Stellar Network and the University of Roehampton -
Drs Sue Reeves, Lewis Halsey and Joerg Huber (Department of Life Sciences - Centre for Research in Ecology). There is growing evidence that people who regularly eat breakfast tend to be slimmer, i.e. have a lower body mass index (BMI) than people who usually skip breakfast and, indeed, that breakfast skipping is a risk factor for weight gain and obesity. But as yet, nobody knows why.
Data collection has just started a new study at University of Roehampton, seeking to explain this paradox, by investigating physiological differences between breakfast eaters and breakfast skippers. The study is experimentally comparing the effects of eating or skipping breakfast on energy expenditure, activity levels, blood parameters and dietary habits through a randomised cross-over trial.
The team’s psychologist, Dr Joerg Huber, said: "This study will build on a large, national survey on 'morningness' and breakfasting we have just conducted. Preliminary results from that survey suggest strongly that 'morning people' are more likely to eat breakfast whereas 'night owls' tend to be those who can’t stomach food in the first few hours after getting up."
Dr Ceri Diss (Department of Life Sciences - Sport and Exercise Science Research Centre) has been working with Sweatshop, the UKs largest specialist running company with 35 shops and a further five opening this year, training staff for Biomechanical, Podiatry and Video Running Gait Analysis. The training courses run over two days and we are currently developing a refresher course.
Dr Tony Evans (Department of Psychology - Research Centre for Therapeutic Education) has been working with a number of fire services across the country providing both juvenile and adult fire setters’ advisers’ training courses. The courses are designed to assist volunteers from the fire service who want to help young fire-setters to change their behaviour at an early stage.
Professor Cecilia Essau (Department of Psychology - Centre for Applied Research and Assessment in Child and Adolescent Wellbeing) received a grant award to develop an early intervention for social anxiety in school children (Sub-contract with the Catholic Children Society Westminster Grant: The Education, Children’s and Cultural Services Directorate of the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames).
Dr Leigh Gibson (Department of Psychology - Clinical and Health Psychology Research Centre) is working with DSM, a global science-based company active in health, nutrition and materials for a study investigating how a protein drink may improve well-being and mental performance in tests of memory, attention, hand-eye coordination and sensitivity to emotional expressions. The protein drink acts by increasing brain synthesis of the naturally occurring chemical serotonin. Therefore, it could contribute to future treatments which might benefit from the use of a drug-free dietary intervention to raise serotonin levels in the brain.
Led by Dr Andrew Rogers (Department of Humanities - Digby Stuart Research Centre for Religion, Society and Human Flourishing), in partnership with Churches Together in south London, this two year project aims to investigate the demographics and ecclesiology of new black majority congregations in the Borough of Southwark.
Led by Professor Jenny Hartley and Sarah Turvey (Department of English and Creative Writing - Literature and Culture Research Centre) and funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, this Knowledge Transfer Fellowship partners the Prisoners' Education Trust in the setting up of reading groups in prisons around the country. To date, over 15 new groups in a range of prison settings including libraries, vulnerable prisoners’ units and health wings, have been set up. PRG also works with community organisations to set up reading groups in day centres and sheltered housing for ex-offenders and other at-risk groups.
Funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, Performance Matters sets out to explore the interface between performance theory and practice, as well as differing approaches to performance within higher education institutions and the public sector. The project is co-directed by Prof. Adrian Heathfield from the University of Roehampton, London, Dr Gavin Butt from Goldsmiths, University of London, and Lois Keidan of the Live Art Development Agency. Convened between departments of Drama, Theatre and Performance and Visual Culture, the research moves between different academic traditions, as well as crossing the educational and cultural sectors, with the active partnership of the Live Art Development Agency working as co-curators.
Dr. Sara Houston and Ashley McGill fromthe Department of Dance (Centre for Dance Research) have been engaged by English National Ballet to conduct research examining the outcomes of dancing for people with Parkinson's. From October 2010, Houston and McGill have been using a mixture of qualitative and quantitative research methods to look at well-being, quality of life, social inclusion, balance, stability, posture, physical and creative development. The pilot ended in February 2011 and following a successful bid to Paul Hamlyn Foundation, English National Ballet re-commissioned Houston and McGill to follow the classes over three years. The intention is to look at the long term effects of dancing for people with Parkinson's.