Reflecting on the Riots

In the first episode of the LSE British Politicast, we take a closer look at the Riots of 2011. This podcast looks back on the riots, presenting sociological and criminological perspectives on why they happened and what, if anything, can be learned from them. Tim Newburn, Professor of Criminology and Social Policy at the LSE, talks about his award winning research project Reading the Riots, which aimed to examine in detail at who was involved, the extent and nature of their participation, and their accounts of what prompted or motivated their actions. Les Back, Professor of Sociology at Goldsmith’s College walks us through Catford, London, which along with the surrounding area of Lewisham, caught the attention of the national media when its multiple shops were raided and destroyed in the riots. He notes how today’s disaffected youth experience an “intense sense of the present”.

You can listen to the podcast here.

The idea for this followed from the UK Riots project I’ve been working on here on Sociological Imagination for the last year or so.

Reading the Riots

In this podcast, recorded for the LSE Impact project, I spoke to Tim Newburn from LSE about the Reading the Riots project. This was a rather astonishing collaboration he undertook with the Guardian newspaper, carrying out a large scale research project into the UK riots of summer 2011. This project is a fascinating example of how methodologically rigorous research can be conducted at a pace which allows it to maximise its impact upon public debate.