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Goldsmiths’ Department of Sociology is one of the largest in the UK. We have an established reputation for our contribution to contemporary sociological thought, and offer a vibrant and expanding research culture. We have a wide range of staff who lead research in their specialist fields, a lively mixture of students, and excellent facilities. In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework, we were placed in the top ten universities in the UK for the quality of our research. The Department is committed to excellence in teaching and learning, and we achieved the highest judgement of ‘confidence’ in a recent QAA developmental engagement.
Staff have been awarded research grants by the ESRC, the AHRC, the Leverhulme Trust, the Wellcome Trust, the Health Education Authority, the Nuffield Trust, the Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation, and a variety of government departments and charitable trusts. We carry out collaborative research with academics in other UK universities and in Australia, Canada, Europe, and the United States. Each year we welcome leading international researchers as Visiting Fellows in the Department, and in the Centre for Urban and Community Research, the Centre for the Study of Invention and Social Process and the Centre for the Study of Global Media and Democracy, which we jointly sponsor. We publish widely in the form of books, contributions to journals, and press articles.
We are committed to developing the discipline of sociology by involving all members of the Department in research and scholarship in a national and international context; to furthering knowledge and theory; and to the understanding and improvement of contemporary social conditions, practices and policies. We link teaching at postgraduate level with staff research specialisms, to their mutual benefit. As a result, postgraduate work takes place within a stimulating and challenging research culture.
We also have a commitment to engaging with contemporary issues, as shown in our work on ‘race’, ethnicity and racism; gender and sexuality; class; culture and performing arts; markets and consumer culture; biomedicine, biotechnology and psychiatric illness; urban life and the inner city; culture and technology; and politics, law and governance. We have a strong emphasis on theoretical sociology, and on the development of rigorous approaches to sociological issues, in integration with advanced methods of analysis.
The thriving research culture of the Centre for Urban and Community Research has enabled it to develop an international reputation in several areas, notably ‘race’, asylum, refugees, identity; residence, housing, associational politics; community participation, participatory democracy, regeneration; and photography and visual cultures.
The Centre for the Study of Invention and Social Process aims to develop innovative projects and creative research that bring together science, technology and the arts in order to explore, for example, the nature of interdisciplinarity, the methodological relation between sociology and design, and the potential intellectual impact of ‘lost’ thinkers such as Whitehead and Tarde. The Unit for Global Justice studies both the legal and ethical implications of contemporary social change and the role that law itself plays in a rapidly changing world. The Unit aims to bring together researchers and practitioners concerned with changing social and technical forms and their implications for how we understand law and justice.
The future of democracy is inseparable from the capacities of media – at all scales from the local to the global. Both the sustainability and the expansion of democracy depend on what media institutions do and what spaces media make possible. The complexity of these processes requires interdisciplinary research across politics, sociology and media. The Centre for the Study of Global Media and Democracy was set up in September 2007 to address these connections. The Centre brings together researchers from Goldsmiths’ Departments of Media and Communications, Sociology, and Politics. It hosts public lectures and debates, research symposia, and seminar series.
The interdisciplinary Centre for Cultural Studies, launched in 1997, organises many research activities relevant to students in Sociology.
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We live in a time of profound cultural, social and political changes, and this degree in Critical & Creative Analysis is designed to equip you with conceptual and analytical tools to understand and engage these developments in thoughtful and inventive ways. Read more
This MA introduces you to recent debates on gender in the disciplines of sociology and media and communications studies, and to the interdisciplinary domains of feminist social and cultural theory. Read more
This MA examines contemporary issues concerning justice. You will learn how to conceptualise and study the possibilities of human rights, going beyond legal formulations to look at the conditions in which human rights claims are made. Read more
The MSc Social Research is an advanced degree in social scientific methodology. It is suited to those who wish to prepare for PhD research or for those who want to increase key employability skills in the areas of qualitative fieldwork, quantitative data management, and data analytics. Read more
The MPhil/PhD in Visual Sociology offers you the opportunity to combine written sociological argument with film, sound, or photographic representation. It will allow new researchers to re-think both the conduct of social research and the forms that social research writing takes in the 21st century. Read more