Margaret Archer joint-recipient of the International Oreste Benzi Award 2020

Professor Margaret Archer has been jointly awarded the 2020 International Oreste Benzi Award for her work against human trafficking. Archer’s ‘Housing, Help and Hospitality’ charity for trafficked women and their children was particularly lauded in the award announcement. A detailed account of the work of this charity can be found here.

The Father Oreste Benzi Foundation “promotes research, studies and opportunities for analysis and discussion on the needs of suffering, marginalised and disadvantaged people,” inspired by the work of Father Oreste Benzi, priest of the Diocese of Rimini.

Leadership, Organizations and COVID-19 – Gazi Islam, NUI Galway

Professor Gazi Islam gave an invited presentation on “Leadership, Organizations and COVID-19” to the Whitaker Institute at NUI Galway, on the 12th of October, 2020. The below recording and summary of the event are taken from the event page.

On 12 October, the Whitaker Institute hosted a live webinar titled Leadership, Organizations and COVID-19. The webinar discussed the challenges of being a leader against a backdrop of radical uncertainty including the need to make rapid decisions. Available information changes fast, and is often based on contested evidence. Meanwhile anxious employees and stakeholders seek guidance and some sense of certainty amid the challenges.

These challenges have impacts on people’s lives. In politics, the ambiguity accompanying Covid-19 continues to be exploited by populist leaders worldwide. In business, the corporate social responsibility initiatives that many have celebrated over the past ten years, are now being tested to their limits. Demands of those with short-term, profit-driven interests are pitted against longer-term concerns including the health and well-being of employees, customers and other stakeholders. In the public sector including education, the implicit contract of public service is likewise being challenged, as traditional funding sources dry up.

In the event, established leadership theories were also questioned. For some, the pandemic marks the end of the traditional, masculine model of leadership in which power ought to be centralized, and decision-making unilateral. Instead, we see examples of strong feminine leaders coming to the fore, with collaborative and empathetic approaches winning out. For others, such claims of a paradigm shift are premature.

Image via Derek Bruff, CC BY 2.0

Place-Based Economic Recovery Network (PERN) Webinar Series and BEIS Submission

Professor Jamie Morgan, together with Dr. Thomas Haines-Doran, Professor Andrew Brown, and Professor Gary Dymski (all University of Leeds), and Dr. Richard Whittle (Manchester Metropolitan University), recently submitted an inquiry into post-pandemic economic growth to the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Select Committee. This submission is reproduced on the Yorkshire Universities Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEP) network site here.

These scholars offer expert guidance to local authorities as part of the West Yorkshire ‘Place-Based Economic Recovery Network’ (PERN), with the aim of shaping the economic recovery strategy for the region. Initial webinar discussions and presentations took place in July 2020. Details of these webinars can be found here.

Image via Frank Pickavant, CC BY 2.0


Common good in a world of social distancing – Gazi Islam, Research Group on Collaborative Spaces

Professor Gazi Islam gave an invited presentation on “Common good in a world of social distancing” to the Research Group on Collaborative Spaces (RGCS), on the 19th of May, 2020.

Here is the abstract taken from the event page:

What is the space enacted in the covid world? What are our new gestures? What does our workspace look like? What will it look like in the post-covid world? What in the spacing of our security we produce collectively?

In the context of this third RGCS Open Seminar coordinated by Albane Grandazzi (GEM & Ecole Polytechnique), a presentation about space and spacing of the covid and post-covid world will be offered.

Pandemic Aware Economies, Public Health Business Models and (Im)possible futures – Jamie Morgan

Professor Jamie Morgan has reproduced his Retail Review article ‘‘Pandemic Aware Economies, Public Health Business Models and (Im)possible futures: What happens to a Cortisol community?’ as a series of blog posts on the Real-World Economics Review Blog. This work is also summarized on the website of Leeds Beckett University. The full text of the article can be found on Professor Morgan’s ResearchGate profile here.