Department of Sociology

The blog of the Department of Sociology at the University of Surrey

Shared parental leave – can it be made normal?

By Paul Hodkinson A year ago, I was beginning four months of what, at the time, was called ‘additional paternity leave’. I am hard pressed to remember a more distinctive, enjoyable or fulfilling period in my recent daily life and, as the spring weather has set in this year, have found myself wishing I could […]


The social nature of online interactions

By Jo Hope (née Belcher) Although use of the Internet in the UK has become widespread (Dutton and Blank, 2013), our attitude toward online interactions and information seeking remains complex. There are utopian and dystopian approaches towards our use of ‘new’ media that have remained remarkably resistant to criticisms. These themes run through research and wider, […]


As Cuts Bite Police Forces Shore Up the Front Line with a ‘Dad’s Army’ of Police Support Volunteers

By Karen Bullock For the police service, as for other public sector organisations, a primary question since 2010 has been how to maintain levels of service as deep funding cuts start to bite. The public sector union Unison has recently drawn attention to how police services across England and Wales are quietly retaining volunteers to […]


Invisible Internet work

By Christine Hine An important strand of sociological work in the 1990s focused on “invisible work”: the labour that was needed, in the background, to make things run smoothly. Susan Leigh Star (1999) was particularly influential in showing us that everywhere there was an infrastructure apparently standardizing, facilitating and automating, there would be people working […]


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