Supporting People After Remand or Conviction (SPARC): An Innovation in Pre-Custody Care

The journey through the criminal justice system is turbulent and changes the life-course, for better or worse, of large numbers of people (Bierie and Mann, 2017). The Supporting People After Remand or Conviction (SPARC) project was set up by Lincolnshire Action Trust and HMP Lincoln to meet the Bradley Report (2009) recommendations. SPARC provides a fully integrated service to people sentenced or remanded by the courts, in their transition into prison custody. SPARC aims to assist those entering prison to meet their basic needs and ensure better treatment with transparency and fairness. This provides them with a better opportunity to engage in their prison sentences, address their behaviour and successfully reintegrate into the community. Conducted in partnership with the University of Lincoln, SPARC data assessed the needs of people at the point of entering into custody and tested the impact of the model.
Men who received the SPARC intervention displayed significantly higher levels of wellbeing. Focus group feedback indicated short and long-term impact. SPARC is an effective model in which the specific needs of prisoners are better addressed when entering prison custody.

Supporting People Affected by Cancer: Partnership Working with Macmillan Cancer Support

Macmillan Cancer Support is made up of a network of millions of professionals, volunteers, campaigners and people affected by cancer and is one of the UK’s largest charities.

In November 2013, the UoL signed a formal partnership agreement with Macmillan. From the outset Dr Ros Kane was a member of the steering group charged with directing and co-ordinating activities across three key areas: volunteering, student experience, and research.

The presentation will provide an overview of the on-going collaboration between UoL and Macmillan Cancer Support from the perspective of both organisations. It will outline the benefits of the partnership and some of the research that has taken place.

To date, we have collaborated on six funded studies with Macmillan, all focused on examining ways to help improve the lives of people affected by cancer. This has included funding (matched by the School of Health and Social Care) to support the employment of a full-time Macmillan Research Fellow. His PhD topic ‘Differences between urban and rural self-management’ being an agreed priority research area for Macmillan. The partnership with Macmillan has led to widespread regional, national and international collaborations and research activity, and continues to have the potential for broad impact.

Improving primary care for people with insomnia in Lincolnshire and beyond

Sleep is fundamental to wellbeing, affecting health, sickness, life, death, mental function, productivity, and the wider economy. Insomnia, the commonest psychological disorder, affecting 40% of adults annually and 10% long-term, is poorly managed. Members of the Community and Health Research Unit (CaHRU) have led research into primary care of insomnia over the past two decades, working with major academic institutions (Oxford, Manchester, Glasgow, Ghent), service users, staff and healthcare organisations, locally, nationally and internationally. Using systematic reviews, observational and qualitative studies, quasi-experiments and trials, we have explored how primary care for sleep might be improved using psychological treatments, and what effect this is having on sleep, prescribing, and health outcomes. This has led to publication of two major randomised control trials in the past year showing benefits of psychological sleep treatment on prevention of mental health and daytime functioning. We also describe our ongoing work with Lincolnshire general practices on a major multi-centre trial, the Health professional Administered Brief Insomnia Therapy (HABIT) study, funded by National Institute for Health Research (£1.8M), investigating the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of sleep restriction therapy in primary care. Prof Niro Siriwardena will be joined by Lincolnshire practice nurse Helen Todd, working on the HABIT trial.

First forays into the new obesity data landscape: a review of published research using emerging forms of data

In order to study human society, social scientists draw upon a variety of information, including measurements of societal or individual phenomena – data. It is an enduring challenge to capture appropriate data to help understand complex societal issues. Many researchers are, therefore, keen to explore the potential of new sources of data. Collection of data – your data, our data – has become ever-present in today’s digitally connected landscape, so it is important to balance the potential benefit to our understanding against legitimate concerns regarding data use. ‘Big Data’ has been both heralded as a panacea and demonised as unethical. This talk presents part of a collaborative project, the ESRC Strategic Network for Obesity, in which we summarised ways that new forms of data had been used creatively in academic obesity literature. Data from sources as varied as transport cameras to fitness trackers, from retail sales to social media, have already been used to investigate diet or physical activity. These data offered unique opportunities in scope, population access, objectivity and immediacy. At the same time, there are critical questions regarding the appropriateness of ‘repurposing’ data for obesity research: issues of data access and ownership, data quality and representativeness of the population.

Ethical issues in self funded care: co-producing knowledge with older people

The number of older people funding their care has increased in the context of transformations in statutory social care, the impact of austerity and successive cuts to social care funding. There is little research on self-funded care, despite its significance to policy and practice and older people’s perspectives are marginalized in policy and practice.

This three-site study takes an innovative approach to researching self-funding through ‘co-production’ with older people and knowledge exchange with key stakeholders. By co-production we mean: (1) knowledge rooted in older people’s experiences that is (2) generated through a research process involving older co-researchers at all stages which is then (3) brought into dialogue with commissioners, service providers and practitioners in knowledge exchange groups.
This presentation will present emergent findings from three interviews carried out with older people over an eighteen-month period. The findings highlight the complexities surrounding securing self-funded care and the range of experiences older people report in managing their own care.

Can air quality monitors protect children from air pollution on the school run?

According to the Royal College of Physicians, air pollution is linked to around 40,000 premature deaths each year in the UK. Posing several other risks to human health, it is associated with increased rates of lung cancer, emphysema, bronchitis and other respiratory infections. Due to their ongoing development, the risks to children are even more acute. This has long been recognised by the UK Government, but its efforts at reducing air pollution have been repeatedly deemed inadequate by both the High Court and the UN. In the absence of government action, and in response to a growing awareness of such harms, individuals and community groups are increasingly making use of personal, internet-enabled air quality monitors to evaluate environmental risk. Much has been written about the accuracy of these monitors, but little research exists on the attitudinal and behavioural responses to the data they produce. This paper outlines some preliminary findings from the world’s largest study of its type, which seeks to understand how parents/carers respond to the data provided on the school run. By gaining insight into such reactions, it is hoped that the role of the human within this wave of emerging technology can be better understood.


Face recognition in the real world

You use your face to verify your identity in lots of situations, from picking up a parcel at the post office to going through border control. Each time you use photo-ID, someone is required to check that your face matches your ID document. Our research has shown that this process of matching an unfamiliar face to a photo is in fact very difficult, even for people like passport controllers. In this talk, I will describe some of our work on face recognition in the real world, and show how we have used this as a springboard to engage publics with our research through various different routes.