Systematic assessment of the evolution and impact of regime interaction will contribute with practical insights into the conflict and challenges posed by regime interplay between the IDCR and IHRR, but also the potential for productive engagement which can potentially serve as the basis for enhancing the performance of both regimes.

 

Dr Raul Trejo Delarbre, National Autonomous University of Mexico

Dr Helen Thornham, University of Leeds

Digital Culture and its Discontents in Mexico and the UK: beyond connectivity, after access and use.

NG150107                                           One-Year                                                            £10,000

Mexico is a developing economy with one of the highest rates of internet connectivity growth in Latin America. It was the first country in Latin America to be connected to bitnet (before the creation of Internet) and has one of the highest numbers of users in Latin America (just below USA and Brazil). At the same time, it is a country with great unbalance in the distribution of resources and a limited reach in innovative theoretical and methodological initiatives. With Mexico being considered one of the biggest emerging markets, the importance of a critical use of digital technologies is paramount in its development as a country. The term ‘digital culture’ is fraught with questions around access, digital literacy, citizenship and choice that underpin many government-led initiatives such as e-Mexico. Our research focuses on so-called ‘digital natives’ (the excluded – traditionally the aged or young, rural or poor) who are digitally ‘literate’ yet despite this remain disempowered, uneducated and disenfranchised. This project brings together researchers, post-docs, PhD students and communities in Mexico and the UK that have been investigating digital culture as discreet: as geographically and socio-economically contingent. We ask what an investigation into the lived realities of digital culture reveals for the values inherent in digital connectivity as well as what interventions are possible for the future. The collaboration between the UK and Mexico is what enables this – drawing out the global connections through the sharing of expertise, knowledge and methodologies to develop a shared but distinct critical approach.

 

Dr Miguel Angel Sebastian, Instituto de Investigaciones Filosóficas, UNAM

Dr James Stazicker, University of Reading

Perceptual discrimination in the light of consciousness, cognitive access and attention – an investigation on the relations between these three elements in acquiring knowledge.

NG150209                                           One-Year                                                            £9,570

Key debates in recent philosophy of mind and cognitive science concern the relations between three aspects of our mental lives: (1) perceptual experiences, such as the experience of conscious seeing; (2) the cognitive mechanisms underlying our ability to form perceptual beliefs and report what we are perceiving; (3) attention. For example, is perceptual experience independent of cognition, and does attention alter the character of perceptual experience?

The main purpose of this project is to investigate the implications of the way in which these three elements interact for theories of our ability to perceptually discriminate objects. This ability is essential to the way in which we navigate the world and acquire knowledge about our environment. Dr. Sebastián’s and Dr. Stazicker’s previous research focuses squarely on these issues, forming an ideal basis for collaboration on this joint project. Graduate students at the UNAM, especially those working on epistemology and philosophy of mind, as well as other researchers will enormously benefit from the workshop that will be organized and the seminar led by Dr. Stazicker and Dr Sebastián. This project will give students at the Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico the opportunity to interact with an international researcher and learn at first-hand how leading research in the field is performed.

 

Dr Maria Amalia Amaya Navarro, National Autonomous University of Mexico

Dr Maksymilian Del Mar, Queen Mary University of London

Virtue, Emotion and Imagination in Legal Reasoning – implications for legal and judicial education.

NG150276                                           One-Year                                                            £10,000

This research project aims at examining the role that virtue may play in a theory of legal reasoning. More specifically, the project will focus on the way in which a virtue approach to legal reasoning is tied up with a conception of legal decision-making that recognizes the various ways in which emotions and imagination are critical to sound legal judgment. This research brings into focus elements of legal reasoning that are not usually discussed in traditional approaches to the subject and that are largely absent in Mexican legal scholarship. We also aim to explore the implications that a complex conception of legal decision making that makes room for emotions, virtue and imagination has for legal education and for judicial education. From the complex account of what is involved in legal decision-making that we aim to develop in this project it follows that legal education should be designed with a view to cultivating virtue as well as developing emotional capacities and imaginative abilities among the judiciary. The planned activities will significantly strengthen the institutional relations between the Mexican academic community and the British academic community. The graduate course that Maksymilian Del Mar will deliver will be on a topic that does not figure in the list of courses offered at UNAM. A second course delivered to judges at the Federal Institute of the Judiciary in Mexico has the potential to significantly influence the way in which federal Mexican judges think and reason about legal cases.

 

Dr Jose Juan Olvera Gudino, Centro de Investigaciones y Estudios Superiores en Antropología Social (CIESAS)

Dr Hettie Malcomson, University of Southampton

Understanding violence in contemporary Mexico through music

NG150287                                           One-Year                                                            £9,993

Despite horrific violence, including over 60,000 deaths from 2006-2012 alone, Mexico is officially a country at peace. While social scientists and journalists navigate the entanglement of drug-related violence and state power structures, analyses of popular culture provide some of the most important insights to understand and seek ways to end Mexico’s bellicose violence. Through exchange visits, training and two workshops, this project will bring together a multi-disciplinary team of scholars based in Mexico and the UK to explore what can be learned about the causes and practices of violence in contemporary Mexico through music. Music and violence have been interlinked in Mexico for decades, famously in narcocorridos (drug-related ballads), yet there is scant literature that interrogates what we can learn about Mexico’s current culture of violence through music. The project will explore music that aims to threaten and incite violent encounters; promote anti-violence by imploring empathy and social activism; a combination of these; and otherwise. The primary aim of the project is to contribute to understandings of violence in Mexico more broadly through analysis of the intertwining of music and violence. A secondary benefit includes promoting popular music as an area of serious academic enquiry in Mexico. Outputs will include a peer-reviewed journal article and a proposal for a journal special issue.  

 

South Africa

 

Professor Joanna Vearey, University of the Witwatersrand

Dr Elisabeth-Jane Milne, Coventry University

Marginalised voices: exploring arts-based and narrative methodologies for understanding the lived experiences of migrant sex worker and migrant LGBTQI communities in South Africa and the UK.

NG150023                                           One-Year                                                            £9,970

This proposal draws together researchers and activist scholars working with migrant sex worker and migrant Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer and Intersex (LGBTQI) communities in South Africa and the UK. These marginalised groups remain under-researched. Through creating opportunities for dialogue across different geopolitical spaces and disciplinary approaches, the project provides a unique opportunity to consider the relevance and impact of arts-based and narrative methodologies in diverse contexts, where legal frameworks and the regulation of migrant bodies differ. An initial visit to Coventry University (UK) by two South African scholars, which will include guest lecture/s and a seminar, will be followed by a workshop at Wits University (South Africa) bringing together established and early career scholars to present their work and collaborate on a publication project culminating in a special issue of an international, accredited peer-reviewed journal to be edited by the co-applicants and a funding proposal for further collaborative research. The proposed project will advance understanding of the complexities of developing and implementing research with historically marginalised migrant groups in South Africa. The project will help to build capacity within the local Academy through the participation of emerging and established South African scholars from multiple disciplines, benefiting efforts to continue to advance research practice, particularly with an interdisciplinary leaning. This is urgently required to improve our ways of engaging with the complex social challenges currently faced in South Africa. This will assist in advancing economic development and social welfare by providing insight into ways of conducting social research differently, with an emphasis on how to improve research translation, and uptake – particularly in the creation and sharing of evidence to inform improved policy responses. Due to the cultural relativity and differing political, social, cultural and legal contexts around gender, sexuality and race, this project attempts to address the fundamental difficulties and differences in the treatment of this topic in order to further international understanding.

 

Dr Scott Drimie, Stellenbosch University

Dr Jeff Jia, University of Exeter

Developing Sustainable Agricultural Supply Chains: Building Capacity for Executive Training and Supply Chain Research with Co-operative Managers

NG150085                                           One-Year                                                            £9,690

The project brings together Stellenbosch and Exeter Universities, as partners in the Business, Nature and Value Research Network; to transfer best practice in agricultural co-operative research-led pedagogy from Exeter to Stellenbosch. Stellenbosch’s Food Security Initiative (FSI) is contributing to the emergence of a resilient, sustainable food system for Southern Africa, by reconceptualising food security and creating new models of practice. FSI seeks partnership in agricultural Supply Chain Management (SCM) in which Exeter has expertise. Since 2010, Exeter has been funded by WWF for research into sustainable SCM for large-scale MNCs in China and the Co-operative Group to develop curricula and teaching on its undergraduate modules and One Planet MBA. Exeter and Stellenbosch will collaborate on: 1) accessing data on agricultural supply chain and co-operatives in Southern Africa; 2) transferring best practice in research-led teaching; 3) identifying projects and funding to develop a knowledge base to inform research and co-operative training programmes.

 

Dr Phillip de Jager, University of Cape Town

Dr Helen Solomon, De Montfort University

Monetary Policy and the Banking Sector in South Africa – A programme of exchange, knowledge transfer and collaboration

NG150062                                           One-Year                                                            £9,561

The Bank Lending Channel (BLC) examines the sensitivity of bank loans to changes in monetary policy in South Africa (SA). The BLC is impacted by key bank characteristics such as size, capital strength, liquidity and bank efficiency (productivity). This new collaboration between the University of Cape Town (UCT) in SA and De Montfort University (DMU), UK will strengthen the research capacity of UCT through a series of exchanges, knowledge transfer events and a collaborative research project. This will offer UCT the opportunity to develop skills in dynamic panel data analysis which has not been applied to study the BLC using current data in SA. We focus on SA because it plays a crucial role in the financial development of the region. The inclusion of bank characteristics in the analysis of the BLC represents an innovation in the analysis of the monetary transmission mechanism in SA. This project represents the beginning of a long term, research partnership where regular exchanges and collaborative work will bring benefit to both teaching and research in partner institutions.

 

Dr Alastair van Heerden, Human Sciences Research Council

Dr Seraphim Alvanides, Northumbria University

Investigating the complexities of physical growth in children living in resource constrained environments

NG150180                                           One-Year                                                            £9,880

South Africa, like many other low and middle income countries (LMIC), is undergoing a rapid epidemiological transition with a rise in the burden of non-communicable diseases. For the past thirty years mean global body mass index scores have been steadily increasing. Initially confined to high income countries, recent data suggest obesogenic environments caused by population changes in physical activity and diet are now affecting both adults and children in LMICs. The aim of this project is to develop a new knowledge and research transfer initiative complementing the interests of Dr Alvanides and Dr van Heerden on obesogenic environments. In addition to the proposed mobility activities (skills and knowledge transfer), this collaboration will lead to a joint research proposal, developing an intervention for obese and overweight children that addresses attitudinal, behavioural and structural impediments to healthy living in a context of extreme poverty, violence and HIV exposure.

Professor Natasha Erlank, University of Johannesburg

Dr Joel Cabrita, University of Cambridge

New Histories of South African Christianity – promoting a critical research agenda into Christianity in South Africa.

NG150228                                           One-Year                                                            £10,000

While South Africa is a secular state, the majority of its 53 million inhabitants are professed Christians who regularly practice their faith. Christianity has significant currency in people’s daily lives and people speak as if it does. People also look to religious leaders for guidance in political matters. The project aims to break ground in the historical study of Christianity in Southern Africa. The collaborators – respectively based at the Universities of Johannesburg and Cambridge - seek to move beyond theoretical models that compartmentalize African Christians into static binaries of ‘modern’ versus ‘traditionalists’, or ‘Westernized’ Christians versus ‘Africanized’ Christians. Instead, the project will pursue an ambitious range of research questions that go beyond these dichotomies. Specifically, our project seeks to illuminate the complex convergences and crossovers that characterized Christian practice in Southern Africa, showing that Christians of different denominations and backgrounds were all influenced alike by shared moral and social visions. This collaborative partnership between the Universities of Johannesburg and Cambridge aims to achieve this through skills and knowledge transfer between established and early-career researchers, and postgraduate students. We will convene one workshop in Cambridge and two in Johannesburg, the final one will be dedicated to graduate student development.  By contributing to and promoting a critical research agenda into Christianity, and by disseminating findings beyond the academy and into society, this project will contribute to regional agendas and policies about the place of religion across a number of policy fields. The research programme, through exploring – for instance – the role of women religious leaders will contribute to a greater awareness and acceptance of what are mostly still patriarchal religious spaces. This will happen not only through the efforts of the principle researchers, but also through those of students in the projects, many of whom will be drawn from full-time employment, often as teachers or government officials (the traditional source of postgraduates at the University of Johannesburg).

 

Turkey

 

Dr Mahmut Nedim Ozdemir, Koç University

Dr Pinar Ozcan, University of Warwick

Exploring Barriers to Open Innovation in Emerging Countries: The Case of Turkey

NG150087                                           One-Year                                                            £9,000

Open innovation refers to the use of external sources of innovation to develop and market new solutions. It is the opposite of the traditional closed R&D that solely benefits from the internal know-how of the firm for innovation. Open innovation involves a wide variety of business practices such as crowdsourcing, licensing agreements, strategic R&D alliances and technology acquisitions. While open innovation practices have reduced the R&D costs and improved the quality of innovations of developed country firms, they have not been widely adopted by emerging country firms. Thus, this project aims to identify the main barriers to open innovation in emerging countries. Given limited theory and empirical evidence on our research question, we will conduct an inductive study using the multiple case study method. The setting is the manufacturing and service industries in Turkey where open innovation activities have remained low. The findings will make contributions to research on innovation and interfirm collaboration in emerging countries and offer solutions to managers and policymakers.

 

Dr Bilge Eris-Dereli, Marmara Universitesi

Dr Thijs van Rens, University of Warwick

Occupational Mobility and Labour Market Mismatch – addressing high unemployment in Turkey

NG150075                                           One-Year                                                            £9,700

The unemployment rate in Turkey has historically consistently been high compared to the European average. As a result, policy makers in Turkey are particularly interested in research on this topic. Mismatch on the labour market means there are jobs in some occupations and workers looking for jobs in others. Mismatch is an important reason that we observe unemployment, while at the same time firms are finding it difficult to fill positions. It is commonly assumed that barriers for workers to switch occupations, are the source of labour market mismatch, and that improved occupational mobility would therefore reduce unemployment. However, this may not be true if decisions about occupational mobility are not primarily driven by considerations of employability. We propose to investigate this hypothesis formally by measuring the effect of occupational mobility on unemployment. We will use a unique feature of the Turkish Labour Force Survey, which allows us to construct the counterfactual labour market conditions in the absence of occupational mobility. The research described here has the potential of contributing to our understanding of the underlying causes of high unemployment and will help in formulating appropriate policies to address the issue. The results will help us better understand unemployment in Turkey, but are likely to be informative about other countries as well.

 

Dr Ayten Zara, Istanbul Bilgi University

Professor Helen Payne, University of Hertfordshire

Somatisation and Depression: The BodyMind Approach as Treatment for Women in Turkey

NG150137                                           One-Year                                                            £6,995

This project aims to establish a women development/trauma recovery program to enhance the wellbeing and active participation of women in the society and in the economy in Turkey. The program will be developed through the collaboration of the School of Education of University of Hertfordshire (UH) in the UK and the School of Psychology of Istanbul Bilgi University in Turkey, initiating a new collaborative partnership. A pilot study will explore the potential benefits from employing a new treatment methodology ‘The BodyMind Approach’/TBMA™ (developed from research at The University of Hertfordshire, UK and currently being deployed in the National Health Service there) for women in Turkey suffering with a range of hard-to-explain physical symptoms with co-occurring depression. Levels of wellbeing, depression and symptom distress together with absenteeism and employment will be measured before and after the TBMA interventions for two groups of women, one group active and in work and the other not. Turkish researchers will be trained in TBMA for further research and practice.

 

Vietnam

 

Professor Hoc Dao, Water Resources University

Dr Oliver Hensengerth, Northumbria University

Proactively Living with Floods: Developing New Approaches to Flood Management in Vietnam's Mekong Delta

NG150072                                           One-Year                                                            £9,900

In the context of increasing risks and manifestations of climate change, rapid socio-economic change and major infrastructural interventions, including the construction of large upstreams dams in Cambodia and Laos, further empirical investigations of the potential for Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM) in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam are essential. In particular, further research is needed to clarify the steps necessary to effect a transition from a situation of reactive response to proactive risk reduction. A key strategy in this regard will be the identification and development of alternative narratives by which to live safely and harmoniously with flooding events. The project will bring into conversation established technical solutions and new academic thinking around participatory approaches. Of particular concern is the reconciliation of competing interests between rural, urban and coastal areas, agricultural and industrial sectors, and different government bureaucracies across the delta’s provinces.

 

Dr Thu Hoang, Hanoi University (HANU)

Dr Vikas Kumar, University of the West of England, Bristol

Developing Sustainable Green Practices in Vietnam: The Role of Green Transformational Leadership

NG150112                                           One-Year                                                            £9,700

Over the last decade, Vietnam has observed a period of rapid growth and has now become an attractive destination for foreign investment in South East Asia. This rapid transformation has put a lot of pressure on Vietnamese suppliers to match the global competition and at the same time adopt the green agenda. The aim of this research project is therefore to initiate a collaborative partnership between British and Vietnamese scholars to strengthen the research capacity to study the role of green transformational leadership in developing sustainable green practices among the Vietnamese Food suppliers. The primary objective is to contribute to the promotion of economic social welfare in Hanoi by transferring training to local researchers and business practitioners. The training will focus on educating local young researchers and practitioners on the role of transformational leadership and sustainable green business practices that can support transition towards more greener and sustainable economy.

 

Dr Vu Thang Pham, VNU University of Economics and Business

Dr Richard Hazenberg, University of Northampton

Vietnamese version of a 'Social Impact Matrix': Developing the Methodology of Culturally Applicable Social Impact Measurement for Vietnam

NG150052                                           One-Year                                                            £9,135

The social enterprise sector in Vietnam is currently seeking ways to sustainably solve the country’s social problems (i.e. high unemployment, poor health care and education, pollution). This proposal seeks to assist this development through collaboration between the Centre for Economic Development Studies (CEDS), University of Economics and Business, Vietnam and the Institute for Social Innovation and Impact (ISII), University of Northampton, UK to develop a social impact measurement approach that would be made available to social enterprises in Vietnam. This research would help Vietnamese social enterprises to measure their social impact, as despite the Vietnamese government’s awareness of the importance of social impact there is no existing Vietnamese tool with which to measure social impact. The research will build upon the University of Northampton’s innovative and newly developed ‘Social Impact Matrix’ (SIM). The SIM is already one of the UK’s leading social impact measurement tools (already adopted by Big Issue Invest, the Canal and River Trust and over 20 social enterprises).

 

Dr Quan Nguyen, National University of Civil Engineering

Dr Paul Chatterton, University of Leeds

Sustainable urban development - Developing a Housing Model Based on the Status-quality Trade Off Theory

NG150097                                           One-Year                                                            £10,000

Housing in Hanoi city has transformed from a social service into a goods in the market following the introduction of the Doi Moi (renovation) policy, which started in 1986. As a result, the segmentation of the nascent market in the capital city of 7 million residents poses complex problems for an equitable provision of housing environment to different income groups. A model of urban housing based on the interaction between the tangible and intangible attributes - the so-called status-quality trade off theory (SQTO) - seems to be able to achieve important results in price estimation using hedonic price index techniques with the emphasis placed on status-related elements. A survey of 1000 households within the core city of Hanoi has initially showed the potential of using SQTO as a tool for successful analysis of the house price dynamics and its spatial manifestation.