Director of the Durham Research Methods Centre,
Professor of Sociology in the Department of Sociology
Contact Professor Brian Castellani
In addition to being Director of the DRMC, I am Co-Director of the Wolfson Research Institute for Health and Wellbeing, Adjunct Professor of Psychiatry (Northeastern Ohio Medical University), Editor of the Routledge Complexity in Social Science series, CO-I for the Centre for the Evaluation of Complexity Across the Nexus, and a Fellow of the National Academy of Social Sciences. I am trained as a public health sociologist, clinical psychologist, and methodologist and take a transdisciplinary approach to my work. My methodological focus is primarily on computational modelling and mixed-methods. My colleagues and I have spent the past ten years developing a new case-based, data mining approach to modelling complex social systems and social complexity – case-based computational modelling – which we have used to help researchers, policy evaluators, and public sector organisations address a variety of complex public health issues, from depression and allostatic load to air pollution and brain health to the social determinants of health inequalities. We also developed COMPLEX-IT, designed to increase non-expert access to the tools of computational social science (i.e., cluster analysis, artificial intelligence, data visualization, data forecasting, and scenario simulation) to make better sense of the complex world(s) in which they live and work. As Director of the DRMC, my goal is to facilitate across the university a transdisciplinary and mixed-methods approach to social and health science, grounded in a complex systems perspective.
Dr Cristina Costa Ph.D
I am a researcher invested in exploring the intersection of society, digital practices and educational inequalities. I have a strong interest in the application of social theories to research methods. This approach is inspired by an eclectic academic background. Having graduated in Modern Languages, Literatures and Cultures - English and German (Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Portugal), I specialised in Translation Studies (Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg, Germany) before starting a career in Education in the Portuguese Navy where I taught English as a second language while holding the rank of Lieutenant. During this time, I focused my attention on the role of digital technologies in education, leading me to further my knowledge through a PGCert in e-learning at the University of Coimbra and an MPhil in Educational Technologies at the Institution of Education – University of Lisbon. I arrived in the UK to take on the post of Research Technologies Development Officer at the University of Salford, where I ended up doing a PhD part-time on the topic of digital scholarship practices. Along the way, I developed an interest in research methodologies, with an emphasis on participant voice (narrative), applied practice (ethnographic action research) and digital methods (and ethics). Parallel to this, I have nurtured a passion for theoretical ideas, something that has accompanied me since my graduate days. Alongside my colleague Dr Mark Murphy, from the University of Glasgow, we have edited several books and published numerous publications about the link between theory and method as two inseparable elements of critical research practice
As Co-Director of the DRMC (MA in Research Methods) I aim to collaborate with MARM Programme Directors and Doctoral Training Programme (DTP) Leads across the faculty, continuing to build on our excellent research methodology training provision. Working with MARM students and mentors will also be key to the aim of facilitating an inclusive student experience.
Professor Jochen Einbeck, PhD Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich
I have been one of the founding Co-Directors of the Durham Institute for Data Science (IDAS), and a Fellow of the DRMC since its inception. I am delighted to serve now as a Co-Director of the DRMC where I will be mainly responsible for implementing Health Data Science training and research programmes.
Dr Jeremy Kendal
Dr Jennifer Badham
My methodological research interests include survey measurement, causal inference, and minimum mixture models. My substantive research centers around elections, party politics, democratization and autocratization. I am a member of the Varieties of Democracy project, serving as Project Manager for Statistical Computing.
Dr Bilal Ashraf
Mrs Laura Masterman