Announcing our judging panel for the UK Data Service 2017 Dissertation Prize

Following the success of last year’s competition, the UK Data Service launched the 2017 Dissertation Prize. The Prize provides a great opportunity to recognise and reward students who use our data.

Prizes of £500 (1st place), £250 (2nd place) and £150 (3rd place) will be awarded to undergraduates who use secondary quantitative and/or qualitative data available via the UK Data Service in their dissertations.

Abstracts of the winning dissertations will feature in our Newsletter and full copies will be published on the UK Data Service website (with permission of the students, supervisors and affiliated institutions).

Application and award process

Students entering the competition will submit an Executive Summary of their dissertation, outlining its research question(s), methodology and main results, by 15th May 2017. More information on how to enter the competition can be found here.

Our internal panel, consisting of Beate Lichtwardt, Celia Russell, Maureen Haaker and Laura Watt, is responsible for shortlisting the entries. Students who are shortlisted will then be asked to submit their full dissertation for judging by our external panel.

Meet the judges:

Dissertation Prize judging panel

Our external panel of judges consists of four esteemed academics from Universities across the UK. Pictured from left to right, they are: Professor John MacInnes from The University of Edinburgh, Professor Wendy Olsen from The University of Manchester, Professor Jane Gray from Maynooth University, and Dr Stephen Jivraj from University College London (UCL).

Professor MacInnes is Professor of Sociology and Associate Dean of Quantitative Methods. He is heavily involved in promoting the use of quantitative methods in social science and sits on the advisory board of ‘getstats’ – the RSS’s Statistical Literacy Campaign. His own research interests are in social demography, gender and national identity.

Professor Olsen is Professor of Social Statistics but teaches both statistics and qualitative data analysis. Her own research is focused on the sociology of economic life and has included case studies of Indian and UK labour markets.

Professor Gray is Professor of Sociology as well as program leader for the Irish Qualitative Data Archive. Her own research focuses on families, households and social change, currently using qualitative life history analysis to explain the adoption of innovative family life strategies in changing social and economic contexts.

Dr Jivraj is a lecturer in Population Health in the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health. He is a member of the UCL Q-Step Centre, designed to promote undergraduate quantitative social science training. His own research interests are in later life health and wellbeing, spatial and social inequalities and neighbourhood effects.

Between them the judges have a mix of qualitative and quantitative expertise and a vast array of research interests. They will award the prizes to those students who demonstrate the most interesting and high quality use of the data. The winners will be announced in early July.

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