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About the group

The Solent Identities and Inequalities Research Group (SIIR) is a community of research-active scholars situated across a range of disciplines in the Department of Sport and Health and Department of Social Sciences and Nursing.

Our members’ research expertise includes, but is not limited to: gender, sexuality, disability, Global South studies, poverty and social exclusion, social and economic justice, youth cultures, sport and physical activity, and health inequalities.

We are a supportive space to further develop research ideas, work on collaborative funded research projects, peer mentorship and a range of other scholarly activities.

SIIR is chaired by Dr Rory Magrath.

Key themes

SIIR is a multidisciplinary research group with interest in a range of disciplines. As a Group, we are committed (albeit not restricted) to the following themes:

  • Equality, diversity and inclusion
  • ‘Lived’ identities
  • Empowerment, activism and social change
  • Cultural representation
  • Power, policy and social justice

Who we are

SIIR is chaired by Dr Rory Magrath, and our membership consists of numerous members of the Department of Social Sciences and Nursing and Department of Sport and Health.

More information about the group can be found below.


Rory Magrath is Associate Professor of Sociology. His research focuses on declining homophobia, and the subsequent impact on contemporary masculinities, with a particular focus on professional sport. He has authored, co-authored or edited seven books, over 20 journal articles and multiple book chapters, and co-edits the Palgrave Studies in Masculinity, Sport and Exercise book series (with Jamie Cleland and Eric Anderson).  

View Rory’s profile on Pure

Kola Adeosun is a researcher of educational philosophy and sport. His current research interests revolve around the intersectionality of race and educational development in sporting programmes of change. As a result, Kola has conducted research in Africa, The Caribbean, Europe and North America to understand how sporting programmes promote educational attainment for minority groups.

View Kola’s profile on Pure

Karen Arm is a working-class academic with research interests in social justice and equity in higher education policy and practice. She is committed to understanding and addressing the differentials in academic experience and outcomes of university students from disadvantaged backgrounds

View Karen’s profile on Pure

Garfield Benjamin’s research and teaching focus on societal issues with technology. They are particularly interested in how our identities are constructed with and through technologies, as well as the many forms of inequalities that are produced through the inequitable ways technology is used in society. Their recent work has built on queer and intersectional critiques to examine social media platforms, AI, data, privacy and algorithms.

View Garfield’s profile on Pure

Karen Burnell, Associate Professor of Applied Psychology, is a Chartered research psychologist and University Research Lead for Social Research and Social Policy. She specialises in exploring the psychological changes that occur throughout the adult lifespan, with a particular focus on how events in life challenge perceptions of the self (identity), the impact of these challenges on wellbeing, and how these challenges can be overcome through psychosocial and narrative interventions to improve health and wellbeing.

View Karen’s profile on Pure

Amy Duvenage is a lecturer in criminology whose research focuses on decoloniality, gender and intersectionality and thought from the Global South.

View Amy’s profile on Pure

Having just completed her PhD, Ahlem Lezerad is a lecturer in criminology and a researcher in home-grown Islamist radicalisation and sense of belonging. Her research interests also include ethnicity/religion, sense of belonging/identity, international radicalisation, White extremism, terrorism, global wars and geopolitics. Comparative research is also an important parameter of her research interests.

View Ahlem’s profile on Pure

Brian McDonough has researched social inequalities linked to precarious work and unemployment, investigating how these might be overcome with changes to welfare and social policy. These ideas are most recently discussed in his co-authored text Universal Basic Income (Routledge, 2020). He also continues to investigate the use of automated technologies in the workplace and how these change social communication and workplace identities. See his new edited textbook, Sociology of Work and Organisation: A Global Perspective (also with Routledge, forthcoming in 2023).

View Brian’s profile on Pure

Catherine Phipps completed her PhD at the University of Greenwich in 2019, exploring LGBT+ inclusion in university sport. Her research focuses on gender relations, sexuality and gender identity in sport, with a current focus on social media abuse.

View Catherine’s profile on Pure

Esther Snell is a senior lecturer in criminology.

View Esther’s profile on Pure

David Webber is the course leader on the BSc (Hons) Football Studies degree at Solent University. His principal research interest lies in the political economy of football and he has published a growing number of publications in the often-intersecting fields of football fan culture, class, consumption, governance, globalisation, finance, British politics, and international development.

View David’s profile on Pure

Niamh Wade is a lecturer in criminology. Her research interests include community justice, therapeutic jurisprudence, probation supervision, and justice innovation.

View Niamh's profile on Pure

Key events

SIIR meet together monthly as a network for peer support, regularly hosting reading groups, writing retreats and collaborative research development.

Members are also involved in a range of other events, including those aligned to learned societies and those linked to industry.

To view a list of upcoming and past events, please check out our Eventbrite page.

The Future of Football: Mapping Progress and Alternatives football research symposium

Join us for this one-day hybrid symposium that will critically examine the challenges and crises currently facing football and map out more progressive and sustainable visions and alternatives that might reshape the future of the game.

Find out more and register

Get in touch

If you are interested in joining the Group, or finding out more about what we do, please contact us on:

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