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Liverpool Hope University

UOA 39 - Politics and International Studies

RA5a: Research environment and esteem



Politics and International Studies (PaIS) in Liverpool Hope University (LHU) is based on a multi-disciplinary and cross-Faculty foundation. The entry comprises two distinct strands: (i) Politics; (ii) International Studies in the field of Business and Management. Researchers are drawn from the Politics and History department in the Arts and Humanities Deanery; Geography in the Sciences and Social Sciences Deanery; and the Hope Business School. The Politics research unit is recently established following the launch of an undergraduate degree in 2005; staff were previously returned to UoAs in History and Geography. International Business and Management (IBAM) has been building its research base over the period and has been strengthened through recent appointments at associate professor and professorial level (Weir and Thomas).
Research structure
Politics research is led by Holmes, and IBAM by Bamber.  The overall direction of research is the responsibility of the Research Committee, which reports directly to the University Senate. All research is managed in accordance with the Research and Scholarship Plan (2006-10) drawn up by the Research Committee. Each deanery is responsible for articulating its own research strategy within the parameters of the plan, with deans overseeing research as part of the annual monitoring processes. The research strategies of the deaneries are supported by a number of common aims, objectives and principles:
a)      Research groups
Research is promoted through the establishment and development of research groups. Hope formally recognises such groups as areas of research strength. They are identified through a process of application and peer review. This system facilitates:
- targeting of resources for research purposes
- strategic articulation of research development plans
- mentoring of junior research staff
- recruitment of research students.
With its multi-disciplinary and collaborative elements, PaIS has across the period contributed to a range of research groups including Social and Political Studies; War and Peace Studies; Diaspora Studies. PaIS has now crystallised around the two research areas identified: Politics and International Business and Management (IBAM).
Politics consists of Rob Busby, Michael Holmes, Duncan Light and Robert Mikecz. Within Politics, work is carried out in the areas of political institutions (Michael Holmes on political parties, Rob Busby on political executives) and post-socialist transitions (Duncan Light on Romania, Robert Mikecz on Estonia and Hungary, and Michael Holmes on EU enlargement).
IBAM focuses on international development and inter-cultural studies, management development, joint ventures, human resource management, pedagogic research (including institutional effectiveness measurement), Total Quality Management and post-colonial themes; it consists of David Weir, David Bamber, Amos Thomas, Martin Samy and Chalen Westaby. IBAM undertakes collaborative cross-cultural research, and business and management research in international settings.
b)      Recognised researcher status
The university established its ‘recognised researcher’ programme in 2006 and deanery research strategies encourage their staff to seek this status. All members of PaIS applied for and were awarded ‘recognised researcher’ status, giving them additional research support and priority in applying for internal research funding. ‘Recognised researcher’ status entitles staff to:
1)      additional research leave allowance above the contracted minimum
2)      priority access to internal research funds
3)      redistribute other duties in order to create more time for research
Individual research activity is managed and monitored through annual staff performance reviews. These sessions review past activity, set future targets, and identify areas for staff development. The review process is a key mechanism through which managers identify upcoming periods of time-pressure and accommodate this in workload models.
c)      Staff development and recruitment
There is clear and consistent strategic intent at Hope to strengthen research, with a range of internal supports to facilitate the research careers of staff. 
Support includes:
- regular research seminars involving internal deanery members and invited speaker
- the running of research development programmes
- generous funding to attend conferences both nationally and internationally
- mentoring support for junior researchers, such as Chalen Westaby
- assistance in establishing research activities
Transparent strategies are in place for the promotion of research active staff, which prioritise and reward research expertise. Biennially, there are open invitations to apply for Associate Professorship or Professorship status. Liverpool Hope runs regular workshops to support staff in their promotion aspirations, which ensures that the criteria are transparent and enables staff to manage developmental needs.
There is a clear institutional strategy to appoint at professorial level in key areas where research leadership is required. The Pro-Vice Chancellor (Research and Academic Development) has primary responsibility for academic staff recruitment, and all new members of the academic team are expected to be active researchers. Several PaIS staff have been appointed on this basis. Recently, this process included the appointment of two Professorial and one Associate Professorial appointments in PaIS, all with substantial international and comparative research expertise. Those appointments include Professors David Weir and Beverly Metcalfe (November 2007), and Associate Professor Amos Thomas. The Associate Professor grade indicates the commitment to internationalism and research. A Chair in Politics and History will be advertised in 2007/8.
d)      Multi-disciplinary research
Deanery research strategy includes a commitment to the promotion of multi-disciplinary research and this is at the core of PaIS research development, as detailed above. By its overall composition and the composition of its sub-groups, the PaIS group is inherently multi-disciplinary.
e)      Internationalism
In November 2005 the “Hope-Bangalore Institute of Business, Management and Leadership” was set up. Dr Bamber was approved as Research Fellow of the institute, leading fifteen Research Members (India and UK). The strategic developments continued with the appointment of Dr Samy to further develop staff research competences that leads to presentations at international conferences and the on-going submissions of peer-reviewed journal articles.
PaIS is building on its international experience: multi-disciplinary and collaborative activities with members of other institutions are fostered, developed and strengthened, based on the model of the existing Hope-Bangalore project and its active three year research plan. Individual areas of research expertise and excellence will be sustained while allowing the further development of the co-ordinated PaIS research profile. PaIS participates in the work of the Global Cultures Centre that links Liverpool Hope research to multi-cultural groups in the Liverpool community.
f)        Research students and infrastructure
In 2006 Liverpool Hope gained a licence from Liverpool University to supervise its own research degrees. This allows PaIS to supervise its own research degree candidates and Hope is continuing with its application for its own research degree awarding powers.
Liverpool Hope seeks to involve external advisors in the research student experience, in addition to their internal supervisory team. This is in order to extend the Hope research networks, to hold research workshops with PhD candidates and other researchers:
- Dr. Pavel Castka (University of Canterbury, NZ) on ISO 26000 and CSR
- Dr. James Boyce (OLC Europe Ltd., Bolton) on e-commerce
- Tanja Rabl (Bayreuth,) on quantitative modelling
- Prof. David Walker (Birmingham,) on place branding
- Prof. John Burgoyne (Lancaster) on management learning
A dedicated Research and Graduate Centre (PGC) has been established at Hope, This hosts the university’s Research Office and provides offices for visiting and associate research staff. It also includes a common room with kitchen facilities for research students, and seminar rooms with priority use for research seminars, conferences and postgraduate teaching. IBAM holds monthly PhD workshops and research staff development activities in the PGC.
Hope’s library hosts a wide range of print and electronic information sources, including: JSTOR, ProQuest, Emerald, Science Direct, Swetswise, NetLibrary and the Expanded Academic Index. Researchers also have access to other regional libraries; University of Liverpool; John Moores University and John Rylands Library, Manchester.
g) Visiting Speaker Programmes
A key aspect of our existing research structure has been regular visiting speakers from both academic and professional circles. The programme is organised in conjunction with research groups across Hope, and has an inter-disciplinary element.

i)      “War and Peace Studies” (2004-2006)
This was part of the activities of the War and Peace Studies research group and the Desmond Tutu Centre for War and Peace Studies; speakers included:
Prof. Anthony Parel ( Calgary) “Gandhi, War and Peace”,
Prof. Rajmohan Gandhi ( Illinois) “Promoting peace today”
Prof. Jim McAuley (Huddersfield) “Reconciliation in Northern Ireland”,
Prof. Robbie Barnett (Columbia) “Chinese Policy in Tibet”,
Prof. John Sloboda (Oxford & Keele ) “Global responses to global threats: sustainable security for the 21st Century”,
Prof. Ed Cairns (Ulster) “The conflict in Northern Ireland”,
Dr Roger MacGinty (York) “No war, no peace: why do so many peace processes fail?”
Imam Muhammad Ashafa  and the Rev. James Movel Wuye (Joint Directors of the Inter-Faith Mediation Centre in Kaduna, Nigeria) “From War to Peace: Muslim and Christian Reconciliation in Nigeria”,
The Very Reverend Nicholas Frayling (Dean of Chichester) “Is there any alternative to pardon and peace?” 
Archbishop Desmond Tutu “Ours is a moral universe”,
Dr. Andrew Sola (Maryland) “Just War Theory in Crisis”,
Dr. Niaz Shah ( Hull) “Al-Qaeda, the Koran and the Politics of Terrorism”.
ii) Deanery of Humanities (2004-2007)
This series includes speakers from a  range of disciplines covering all aspects of the Deanery of Humanities. A specific politics component has been included in the series:
Dr. Simon Lightfoot (Liverpool John Moores)  “EU environmental policy”,
Dr. Andy Storey (University College Dublin) “The EU and development policy”,
Charles Yankiah (Liverpool City Council) “Local government in Liverpool,
Martin Wainwright (Northern editor, Guardian newspaper) “Politics and the media
Frank Field (Labour Party), “Developments in social policy”.
iii) “Politics and Citizenship” public lecture series (2007-2008)
Organised in conjunction with the Abdullah Quilliam Society, a Muslim community organisation based in Liverpool. A joint series of public lectures on themes relating to citizenship,
Dr. Mohammed Siddiqe Seddon ( Cardiff) “Islam in British politics and society”,
Prof. Akbar Ahmed (Ibn Khaldun Chair of Islamic Studies, American University, and Brookings Institution) “The relationship between the West and Islam”.
h)      Visiting professors
LHU policy attracts visiting professors (eminent researchers from the UK and abroad) who are actively involved in its scholarly life and work and who, during their visits, run seminars and assist staff with academic and research development:
Prof. John West-Burnham :Nursery Management.
Prof. Michael Adams Perpetual Trustees Australia Professor of Financial Services Law (appointed Chair) and Professor of Corporate Law at the University of Technology, Sydney.
Further Visiting Professors are to be engaged support ongoing and developing research.
External Research Income

a)     Duncan Light: research grants for “Politics of post-socialist transition in Romania”:
1)      Elisabeth Barker Fund, British Academy: ‘Renaming of streets in Bucharest during the early communist period’, 2002.
2)      Leverhulme Research Fellowship, Leverhulme Trust:  “Dracula tourism and National Identity in Romania”, 2003.

b)     Amos Thomas: grants in collaboration with colleagues in Australia for research that has “Cultural implications in the Asia – Pacific region”:
1)      Australia Research Council Discovery Grant: €35,000 share of a nationally competitive grant worth €140,000 for research (2002-2004) “Format flows in the Asia/Pacific region: economic, legal and cultural implications” [as joint chief investigator with Drs. Albert Moran, Michael Keane and Justin Malbon].
2)      Australia Research Council, €5,000 share of a nationally competitive grant worth €15,000 (2000-2002) research on “International television program format trade: a pilot study” [Dr. Albert Moran chief investigator, Dr. Michael Keane co-investigator]
c)     David Weir: research grants in collaboration with colleagues for international cross-cultural studies in areas related to Business and Management:
1)      Lancaster University and International University of Monaco: £135,000 for a study of the role of the police sergeant: 2004-2007.  2 Reports produced.
2)      Vrije University Amsterdam and other EU institutions: £150,000 for a study of the Cultural Factors in IT access: 2005-2007. Report produced and book published.
3)      Sunderland University and a group of Lebanese Universities: £100,000 for a study of Quality Assurance Structures in HE in Lebanon (ongoing).

d) Martin Samy: grants in Australia: researching “Accounting practices”, now continuing in other International settings. The QSIA instrument developed by Dr Samy is the Intellectual Property of Monash University, with ongoing development;
1)      OSP Grant AU$5,000, Business and Economics Faculty, Monash University, 2004.
2)      PhD Completion Grant AU$5,000, Department of Accounting and Finance, Monash University, 2005.
3)      Department Grant AU$2,000, Department of Accounting and Finance for participation in research mentoring committee, Monash University, 2005.
4)      Department Grant AU$6,000, Department of Accounting and Finance to research project “Superannuation and Savings - Perceptions and attitudes of the next generation”. Project completion 2007.
5)      Not for Profit and Public Sector Research Grant AU$4,700, CPA Australia for project on “Management accounting and control changes in health sector: the case of a not-for-profit hospital in Victoria” with Nandan R. Project, completion December 2008.

e)     David Bamber: funding including from private sources, research that has impact at regional and national levels related to Business Development in the UK:
1)      £25,000 Research Fellowship [2001-2002], University of Salford (Project Manager Professor John Sharp), funded by Training For Excellence Ltd. (TFE) through a series of ESF and DfEE projects, evaluated training courses for four-hundred employees working in Small and Medium sized Enterprises (SMEs). 8 reports produced.
2)      £2,000 Business Development, OLC (Europe) Ltd. funded by British Waterways [2005]. 1 report produced “The standardisation of lock gate design”.
3)      £9,900 Business Development funded by Age Concern Services (Liverpool) Ltd. “Marketing Research and Operational Strategy Development” (ongoing).

Research strategy

The PaIS research team has a set of objectives and activities to be pursued over the next 5 years:

a) Programme of visiting speakers
The group will enhance existing visiting speaker programmes, ensuring a mix of speakers (academics and practitioners) and pitched at various levels (students, academics and the wider public). PaIS will continue to extend the range of visiting professors with research interests congruent with PaIS research.

b) Conferences and symposia in Liverpool Hope
PaIS will develop a programme of research conferences and symposia in Hope.
1)      Workshop symposium “The Left and the EU Constitutional Treaty”, Michael Holmes
2)      Workshop conference “Sport and Politics”, Michael Holmes with Political Studies Association (Sport and Politics group) February 2008.
3)      Managing Diversity in Early Years Management, January 2008, Petra Luck.
4)       International Conference “Beyond Transition, 20 Years' Progress”, June 2009, Bamber and Mikecz.

c) External research grants
PaIS organises training events to facilitate members applying for external research grants. The aim will be to secure at least one such grant per member over the next five years. Projects identified include:
1)      Prof. Antony Carty (Aberdeen) and Chalen Westaby to investigate 19th archives of Africa and European diplomatic relations to understanding legal advice tendered to British Officials. 
2)      Research into the delivery, effectiveness of training and government policy for Early Years Managers in Romania, Bulgaria, Belgium, Portugal and Slovenia.
3)      Development of the cross-cultural programme of the Hope-Bangalore Institute of Business, Management and Leadership.

d) Internal research status and developing research competence
All members of PaIS will be expected to maintain their status as Recognised Researchers through attendance at conferences and publications. They will be expected to use Recognised Researcher status to apply for additional internal research funding support. PaIS continues to mentor seven members of Hope staff undertaking research degrees and actively develops the research competencies of staff at other institutions, such as Christ College Bangalore. 
Chalen Westaby, researching in the field of post-colonial corporate governance and law, is a young researcher initially engaged in September 2005. Hence, she is submitted with one paper and is currently undergoing supervisor training. 
Hope Business School has an on-going policy of appointment of research students with fee waivers and bursaries and currently three research students are engaged on bursaries for PhDs in Hope Business School. PaIS team supervises 11 PhD candidates at LHU and at other Universities; 
Bamber (1 LHU, bursary pre July 2007; 3 LHU, post July 2007)
Samy (1 Monash)
Weir (3 Lancaster, 2 Portsmouth, 1 Mauritius; all pre July 2007). 
Since its foundation in 2005, the Hope-Bangalore institute has been undertaking UK-India comparative research in four main areas of Marketing, Corporate Social Responsibility, Leadership and Change Management and IBAM continues to be the dynamo for this research institute.
PaIS has presented over 50 peer reviewed research papers at international conferences. The majority of these papers are co-authored with academics at LHU who are new to research and it is a matter of policy to promote that research for publication in high grade journals.
Indicators of esteem

Journal editorships, membership of editorial boards
Duncan Light
, joint editor special edition “Political Geography” on Central and Eastern Europe
Robert Mikecz, reviewer “International Journal of Research Trends in Social Sciences”, Robert Mikecz, external reviewer for Amfiteatru Economic, journal of the Bucharest Academy of Economic Sciences.
David Weir, Journal of Islamic Finance, Economics and Management (Chair), the Middle East Business Review, Arab Journal of Administration, Disaster Prevention and Management, European Business Review, Journal of Emergent  Economies. Editor Special Edition: Management Decision on Poetry and Management: Editor Special Edition: Thunderbird International Review: The Silk Road.
Amos Thomas, Botswana Journal of Business [2007-present], Advisory board member, Scientific Journals International [2006-present], Editorial board member, International Journal of Business and Society [2005-present] and Editorial board member, Global Business Review [2002-present].
Martin Samy, associate editor - International Journal of Learning, Common Ground Publishing [2004 and 2005], associate editor – International Journal on Knowledge, Culture and Change Management [2006] and editor – International Journal of Economic Sciences and Applied Research [2007]
David Bamber, reviewer “Management Decisions”, 2nd International Conference on Systems Thinking in Management [2002] and session chair HAAMAHA 2007 conference, Poznan University, Poland.

Keynote addresses
Michael Holmes
, roundtable discussion “Ireland and India”, Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi, and roundtable discussion  “The future of the European Constitutional Treaty,” annual conference of the Political Studies Association of Ireland (PSAI), Belfast
Robert Mikecz
, keynote speaker, conference “Relations between Higher Education and the Economy”, College for Modern Business Studies, Tatabánya, Hungary.
David Weir, keynote address “Organisation Development in the Arab Middle East”, International Organisation Development Association 2006
David Weir
, symposium leader, Academy of Management in Atlanta, 2006

Organisation of conferences or symposia
Michael Holmes
, panel convenor, “Ireland and the EU”, annual conference of the University Association for Contemporary European Studies (UACES), Belfast,  2002. Symposium convenor, “Ireland and the future of the European Union”,  LHU, 2003.
Duncan Light
, panel convenor, “Communist heritage tourism”, annual conference, Association of American Geographers, Chicago, 2006; convenor of two sessions, “Post-socialism”, annual conference, Royal Geographical Society-Institute of British Geographers, 2006; convenor of two sessions, “21st century Europe”, annual conference of Royal Geographical Society – Institute of British Geographers, 2007.
Robert Mikecz
, chair of two sessions, “Commerce and Competitiveness: Management, Marketing, Business Communication, and Business Strategies”, 2006 International Conference on Commerce, Academy of Economic Studies, Bucharest; session chair “Post-socialist urbanization in global context”, annual conference, Royal Geographical Society, London, 2006.
David Bamber
, co-organiser “2nd International Conference on Systems Thinking in Management”, University of Salford, 2002.
David Weir
, Symposium Leader, “Management in the Arab Middle East” Academy of Management conference 2006; Co-Chair “Professional Development Workshop on Critical Management into Critical practice” Academy of Management conference 2006 and Co-presenter “Special workshop on Organisational Crisis”, Academy of Management conference 2006. David Weir has also presented at Academy of Management Conferences 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007; at EURAM conferences 2002, 2003, 2006, at EGOS conference 2004, 2007; at Critical Management Studies Conference 2005, 2007; at Leadership Conference 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007. He was reviewer of submissions for Academy of Management, BAM, EURAM, CMS; with articles reviewed for Management Decision, European Business Journal, Journal of Management, Spirituality and Religion, Journal of Islamic and Middle East Finance, Economics and Management.

Policy advice
Michael Holmes worked as a consultant on Irish politics for the Economist Intelligence Unit from 2003 to 2004, advising on drafts of monthly reports on Ireland prior to publication by the EIU.
David Weir
presented two reports for Sergeants Committee of the Police Federation of England and Wales and gave policy advice to Islamic Development Bank (Jeddah, Saudi Arabia) 2003 involving change programmes with senior management.

Awards and prizes
Michael Holmes, British Council award for contribution to the UACES annual conference, Zagreb, September 2005. Conference grant, Europe in the World Centre, University of Liverpool, 2004 (£500), for attendance of two overseas academics at a workshop conference in LHU in February 2004, which culminated in the publication of Ireland and the European Union: Nice, enlargement and the future of Europe (ed. M. Holmes, 2006). He received a research grant, Irish Labour Party, 2006 (€2000), for a survey of Labour Party members which formed part of the book The development of the Irish Labour Party’s European policy: from opposition to support.
David Weir
was awarded several Primes for research at his previous institution, Ceram (France) and is a Distinguished Visiting Professor at the ETQM College, Dubai. Awarded "Best paper in track" for a presentation at the British Academy of Management 2006.

International recognition
Michael Holmes, EU politics research group in the Political Studies Association of Ireland (PSAI) and a member of the Institute of Trans-Cultural Studies based in Lyon, with Guest lectures in the Université Jean Moulin – Lyon III (December 2005), Universidad Católica de San Antonio, Murcia (March 2007) and Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (October 2007).
David Bamber, Fellow of the College of Teachers and Research Fellow with the “Hope-Bangalore Institute of Business, Management and Leadership”.
David Weir
is developing a research programme with colleagues at ETQM College on Knowledge Management in the Arab Middle East that has already produced several publications.

External examining
Michael Holmes
, external examiner “European Studies”, Liverpool John Moores University [2003 – 2007] responsibility for both BA in European Studies and  MA in European Studies; external validator, “Politics: People and Power” undergraduate degree, University of Worcester, January 2006; External consultant, the Higher Education Training and Awards Council, Ireland, [2004 – 2006], participating on undergraduate and postgraduate degree reviews in a number of Irish third-level institutions.
David Weir
assessor for Chairs and senior appointments at several Universities and most recently at Bristol Business School, University of West of England, 2005; examined PhDs for St Andrews, Cranfield, UWE, Plymouth, Sunderland, Lincoln, South Australia, Mauritius.
Promotion of PaIS 
Rob Busby
, contributed to Politics newsletters intended to promote the discipline in schools; articles include “The American Presidency: imperial or imperilled?” (Politics review, November 2002), “The Republican revival” (Talking politics, April 2002) and “Third party politics in the United States” (Talking politics, April 2005).

Development of new collaborative programmes with other Institutions
The Hope-Bangalore research model will link with other research institutes such as the Tusami University Tanzania by providing supervision for research degrees two years on site at LHU and one year off site, at the partner institutions. The university is proceeding with operational aspects of this research degree programme and is also developing quality assurance procedures. Other initiatives are based on the progressive involvement of Hope faculty in projects such as the UK, France and Lebanon programme on Management Education quality structures (Weir), joint research with Monash University (Samy, Metcalfe, Weir) and joint research with Aberdeen University on post-colonial institutional governance (Westaby).

Membership of external research networks
Michael Holmes,
Ireland correspondent for the European Parties, Elections and Referendums Network (EPERN), based in the Sussex European Institute, University of Sussex. Two reports on the EU dimension of two elections in the Republic of Ireland: on the 2004 European Parliament election (available online at and on the 2007 general election (available online at associate of the Europe and the World Centre at the University of Liverpool since 2003. Guest speaker at the Centre and is cooperating with them to host a workshop conference on the Left in the EU in 2008.
Duncan Light,    Post-socialist Geographies Research Group: part of the Royal Geographical Society-Institute of British Geographers.
Robert Mikecz, committee member of the Post-Socialist Geographies Research Group of the Royal Geographical Society, a member of the UK Baltic Study Group, a member of the Higher Education Academy, and a rapporteur for the Economic and Social Research Council.
David Weir, member of the Arts, Aesthetics, Creativity, and Organization Research Network (Aacorn). Since 2000 Visiting Professor in Management Development at Lancaster University School of Management.