Category Archives: Uncategorised

The Academic Conference – and its Discontents

Every few months, my Twitter timeline fills with complaints about academic conferences from graduate students and early career scholars. Why, they ask, do I have to pay X hundred dollars/pounds/euros to attend the main annual meeting of my discipline’s learned society? Why is always in an expensive city? I end up giving a 15 minute… Read More »

Social Precognition and Sociology: The Case of Resistentialism and ANT

A small group of us have recently been working informally on a hypothesis that we have called ‘social precognition’. In summary, this proposes that the world of STEM cannot make any major advances that have not already been imagined by creative artists. Science fiction precedes science… However, my researches have raised the troubling thought that… Read More »

Why does the British Labour Party struggle with Antisemitism?

The relationship between the British Labour Party and sections of the UK Jewish community goes back a very long way. This is why Labour’s evolving policy on Israel has been so emotive for so many people… Within this context, some Labour Party members have clearly not thought carefully enough about the words they have used… Read More »

Reflections on the Death of Doris Day

The recent death of Doris Day severed one of the last links with a Golden Age of Hollywood. Many tributes have been paid to a woman whose talent was rarely fully used in her screen roles. In the course of these obituaries and memorials, it is interesting to note the songs that are picked out… Read More »

What counts as “Real Sociology”?

…if one looks around a typical campus, it is striking how much sociology has abandoned to other fields. The consequence is that those fields have invented their own social sciences to compensate. Engineering has human factors, computer science has user experience, transport planning looks almost exclusively to behavioural economics. Students have the message that sociology… Read More »

Whatever happened to Conservative Social Thought?

…This post focusses mainly on conservative thinking, partly because it is increasingly difficult to identify when and where many students would meet a respectful presentation of this stream of ideas. How many social science departments actually teach a core component on Conservative Social Thought? Conservative social and political thought rests on three quite distinct foundations… Read More »

CONSENSUS STATEMENT Adult Vaccination: A Critical Element to a Life Course Approach to Healthy Ageing for Adults with Diabetes

Diabetes is a significant global public health concern with wide ranging social and economic consequences. In the United Kingdom close to 4 million people live with diabetes, [1] with associated costs expected to reach £16.9 billion by 2035. [2] Older people with diabetes often deal with additional chronic conditions which together result in a weakened… Read More »

Robert Dingwall appointed to DHSC New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (NERVTAG)

Robert Dingwall has been appointed as a social science member of the DHSC New and Emerging Threats Advisory Group (NERVTAG) NERVTAG is an Advisory Group to provide the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) and, through the CMO, Ministers, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) and other Government departments, with scientific risk assessment and mitigation… Read More »

The State of Sociology

Sociology in the UK ought to be in a healthy state given the vast range of skills it promises to confer on its graduates. Ideally, sociology graduates are well equipped to handle all contemporary forms of information….However, it is difficult to see how these qualities are developed by some UK sociology courses. The discipline risks… Read More »

Why the Chinese Government should read Herbert Spencer

…Under the current president, China has been moving towards the militant pole of Spencer’s continuum. Large numbers of people are employed in monitoring social media and maintaining the ‘Great Firewall’ to exclude and suppress knowledge and opinions that do not fit into the national leadership’s vision of a good society. This workforce is a direct,… Read More »