Thursday, 27 March 2014

Investigating corporate psychopaths using management research methods – main findings so far

Speaker: Clive Boddy, Middlesex University

Date and time: Thursday 3rd April, 4:00pm, room HG03

Title: “Investigating corporate psychopaths using management research methods – main findings so far"

Clive will speak about his research into corporate psychopaths in Australia and the UK. This will cover who they are, how they are identified and what effects they have in organisations. Clive will outline three research studies that have been undertaken so far including a 2008 quantitative study of 346 Australian senior white collar workers, a 2011 quantitative study of 304 British senior white collar workers and a 2013 qualitative study among 7 British managers.

Findings include that corporate psychopaths are important because they: Are more frequently at the top of western organisations than the bottom; Influence workplace behaviour such as conflict and bullying, unfair supervision, workload, job satisfaction, withdrawal, organisational constraints and corporate social responsibility; Are willing to engage in the illegal dumping of toxic waste materials; Influence customer service levels, managerial trust, credibility and ethical leadership; Engage in fraud and cause accounting scandals and are assumed to have had a major influence on the behaviour that caused the global financial crisis.

Clive has been a Professor at Middlesex University Business School since 2000 when he was made a Professor in Marketing as one of ten Professors in Management Practice that were appointed that year.  After that he was a Visiting Professor in Marketing for eight years until 2011 and was then appointed Professor in Leadership and Organisation Behaviour in 2012. He has been researching corporate psychopaths and their influence on organisational outcomes since 2005.  Prior to academia he worked in Taiwan, Hong Kong, South Korea and Australia where in his roles as Company President and Group Board Director he successfully led high growth market research companies at country manager level and at regional (Asia-Pacific) level. He successfully co-founded a multi-national market research company before moving into academia.

Monday, 24 March 2014

Annual Psychology Placement Conference

The annual Psychology Placement Conference will be held on Thursday, 10th April 2014, starting at 9.30am in HG09, HG01, and HG02. This is a wonderful opportunity for placement students to showcase the skills and knowledge they have acquired whilst on placement.

Dr Letitia Slabu and colleagues on the Work Placement Module very much look forward to welcoming you at the event. 

Friday, 21 March 2014

After the REF event

Dr Emma Ward reports on a half day workshop she attended at the University of London last week (arranged by Knowledge London).

"The focus was on impact, and discussion points surrounded the challenges that we are all facing, and how to maintain momentum now that the last REF round is out of the way. A dominant theme was the ambiguity around what counts as impact and how best to measure it. Impact does not mean the same thing for every researcher, but the key thing I took away from the meeting was a deeper understanding of what impact could translate as for me in my research. It was helpful to view impact more in terms of a metaphor of an ecosystem rather than some kind of explosion of worth.

We were given an impact toolkit to take away, which has been devised by Averil Horten of Brunel University. This is not available electronically at the moment, so anyone who wishes to have a look is welcome to borrow it. The toolkit was developed with the question of how we take knowledge and convert it into impact in mind. Averil suggested that thinking about impact is difficult for some researchers because it requires consideration of the big picture when they are used to thinking about their research in very specific terms. The toolkit aims to help people identify and describe different types of impact, and understand what evidence of impact might look like in their field."

Thursday, 13 March 2014

Brain scans are fascinating but behaviour tells us more about the mind

Cognitive profiling helps us to understand the nature of specific brain disorders, argues Catherine Loveday from the University of Westminster

Calling all social psychologists

The British Psychological Society’s Research Board, in conjunction with the Social Psychology Section, is evaluating social psychologists experiences of the REF 2014.

To this end, we would be extremely grateful if you could could complete the survey below. The responses will be used to inform the Research Board's post-REF responses to HEFCE etc. regarding the appropriateness of the sub-panel configuration and assessment of the discipline under the REF.

To access the survey, please visit:
The Research Board will also be carrying out similar surveys for other areas of the discipline in due course – ideally as one single survey.

If you have any queries in relation to this matter, please do not hesistate to contact Dr Lisa Morrison Coulthard

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

British Academy funding success

Professor Olga van den Akker and Dr Satvinder Purewal have been awarded a British Academy grant to carry out a systematic review and meta analysis of the psychosocial consequences of twins and multiple births following medically assisted reproduction.

Medically Assisted Reproduction (MAR) is used by 48,147 women annually, is increasing yearly and mothers of MAR twins/multiples report greater psychosocial problems compared to mothers with singletons. The psychosocial and medical risks associated with twins and multiple births are known in research, practice and policy as being the greatest risk of MAR to the health and wellbeing of the mother and infant. The aims of this project are to conduct an updated systematic review and carry out the first comprehensive meta analysis of the psychosocial consequences of MAR twins/multiple births and compare maternal psychological distress of MAR twins/multiples versus naturally conceived twins/multiples and MAR twins/multiples versus MAR singletons.

The team expect to start advertising for an RA in the next few months.

Friday, 7 March 2014

Hello Parents! Are you expecting your second child?

Would you like the opportunity to express your own views and experiences on becoming a parent for the second time?

Deborah Rodriguez is a PhD candidate at Middlesex University. Her research will follow couples on their journey to and through the transition to second-time parenthood, capturing the addition of your new family member.  This is an area of research that has hardly been explored, and will help to provide some insights into what parents’ experiences are of their relationships when they have a second child.

Deborah is interested in how parents experience this new period in their lives, and you can help by sharing your story with her.

She would like to meet with both partners of the same couple several times, from when the pregnancy of the second child is at around the 6 months stage through to the first year of the child’s life to catch the transition to second-time parenthood.

The research primarily involves interviews, where you can talk about whatever you like with regards to your relational and parenting experiences. The research process is very flexible, and will be arranged around times and locations that are convenient for you. Information provided will be completely confidential and anonymised.

If you are interested in participating, or would like to know more about the research, please feel free to contact Deborah. Please note that by contacting her, this does not commit you to taking part.

Or if you know any couples who are currently pregnant with their second child and think they may be interested in sharing their experiences, please pass their details onto Deborah.

Thank you for taking the time to read this, and please do get in touch with Deborah for further information

Speaker: Antonia Bifulco, Professor of Lifespan Psychology; Co-director of Centre for Abuse and Trauma Studies, Middlesex University

Date: Thursday, March 20, 12:00 PM

Location: Committee Room 1, Town Hall

Title: 'Attachment style, relationships and psychological disorder - implications for Knowledge Exchange'.

Investigating attachment in human relationships is a fertile area for research into clinical outcomes, family life, and problem development. Bowlby and Ainsworth’s original concept of Secure versus Insecure attachment styles, formed in childhood in response to experiences with caregivers and which persist into adult life through ‘internal working models’ is now largely substantiated. Thus insecure anxious attachment styles are shown to mediate experience of neglect or abuse in childhood and adult major depression/anxiety disorder in prospective investigation. Further specificity of childhood experience, attachment style and type of disorder has been successfully mapped in an intergenerational London sample of high risk mothers and adolescent offspring to be described. Such research is of critical value to services working with families and clinical populations with this a key remit of the CATS team who worked on the intergenerational project. Examples are given of knowledge exchange around aspects such as the exchange of adapted standardised assessment procedures, practitioner training, monitoring of service outcomes, aids for case analysis and research dissemination.

Bifulco, A., & Thomas, G. (2012). Understanding adult attachment in family relationships: Research, Assessment and Intervention. London: Routledge.

Professor Antonia Bifulco is a Lifespan psychologist, currently head of the department of psychology at Middlesex University and co-director of the Centre for Abuse and Trauma Studies. Over a period of 20 years she worked together with her team on MRC funded research programmes into the lifespan psycho-social causes of mental health difficulties in women and inter-generationally. She has published extensively on the role of childhood neglect and abuse and adult adversity in longer term emotional disorder. Prof Bifulco is particularly concerned with propagating high quality research methods which include intensive, narrative style interviews to explore the context of experience of adversity, trauma and attachment in depth. She and her team are currently working closely with health and social care services to improve assessment procedures and practitioner understanding of attachment-based research in Child and Family services.

Opportunities for Masters students to do dissertation research with major retailers

The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) is bringing research into the retail sector by offering opportunities for academics and students to partner with major companies.

These companies such as Boots, British Gas, Camelot Co-operative, E.ON Energy Solutions, and Experian will work with research projects that are important to the retail industry.

The Retail Research Masters scheme is now in its third year, and has proved to be a great way for both students and their supervisors to build links with major retail companies. The scheme provides the opportunity to work directly with an industrial partner and to link your research to important retail and 'open data' sources.

The scheme is designed for students in a wide range of disciplines and projects will take place over spring/summer 2014. In addition, students will be eligible to enter a prize competition for the best dissertations submitted.

Taking part in this scheme offers Masters students:

·         a stimulating project to work on over the coming months
·         advice and support from the retail industry Demographics User Group - which represents 16 of the UK's top retailers and works closely with universities and government
·         industry advice on how data are used in real-world problem solving, and experience of addressing problems that matter
·         a chance of winning one of three prizes (£500, £250 and £250), awarded to the best three dissertations
·         an expenses-paid opportunity to showcase your research findings to an audience of leading retailers, at a conference to be held at the Royal Society on 8 October 2014
·         the possibility of additional sponsorship or research expenses from the retail partner to the project

There are currently 14 project proposals for students to consider. Retailers will be proposing additional projects, and students' applications will be welcomed, through March 2014.

See the links below for further information about the scheme, a list of available projects, and guidance on how to apply.

See below for further information about the scheme