Research News: March 2017

How football’s richest clubs fail to pay staff a real living wage

This article by Tony DobbinsBangor University Byusiness School and Peter ProwseSheffield Hallam University, was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article

English football’s top flight, the Premier League, dominates the sporting world’s league tables for revenue. Star players, managers and executives command lucrative wages. Thanks to the biggest TV deal in world football, the 20 Premier League clubs share £10.4 billion between them.

Publication date: 30 March 2017

Bangor Academic backs Young Parents.

From headlines on pre-teen fathers to pervasive beliefs about benefit and housing claims, young parenthood has come to be seen as a risk for society. A recent Bangor research study on the ‘Rhieni Ifanc Ni’ project run by GISDA across North West Wales, challenges those views.

The Rhieni Ifanc Ni project provided individual support to over 100 parents aged under 25, most of whom were mothers. Its primary aim was to build parents’ resilience. Aspects of this included promoting economic inclusion through supporting parents to gain relevant qualifications, supporting family and co-parent relationships and enabling parents to form networks with other parents.

Bangor University undertook a year-long study of parents’ experiences of ‘building resilience’.  The study was led by Dr. Myfanwy Davies and was undertaken by Karen Wyn Jones and Elin Williams in the School of Social Sciences.

Publication date: 29 March 2017

National Assembly for Wales pilots Academic Fellowships with Bangor University

Two Bangor University academics are to share their expertise to enable Assembly Members to develop policy and practice for the benefit of the people of Wales.

Dr Alexandra Plows of Bangor University’s School of Social Sciences and Dr Catrin Hedd Jones of the School of Healthcare Sciences will spend time working on specific projects alongside the Assembly’s Research Service under new Academic Fellowships being piloted by the National Assembly for Wales.

Publication date: 29 March 2017

Britons see volunteering as a hobby or a way to network rather than a chore

Despite the UK being named Europe’s most generous country last year, new data from the Office for National statistics has shown that volunteering for charities and other organisations in the country declined by 7% in the three years to 2015. Furthermore, over the past decade there has been a 15.4% fall in the total number of regular hours dedicated to volunteering, dropping from to 2.28 billion from 1.93 billion hours.

This, according to the Office for National Statistics, resulted in a loss of more than £1 billion between 2012 and 2015.

This downturn doesn’t show the whole picture, however: the ONS also found that more young people are getting involved with volunteering initiatives. And that though the amount of time spent volunteering has declined, more people are signing up to volunteer.

This article by Stephanie Jones, PhD student of sociology, studying civil society, volunteering and participation, at the School of Social Sciences Bangor University, was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article.

Publication date: 24 March 2017

Prof. Emily Cross at the European Research Council’s 10 Year Celebrations

Professor Emily Cross of Bangor University’s School of Psychology was invited to talk at the European Research Council’s 10 Year Celebrations Conference recently, where she shared the stage with some of Europe’s most eminent researchers.

Publication date: 24 March 2017

Sourcing sustainable Irish Sea mussels

When the UK’s largest exporting mussel fleet heads out to sea later this month, it will be in search of valuable seed mussels that they will then bring back to the Menai Strait to grow on before collection for export.

If a new Irish Sea research project is successful, this may be one of the last times the fleet need to set out from Bangor’s Port Penrhyn to search for seed mussels.

Publication date: 17 March 2017

Can ‘lay carers’ help more at the end of life?

Most people in the UK who are dying would prefer to be looked after at home.  Health care professionals try to enable this to happen.  A new research project led by Bangor University is investigating one way to make this a reality for more people.

Home care is usually provided by District Nurses, working with many other team members including general practitioners, hospice doctors and nurses, and Macmillan or Marie Curie services.  Family members are taught how to care for their loved one, and generally call a District Nurse if there are difficult symptoms.  As people get weaker in the last few weeks or days of life, they become unable to swallow.  At this point, a syringe driver is set up to give medicines under the skin over 24 hours.  While this often relieves most symptoms, some symptoms may break through and need extra doses of medication (called ‘breakthrough’ symptoms).   Then, the family usually call in the district nurse who can give extra doses of medicine as injections.  But, this can take a long time, often more than an hour.  The wait can be distressing for the patient and their carers, who then feel powerless to help.   Usually, family care would not include giving injections for these breakthrough symptoms, even though this is legal and practical.

Bangor University is working with partners in Cardiff University and Gloucester NHS Trust, to research whether lay carer role extension to give these ‘as needed’ injections should be more widely adopted or not in the UK. 

Publication date: 15 March 2017

Phosphorus is vital for life on Earth – and we're running low

Phosphorus is an essential element which is contained in many cellular compounds, such as DNA and the energy carrier ATP. All life needs phosphorus and agricultural yields are improved when phosphorus is added to growing plants and the diet of livestock. Consequently, it is used globally as a fertiliser – and plays an important role in meeting the world’s food requirements.

This article by Vera Thoss, Lecturer in Chemistry at the School of Chemsitry was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article.

Publication date: 15 March 2017

Does a new era of bleaching beckon for Indian Ocean coral reefs?

Despite extensive media coverage, campaigns and scientists’ warnings, still the world is not fully aware of what coral bleaching is and why it is happening. Mention bleaching and some think that it is the death of the Great Barrier Reef’s coral, but the problem is much more widespread. 

This article by Ronan Roche, Research Fellow, Bangor University and John Turner, Professor & Dean of Postgraduate Research, Bangor University was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article.

Publication date: 10 March 2017

Bangor University subjects join elite in world table

Newly published analysis of the latest influential QS World University Rankings, which saw Bangor University soar to 411th position worldwide, now provides further information on rankings for different subject areas among the world’s best universities.

Six subjects and one subject area taught at Bangor University feature among the world’s elite universities in this year’s release of the QS World University Rankings by Subject, with Agriculture and Forestry appearing in the top 100 institutions worldwide who teach the subject and rising from among last year’s 200 top Universities.

Publication date: 8 March 2017

Uganda fails to fill its honey-pot

Despite the large economic potential for honey production, many beekeepers in Uganda fail to produce and market enough honey to make a living from it.  

Researchers comparing the household economies of marginal farmers in Uganda, have found that honey adds to the household income of many beekeepers yet this impact is still limited. Beehives were donated to poor households in the communities for them to improve their livelihoods given the lack of alternative income generating activities and the adverse effects of climate change on their traditional agricultural production.

Publication date: 7 March 2017

From Geoffrey Chaucer to Jeff Sessions, misspeaking is when you lie about lying

When US attorney-general Jeff Sessions told his confirmation hearing he had not had any communication with any Russians during the presidential election campaign, only for it to turn out that he had twice met with the Russian ambassador to Washington, Sergey Kislyak, he was apparently “misspeaking”. So that’s ok then. 

But maybe not – while “misspeak” undoubtedly has the innocent connotation of “speaking incorrectly” or even “mispronouncing”, it is a sad reflection on contemporary life that whenever a politician uses a word, no matter how blameless the context might appear, people are less and less inclined to take the meaning of that word at face value.

This article by John Olsson, Lecturer in Law and Criminology, Bangor University was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article.

Publication date: 6 March 2017

New €7m EU investment in Wales and Ireland’s fisheries industry

Around €5.5m of EU funds will support the Bluefish marine science partnership, which will investigate the effects of climate change in the Irish Sea on the sustainability of fish and shellfish.

Led by Bangor University, in partnership with Irish and Welsh organisations, the project will assess how climate change is affecting the health of fish stocks, the migratory movement of commercial fish, and risks from new non-native species.

Publication date: 6 March 2017