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Dr Helen Williams


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Senior Lecturer in Criminology and Programme Leader on MSc Leadership in Criminal Justice and Policing

I started teaching at the University of Leeds in 2015 while completing my doctoral research in the School of Interdisciplinary Gender Studies. My PhD was principally concerned with sexualisation, sex education, and the ways in which young people acquire knowledge and cultures of sex and sexuality. This included contemporary constructions of classed masculinities and femininities, the use of internet pornography as a sex education tool, and young people as producers of sexually explicit content such as sexts.

I am currently interested in vulnerability in the Criminal Justice system, particularly in relation to sexual violence, and state and social regulation of sex and sexuality. I have completed research on diverse topics such as learning disabilities and sexual violence, sex work, widening participation in higher education, and social science pedagogies.

I am the Programme Leader for MSc Leadership in Criminal Justice and Policing.

My office hours are Wednesdays 9-11am via Teams – no appointment necessary.



Teaching and supervision

I teach on the following modules:

  • CRM303 Selling Sex: Theory, Policy and Practice
  • Social Science Dissertation (Undergraduate)
  • LCPM06 Negotiating Crime and Criminal Justice in Global Contexts
  • LCPM03 Leadership and Criminal Justice Dissertation
  • SSCM43 Identities, Inequalities and Exploitation in the Media: Exploring the Digital Divide
  • SSCM26 Inequality and Society Dissertation

Research interests for potential research students

  • Sexual violence
  • Disability and criminal justice
  • Sex work and sex worker activism
  • Mediated sexualities including pornography
  • Sex education
  • Identity, inequality, and vulnerability
  • Media representations of crime
  • Reality TV and popular culture

Research

I am a qualitative researcher and experienced in conducting research on sensitive topics and/or research with vulnerable groups. I am particularly interested in research that is participatory by design.

I have been engaged in projects examining access to justice for people with learning disabilities who have experienced sexual violence; the effects of Covid-19 on sex workers, widening participation in HE, and social science pedagogies.

Guest Blog – Criminal Justice responses to reports of sexual violence from women with learning disabilities and/or autism by Helen Williams (Sunderland University) and Alison Jobe (Durham University).

Publications

Number of items: 17.

Article

Williams, Helen and Karathanasopoulou, Evangelia (2023) Podcasting as a Feminist Space for the Disclosure of Trauma and Intimate Embodied Experience: The Heart as a case study of quiet activism. Radio Journal: International Studies in Broadcast & Audio Media. pp. 1-28. ISSN 2040-1388 (Submitted)

Williams, Helen and Roberts, Nicola (2022) ‘I just think it’s really awkward’: Transitioning to Higher Education and the implications for student retention. Higher Education: The International Journal of Higher Education Research. ISSN 0018-1560

Quaid, Sheila and Williams, Helen (2021) Troubling Knowledges and Difficult Pedagogical Moments for Students Learning. International Journal of Inclusive Education. ISSN 1464-5173

Williams, Helen (2021) 'You can spot them a mile off' - Young women's negotiations of class and the sexual culture of shame. Sexuality and Culture. ISSN 1095-5143

Conference or Workshop Item

Williams, Helen and Jobe, Alison (2023) Collecting data using drama: A participatory film project. In: Research and Knowledge Exchange Conference, 13th January 2023, University of Sunderland. (Unpublished)

Roberts, Nicola and Williams, Helen (2022) The Criminology Retention Project. University Keynote Speakers. In: The University of Sunderland Annual Learning and Teaching Conference, 7 December 2022, The Fire Station, Sunderland.

Williams, Helen and Jobe, Alison (2022) Criminal justice responses to people with learning disabilities and/ or autism reporting sexual violence. In: BSC Annual Conference, 29th June-1st July 2022, University of Surrey. (Unpublished)

Williams, Helen and Karathanasopoulou, Evi (2022) Podcasting to Smash the Patriarchy: The Heart as a case study of quiet activism. In: CASS Public Lecture, 23 Feb 2022, University of Sunderland.

Quaid, Sheila, Williams, Helen and Wilcock, Angela (2022) Do we need the HE classroom in Social Sciences to be a safe space or a discomforting space ? Research from the teacher perspective. In: CASS Public Seminar Series, 26 Jan 2022, University of Sunderland. (In Press)

Williams, Helen and Roberts, Nicola (2021) Apprehension, anxiety and awkwardness: transitioning to Higher Education and the implications for student retention. In: EuroCrim Conference, 8-10 September 2021, Online. (Unpublished)

Karathanasopoulou, Evangelia and Williams, Helen (2021) Disembodiment and The Heart: Podcasting as a Safe Space for the Discussion of Intimate Embodied Experience. In: Oral History and The Media, 9 July 2021, University of Bournemouth, USA. (Unpublished)

Williams, Helen and Jobe, Alison (2021) Incredible Witnesses: Exploring barriers to justice for people with learning disabilities who have experienced sexual violence. In: BSC Annual Conference, 7-9 July 2021, Online. (Unpublished)

Williams, Helen and Roberts, Nicola (2021) Apprehension, anxiety and awkwardness: transitioning to Higher Education and the implications for student retention. In: First International Practice Focused Research in Education Conference (IPFREC), 5-8 July 2021, University of Sunderland. (Unpublished)

Quaid, Sheila and Williams, Helen (2021) Troubling Knowledges and Difficult Pedagogical Moments for Students Learning. In: Knowledge Exchange for Learning and Teaching in HE |Three Rivers Conference, 25 June 2021, Online. (Unpublished)

Williams, Helen and Roberts, Nicola (2021) Apprehension, anxiety and awkwardness: transitioning to Higher Education and the implications for student retention. In: Third Annual FES Staff Research Conference: Professions-Facing, 14 June 2021, University of Sunderland. (Unpublished)

Williams, Helen (2021) Incredible Witnesses: Barriers to justice for people with learning disabilities. In: Centre for Applied Social Sciences Public Lecture Series, 24 Feb 2021, University of Sunderland. (Unpublished)

Other

Williams, Helen (2022) Evolve: Evaluation Report. UNSPECIFIED. (Unpublished)

This list was generated on Tue Mar 21 01:58:15 2023 GMT.

My areas of expertise include sexual violence, particularly among vulnerable groups, and police responses to complainants of sexual offences. I am interested in the influence of societal inequalities on vulnerability to crime or criminality and media representations of crime, criminals, and victims.

As an interdisciplinary scholar, I am experienced in research that spans criminology, sociology, health and social care, education, media studies, children and young people, cultural studies, and policy analysis.

Last updated 26 January 2023