In response to a number of articles in the Times Higher Education Supplement earlier this year and reports coming from the Governement and other institutions querying the contribution that publically funded research makes to public knowledge and debates, the School of Sociology and Social Policy at Leeds University decided to go ahead with an intiative that has been discussed over a period of several months already, to start a public sociology blog. The general idea is to engage more with the general public and bring our various expertises and research to bear on issues and events of the day. The blog will have a variety of posts made by a group of authors with different research areas and expertises. Some posts will be reports of research being undertaken and research findings. Others will be commentary on issues and topics of public interest, perhaps in response to media reports or government announcements. Yet others will be opinion pieces on some subject of particular interest to the writer. All posts will be open to public comment so there will be opportunities to ask questions and discuss the issues with the authors and others.
The blog will be an opportunity for staff and, particularly, early career researchers and postgraduates to begin to develop and on-line presence and reputation and to build networks of contacts across the global sociological community. It will also be an opportunity to develop a style of writing and discussion that is sueful and accessible to a wider non-technical audience. The blog can be viewed at http://www.sociology.leeds.ac.uk/public/. If you see any posts there that interest you it would be great if you could comment on them.