Innovation in the community

Our collaborations and research are fostering innovation, social entrepreneurship and economic development locally, regionally and internationally. We are supporting local services for children and refugees to help them reach their full potential and are helping to make sustainable development a reality.

Sussex academics doing a demonstration on Brighton beach

Soapbox Science Brighton aims to promote women scientists and the science they do and to transform public areas into arenas for public learning and scientific debate.


Supporting local services for children and their families

We are working with local councils and health organisations to help improve support and services to children and refugees.

The UK’s first clinic to prevent family transmission of anxiety, launched in 2018, was devised and led by clinical psychologists Professor Samantha Cartwright-Hatton and Dr Helen Startup from the Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust. Research has shown that mental health disorders run in families, and children of anxious parents are at high risk of anxiety disorders. The new Flourishing Families Clinic is delivering workshops aimed at ‘raising confident children’ for parents with anxiety.

Psychologists from Sussex are also working with East Sussex County Council to provide the latest research and training to parents with autistic children in the East Sussex area through a weekly advice line, coffee mornings and trainings.

Helping refugees reach their full potential to the wider benefit of society

Research by Sussex academics has underpinned Brighton and Hove Council’s advice on how it provides language and support to refugees. Dr Linda Morrice, Reader in Education and Migration, is carrying out inter-disciplinary research on the role language and education plays in refugee integration, in collaboration with Mike Collyer, Prof of Geography, who is on the steering committee of Sanctuary on Sea, an umbrella organisation for refugee and migrant community support groups in Brighton.

Dr Morrice has also recently advised the UK Government on aspects of its refugee integration policy, while Prof Collyer is an advisor for Department for International Development and the Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration. Their four-year study with 280 resettled refugees – the largest longitudinal research project conducted with resettled refugees in the UK – has influenced the Government’s resettlement programme and the Government’s Indicators of Integration – the official measure used to inform national policy.

Sharing our research with the public

Our researchers are involved in a number of public engagement and outreach events. The University of Sussex has organised Soapbox Science Brighton events to promote women scientists and the science they do for the past three years. Sussex researchers have also shared their research at the Brighton Summit and at the Brighton Digital Festival.

Making sustainable development a reality

In Europe, we are looking at what conditions bring about social innovation in the energy sector in urban areas. The project brings together 13 European partners, including six city regions and a business.

In Africa we are partners on a new project, which aims to understand how to promote science, technology and innovation in Kenya, Tanzania and Rwanda.

Our Sussex Sustainability Research Programme builds on Sussex’s reputation for engaging in real-world problems by delivering research for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals around the world.

You might also be interested in: