We are always keen to undertake research projects and we have a dedicated Armed Forces Military Research Lead within the university, Dr Gerri Matthews-Smith who is always happy to discuss research related projects.

Dr Gerri Matthews-Smith

An Associate Research Professor within the Business School with academic research and practice experience in three disciplines: human and organisational development, management, and wellbeing. Founder and Director of the Centre of Military Research, Education & Public Engagement.

  • You’re in Your Own Time Now
Forces in Mind Trust (FiMT) has awarded £300,000 to the University of Edinburgh, in partnership with Edinburgh Napier, to conduct new research into the experiences of ex-Service personnel living in Scotland.
The project will address the current lack of up-to-date and in-depth data on ex-Service personnel in Scotland.

Prof Thanos Karatzias

A Professor of Mental Health within the School Health & Social Care and a Clinical and Health Psychologist at the Rivers Centre for Traumatic Stress.
  • Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Complex Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (CPTSD) in Military Personnel
Forces in Mind Trust funding to work with Combat Stress on a project starting in early October 2018. This is an exploration of PTSD and Complex PTSD as per ICD-11 which was published in June 2018 and has included CPTSD as a new condition.

Christine Haddow

Lecturer in Criminology and programme Leader for the BA (Hons) Criminology degree. Within her disciplinary research role, she is passionate about understanding and giving a voice to the lived experiences of those with convictions. And competed two funded projects exploring the lived experience of veterans in custody in Scotland. This has lead to being made an academic link in the National Veterans in Custody Support Officer network.

  • Identity, Transitions and Support: Desistance Processes for Veterans in Custody in Scotland. 
Carnegie Early Research Incentives Grant (2018)

This qualitative project explored the process of desistance from crime for military veterans in the Scottish Prison Service (SPS), developing our earlier pilot study. It focused specifically on the role of military/veteran identity in shaping routes between civilian, military and criminal justice realms, as well as access and barriers to support across the life course of veterans. The study involved 15 biographical semi structured interviews and one focus group with veterans in custody in Scottish Prisons. The study piloted the use of a bespoke ‘longitudinal asset plotting’ tool to map the desistance experience for veterans. Findings were disseminated via a stakeholder event (attended by SPS, Scottish Government and third sector organisations) and papers at national and international conferences.

  • Exploring Opportunities for Desistance from Crime Among Ex-Military Personnel in Custody.
Edinburgh Napier Research Excellence Grant (2017)

This exploratory qualitative project aimed to examine the experiences of incarcerated veterans and their journeys to and from prison. 13 qualitative interviews were carried out with incarcerated veterans in Scotland, exploring their life histories and interaction with the criminal justice system. Findings were presented at the national Veterans in Custody Support Officers (VICSO) network meeting and academic conferences.

Dr Mandy Winterton

A sociologist within the School of Applied Sciences with established expertise both in educational inclusion and in wellbeing amongst military populations. Her work examines how factors such as gender, ethnicity, and social class influence experiences and patterns of social advantage and disadvantage. Mandy’s research on military populations includes large national studies of the daily lives and welfare needs amongst military families living on and off base; social inclusion in the military cadet organisation; and the influence of gender and ethnicity on serving personnel. Her work also examines the experiences of military veterans and the transition to civilian lives. A number of Mandy’s research projects are funded by the MoD. 
Mandy applied for and won Carnegie Foundation funding for two separate projects in the summer (2018): 

  • How can we direct military veteran's spouses to the most appropriate welfare organisations for their needs?

During the summer an Edinburgh Napier University student and military spouse (Kerry Watson) undertook a 3 month study looking at the support needs and support seeking behaviours amongst military spouses. Kerry conducted a survey and then individual interviews and was able to show the gaps in provision and, importantly, highlight how spouses themselves were so central to supporting one another. This is something that could do with infrastructure support. The study has already been disseminated within the Carnegie Foundation with a poster presentation at a press event. The poster and results will be disseminated more widely and the study has now established the protocols for a larger one that we can apply for further funding for. 

  • Identity, transition and support: processes of desistance among military personnel in custody

A group of social scientists within Edinburgh Napier University (Drs Christine Haddon, Katrina Morrison and Mandy Winterton) have also won Carnegie Foundation funding for a larger study that continues their established research on veterans in Scottish prisons. The previous study of Veterans in the Scottish Prisons was funded by the Scottish Prison Service (SPS) and Mandy along with their colleagues met with 13 Veterans currently serving a sentence. The findings have been presented to SPS in Scotland. This new project will start in January 2019, expanding our previous work, to look at a wider body of the veteran populations and particularly hard to reach populations. This includes women and young veterans who are a particular policy concern and who need the kinds of relationships we have established within the prison service, to find.