North West Social Science Doctoral Training Partnership

The benefits of working from home and the advantages of online conferences


Evanthia Koukouli, Social Statistics, Lancaster University, 2018 Cohort

Many things have changed due to the pandemic, one of which is our working life. Even though I used to think that working from home wouldn’t be a problem for me, it ended up being far more challenging. For a long time, I alternated between working for more than 10 hours per day and not working at all due to lack of motivation and tiredness. In particular, during the first weeks, the change to my working environment made me super productive.  After a while, though, things started to go in the opposite direction. My concentration became worse than ever and I felt that I was beginning to lose my motivation. Nevertheless, there were a lot of things that helped me stay calm, confident and positive.

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“Of the very most deprived neighbourhoods…the Anfield area of Liverpool is one of the most deprived areas in England”

Lee W

Lee Wainwright, Business & Management, University of Liverpool, 2019 Cohort

Growing up in Anfield within ‘the most deprived area’ in England, didn’t really mean anything as a young person.  I didn’t feel ‘poor’.  Only when I was old enough to think about university did I begin to notice a difference between what I saw on TV or heard on the radio regarding ‘UCAS points’ and ‘clearing’, and what me and my friends were doing – none of us were planning to apply to university, all were encouraged by parents to find a job as the next step, shrugging off poor A Level results (for some of us) as unnecessary formalities.  No one had older brothers or sisters who were students.

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Methods North West Methods Sessions 2020

Methods North West will be running a series of short, online Methods Sessions between July – December 2020. The sessions will be held over zoom and delivered by experts in their fields. 

Initial sessions include Doing Twitter Recruitment and Research, Open Access Resources, Learning for Wellbeing, Conceptual Analysis and Researching Film Online. A full list of sessions can be found hereNew sessions are still being added, so do keep checking back!

My PhD Life in Lockdown

Hannah Sawyer, Psychology, University of Liverpool, 2018 Cohort



Due to COVID-19, we have all been working from home since March. This unprecedented situation is something that I, like many others, was not expecting or prepared for when I started my PhD only five months ago. My PhD routine prior to lockdown consisted of coming to the office every day and having face-to-face meetings with supervisors, as well as including a social aspect of receiving peer support through regular coffee breaks and in-person chats. This came to a halt 11 weeks ago and since then I have been working, alone, in a make-shift “office” in my living room.

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