ESRC Postdoctoral Fellow
Dr Kirsty Deacon
University of Strathclyde
My PhD looked at young people’s experiences of having a family member in prison. The research work carried out during my Fellowship expanded this work by exploring the understanding of ‘family’ and the operationalisation of the Scottish Prison Service Family Strategy by prison officers. The Fellowship provided me with the time and mentoring support to disseminate the findings from my PhD and this further research through the publication of three journal articles – on sibling imprisonment, simultaneous imprisonment, and young people’s unique experiences of a family member’s imprisonment.
Fellowship accomplishments / highlights:
Completing research into prison officers’ understandings of family and the operationalisation of the Scottish Prison Service Family Strategy. Although I didn’t publish any journal articles during my Fellowship, the writing work that I was able to do, and the support I received from my mentors around this, meant that I have been able to publish three journal articles since, based on my PhD and Fellowship research.
Advice for future fellows:
Our cohort’s experience was very different as it took place during Covid-19 so there were limited opportunities to meet in-person or visit other universities or academics. My advice would be to take advantage of these opportunities where they exist, to build up networks and establish connections where you can. The Fellowship is also a unique opportunity to have the time and space to focus on your writing and to publish from your research, just enjoy this opportunity!