School of English
Funded research projects

Funded research projects

We have a strong track record of securing external research funding from major research councils and established awarding bodies. This funding supports the development of collaborative projects that address both local and global research challenges. We also collaborate on interdisciplinary projects funded externally and by the University.


Current projects

A person performing.

Live Experiential And Digital Diversification: Nottingham

EU Regional Development Funding

Project Duration: 01/01/2021 - 30/06/2023

Principal investigator: Professor Helen Kennedy (School of Cultures, Languages and Area Studies)

In the School of English: Professor James Moran & Dr Spencer Jordan (Centre for Regional Literature and Culture)

This project will work with local businesses to use immersive technologies and techniques to deliver exciting new experiences for customers, visitors and audiences. The University of Nottingham and Nottingham Trent University are combining their expertise in these areas and working with local businesses to:

  • introduce them to the technologies
  • help develop viable products

This will help businesses maximise potential and profit in a post-pandemic economy. At the University of Nottingham this project is an interdisciplinary research project between the Faculty of Arts and the Faculty of Science that will be drawing on the sector-leading expertise of our academics from across the University. 

You can find out more here.

A series of cartoon speech bubbles.

Coronavirus Discourses: linguistic evidence for effective public health messaging

Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC/UKRI)

Project duration: 01/01/21 - 31/07/22

Principal investigator: Professor Svenja Adolphs (Centre for Research in Applied Linguistics)

Understanding the reception of public health messages is of key importance to the UK’s ability to manage the next phase of the coronavirus pandemic. Human behaviour is shaped by the reception and production of discourse and by the reasoning about difference sources of information. This project addresses key challenges that the coronavirus pandemic presents in relation to understanding the flow and impact of public health messages in public and private communications. This project is led by the University of Nottingham in collaboration with Cardiff University, and working in partnership with Public Health England, Public Health Wales and NHS Education for Scotland.

A selection of images of research documents and proteins under a microscope.

Medieval Proteins from a Priory

Wellcome Prime

Project duration: 01/06/20 - 28/02/22
Award amount: £6,148

Principal investigator: Dr Christina Lee (Centre for the Study of the Viking Age)

"Our project compares evidence from dental calculus on skeletal remains (proteomics) with evidence from mediecal remedies. It will fill the gap between text and osteological/aDNA data by applying a new method which uses protein residues from tooth calculus. The outcomes may provide new insights into the diet and care of people who suffered from illness. The technique has never been applied to search for specific medical plants. For this pilot study we will use dental remains from the medieval cemetery at Norton Priory and compare it to medical texts and dietary advice.

Our project will examine if we can see a correlation between medical advice and practical application. It potentially can answer questions, such as: did the sick have a special diet? Do we see evidence for treatment? Cultures express attitudes towards sickness differently, but illness is a universal experience. This project can go some way to answer how a society so different from our own managed disease."


Marginalised Families Online: Exploring the role of digital media for parents in diverse family groups

The British Academy

Project duration: 03/03/2018 - 02/03/2022
Award amount: £240,232.33

Principal investigator: Dr Jai MacKenzie (Centre for Research in Applied Linguistics)

The Marginalised Families Online project will explore the role that digital (online and mobile) media such as messaging apps, discussion forums, social networks and blogs, play in the lives of marginalised family groups in the UK. It focuses on parents who are LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and/or transgender), adoptive, and/or solo (raising children on their own).

The project aims to give a voice to families who tend to be under-represented in both an academic and broader social context, and to highlight some of the challenges they face. It uses innovative methods (drawing on sociological, linguistic and digital approaches and tools) to forge new understanding of the way parents navigate their roles, relationships and experiences in relation to social norms around gender, sexuality and the family. By focusing on the intersections between the experiences of LGBT, solo and adoptive parents, the project seeks to understand and address issues that relate to a range of diverse families.

Two shelves of books.

The Survey of English Place-Names

British Academy - An Academy Research Project

Project duration: Ongoing

Principal investigator: Dr Jayne Carroll (Institute for Name Studies)

The Survey of English Place-Names was established in the 1920s and has enjoyed the British Academy's support since then. Its aims are to publish volumes on place-names across England, on a county-by-county basis. To date 95 volumes have ben published, covering most or all of 32 counties. Work is ongoing for Hampshire, Herefordshire, Kent, Lancashire, Lincolnshire, Shropshire, Somerset and Staffordshire.
Cover of the journal Shakespeare Bulletin.

Shakespeare Bulletin

Project Duration: Ongoing

Principal investigator: Dr Peter Kirwan (Centre for Regional Literature and Culture)

Dr Peter Kirwan has been appointed the general editor of the leading journal in early modern performance studies, Shakespeare Bulletin. Published by Johns Hopkins University Press, this quarterly journal publishes articles, performance reviews and book reviews covering the wide range of early modern drama in performance. The journal and its editorial assistants will be hosted by the School of English.
Lucy Jones

Language and LGBT identity: Exploring the marginalisation of young people

British Academy/Leverhulme Small Research Grant

Project duration: 01/10/2018 - 31/01/2022
Award amount: £7,173

Principal investigator: Dr Lucy Jones (Centre for Research in Applied Linguistics)

This project involves sociolinguistic fieldwork with LGBT young people in three socioeconomically and culturally variable locations in the UK over the next two years. The project is focused on intersectionality, considering how factors such as the young people’s socioeconomic class, ethnicity, location, and support networks impact on their experiences as LGBT people and their subsequent identity constructions.

Past projects

Visit our past projects page to find out more.


Related research body links

Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) Leverhulme Trust British Academy Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)

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