School of Sociology and Social Policy


The ENQUIRE journal ran from 2008 until 2016 when it was archived and replaced by the ENQUIRE blog. Here you can find all of the previous editions of the journal. 

Previous issues

Volume 1

Issue 1 - Methodologies and Methods: Variations on a Theme

Edited by Nicki Senior and Joe Greener

Research in social science sees the continuous redrawing and redesigning of methodological approaches. For its first issue, ENQUIRE has published papers which actively engage in current methodological debates and reflect on the use of particular research methods.

Issue 2 - Ways of Living: Inequalities, Risks and Choices

Edited by Nicki Senior and Joe Greener

Volume 1


Volume 2

Issue 1 - Narrating Women's Experiences

Editors: Erin Sanders and Kerry Allen

In this first issue of the second volume of ENQUIRE, authors have explored the various ways that women engage in a variety of narrative practices. Feminist discourse recognises the importance of narrative in the shaping of women’s lives- we use narrative to understand our life worlds and to make sense of the everyday. The way we talk about and recount our experiences impacts on how we see ourselves and how we negotiate our identities in society.

The authors in this issue have engaged with the concept of narrative and how this relates to women's experiences; they have reflected on the nature of the research process and worked to stimulate debate and discussion on how narrative practices can help to explore these understandings. The women writers here explore the bounded nature of the research process, and provide illuminations from their own experiences of using narrative research techniques and listening to research participants' narratives.

Issue 2 - A healthy research realm? Placing oneself in health and illness research

Editors: Melanie Birkhead, Susan Brown and James Roe

For this second issue of the second volume of ENQUIRE authors were invited to consider the place of the social science researcher within the practice of health and illness-orientated research and whether their own research experiences could be utilised to further develop understanding within their specific research realms. Consequently, authors have intentionally drawn upon, and engaged with, their personal research experiences. Such reflections can usefully inform and develop the practice (design, execution, analysis and dissemination) of health and illness-orientated social science research, as well as contribute to theoretical development within specific research fields. The authors address these broad topics in a variety of ways, often including open and frank discussions of the numerous challenges encountered and the resultant theoretical and/or practical insights (which seemingly locate the researcher as intrinsically embedded within the entire research process). Such personal accounts shed light on a range of interesting challenges (practical, ethical, moral, etc.) faced by social science researchers.

Volume 2


Volume 3

Issue 1 - Stories of Migration: Research, Theories and Everyday Lives

Editors: Samuel Okyere, Roda Madziva, Joe Greener and Sue Brown

In our third ENQUIRE volume we present five articles on stories of migration. Migration is a concept that continuously defines the lives of millions of people across the planet in diverse ways. To respond to the changing characteristic of the phenomenon, social scientific investigations into migration have turned from purely structural or individual accounts into more theoretically aware analyses that synthesise the full range of factors relating to individual, community, nation and world.  There is also a growing awareness that fruitful analysis of migration requires a range of research agendas and methodologies.

This issue follows our very successful conference last year on the same theme. It provides insights from a diverse range of migration studies and includes theoretical critiques, policy research, political thinking, empirical studies on the lived stories of emigration and immigration as well as the methodology and methods used to conduct migration studies. We are very grateful to the authors and our panel of peer reviewers and hope you will enjoy reading the articles in the fifth issue as much as we have enjoyed working on them.

Volume 3

Volume 4

Issue 1 - Research Stories: Opportunities and Obstacles for Social Scientists

Editors: Lenka Pelechova, Graeme Royall and Emily Wykes
Associate-Editors: Zalinah Ahmad, Simon Blake, Feng Gao and Stella Oluwaseun

This fourth volume of ENQUIRE presents three articles based on the theme of research stories, which was also the topic of the 2010 ENQUIRE Conference. As social scientists we are regularly engaged in the process of deciding upon and justifying our research methods. This is a process which includes devising theoretically well-informed research and being simultaneously responsive to the influences of the wider research environment. This issue aims for the authors to reflect on their own research stories by exploring the complex interplay between the influences of theories, epistemologies, methodologies and institutional processes on research design and practice.

Overall, we have received eight submissions for this journal issue, and following the thorough selection process, which included peer reviewing and editorial board meetings, during which all of the submitted articles were carefully assessed, we were delighted to accept three submissions. The three articles contained in this issue provide the authors' reflections and insights about their respective methodological approaches: the life history interview, team ethnography and ethnographic observation.

We would like to thank all of the authors and also our panel of peer reviewers for their helpful comments and insights. Thank you also to Sue Brown, Amal Treacher-Kabesh, Magali Peyrefitte and Erin Sanders for all their support and encouragement. We hope that you will enjoy reading this issue as much as we have taken pleasure in editing it.

Volume 4

Volume 5

Issue 1 - Research Stories: Opportunities and Obstacles for Social Scientists

Editors: Agnes Bezzina, Gregory Hollin, Ada Hui, Emma Katz, Stella Oluwaseun, Warren Pearce and Kezia Scales

Volume 5, Issue 1 was published in September 2012. It is a special issue based on the 2011 ENQUIRE Conference "Identity Research: Past, Present and Future".

Volume 5

Volume 6

Issue 1 - Interdisciplinarity: Grounding social research and practice in an age of complexity

The interconnectedness of our world has never been more apparent. In a challenge to sociology and the social sciences, contemporary researchers attempt to explain the complexity of social worlds by embracing methods and theoretical approaches that push beyond the traditional boundaries of academic disciplines.

Interdisciplinarity as a concept may serve a multiplicity of goals in research, policy and practice. It may include the need to answer complex questions and broad issues, beyond the scope of a single discipline, as well as the need to achieve unity of knowledge in a fragmented world. Arguments for interdisciplinarity appeal to notions of pulling together to solve common problems, which has resonance in the practice sphere with calls for multi-agency working and efficiency.

But is the call for interdisciplinarity a generalised plea for cooperation or is it something more? How are we to consider this challenge to established academic disciplines? How do we 'do' interdisciplinarity in our research? What does such research set out to achieve? Why do policy-makers look to multi-agency practices to solve complex issues? How should we reconcile the appeal of interdisciplinarity with warnings that it threatens distinctions between genres and leads to the loss of disciplinary identities?

Volume 6 of ENQUIRE sets a new precedent for the journal as it combines papers presented at the 2012 ENQUIRE Conference "Interdisciplinarity: Grounding social research and practice in an age of complexity" with high quality responses to an open call for papers on any theme from any social science discipline. In the special section on interdisciplinarity, Stephen Frosh's keynote addresses the destabilising effects of interdisciplinarity within the field of psychosocial studies, and Cassie Earl explores a multi- and transdisciplinary approach to studying the Occupy Movement from an educational perspective. In the open call section, Heather Watkins describes and evaluates the application of political ethnography to a study of the politics of community participation in areas of inner city and post-coalfield reconstruction in the East Midlands, UK.

The Editorial Team were very impressed with the quality of submissions received and would like to thank all of the authors that submitted a paper, including those we were unable to publish. Many thanks are also due to the peer reviewers who generously gave their time, and those that helped us find them. Finally, we are extremely grateful to Amal Treacher Kabesh, Kezia Scales, Agnes Bezzina, Warren Pearce, James Tangen, Greg Hollin, and Olumide Adisa for their availability and their indispensable support and guidance.

Volume 6

Volume 7

Issue 1 - Normality in an Uncertain World

Editors: Juan Anzola, Allan Booth, Elena Genova, Ulzhan Kazybekova, Ruoxi Wang

In a world of uncertainty, never has 'the normal' been so important. All societies operate normative patterns of behaviour that are enforced by sanctions. Such patterns are now interwoven at global, national, communal and personal levels so that 'the normal' has become a powerful entity. Ideas of biopower and self-governance are structured around the control of bodies and the creation of ‘normal’ ways of being. It can now be argued that tyrannies of perfection structure contemporary social life.

While social research has often focused on explaining deviance and the abnormal, such explanations are dependent upon a perception of 'the normal' for their existence. 'The normal', therefore, becomes important across disciplines, resonating with researchers as a central concept in addressing the pressing sociological issues of our time.

The idea of a 'normal' raises pertinent questions for future research. Who defines normality? What are the implications for deviance? Why do researchers construct and deconstruct the abnormal? Does normality serve as a mechanism of control? What function does normality play in different cultures/societies? Is normality inevitable?

Such questions underpinned the 6th ENQUIRE Conference, which was held at The University of Nottingham on 10 and 11 September 2013. The conference explored the following theme: Normality in an Uncertain World, featuring presentations from postgraduate students and early career researchers that explored the meaning of normality in five different parallel streams:

  1. Structural violence; sexual identities
  2. Health and the body; methods
  3. Asylum and transnational justice; healthcare practice
  4. Disability and identity; gender and sexual identity
  5. Personal and collective economy; institutions, individuals and cultural norms

The 25 presenters came from 14 different academic institutions across the UK and abroad, which gave the conference a very international, multi-disciplinary outlook, which immensely enriched the quality of the debate.

The editors are delighted to present some of the papers that emerged from conference, which reflect the breadth and depth of research carried out in the realm of 'normality'. We would like to thank the authors for their contribution and patience throughout the vigorous peer review process. The first article featured in this volume is by Frederick H. Pitts from the University of Bath who explores the normalisation of work and the possibilities of its denormalisation that political economy offers.

This issue would not have been possible without the continuous support and guidance, kindly provided to us by the School of Sociology and Social Policy. In particular, we would like to thank Associate Professor Amal Treacher Kabesh and Alison Haigh as well as the ENQUIRE Steering Group: Eleanor Hadley Kershaw, James Tangen, Anisa Mustafa and Steven Lucas. This would not have been possible without the time and effort all our peer reviewers invested in upholding the quality of this Journal - we appreciate your dedication and expertise.

Finally, we would like to recognise the effort of a number of people who were part of the Editorial team throughout the year. A very special thank you to Victoria Cluley, Feylyn Lewis and Assylkhan Nurgaliyev - we could not have done it without your passionate dedication to this project!

We sincerely hope that you will not only enjoy this edition of the ENQUIRE Journal but that it will inspire you to contribute to enriching its quality by submitting an article for consideration in the forthcoming ENQUIRE journal editions.

Volume 7

Volume 8

Issue 1 - Designing, Debating, Doing and Disseminating Social Research

Editors: Shuo Fei; Allan Booth; Ian Hamilton; Benjamin Mathers

The 7th ENQUIRE conference includes theoretical, empirical and methodological papers, exemplifying the diversity and quality of early career research in the social sciences. This issue focuses on a special section based on the 7th ENQUIRE conference theme on 4D Research: Early experiences of Designing, Debating, Doing and Disseminating Social Research. Whilst the PhD process is often referred to as a 'journey', this issue aims to hear about individuals' experiences throughout their PhD; from initial ideas at the masters level right through to the dissemination of published work. The aim is to facilitate mutual discussion and debate which enable people to learn from the experiences of others.

We have received eight submissions for this issue, and from screening process, which involved editorial board meetings and peer reviewing, during which all the submitted articles were rigorously assessed, we were pleased to accept one article. This article focuses on researchers' insights and reflections about the challenges, with respect to data collection, cultural obligation and peer pressure, ethical considerations and awareness, faced during conducting a cross-cultural research project in the UK and in India.

The Editorial Team would like to thank all the authors for their contributions and our peer reviewers for their invaluable comments and feedbacks. We hope you enjoy reading this issue and hope you consider ENQUIRE and contribute to the forthcoming ENQUIRE blog in the future!

Volume 8


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