Personal profile

Area of academic expertise - outline

My expertise has grown through engagement over my career with applied and 'blue skies' research in the fields of education, sociology and criminology. I have undertaken many funded and unfunded studies in those areas and published in many different international peer reviewed prestigious journals. In particular my use of qualitative and historical methodologies has the common thread of dealing with the social order, injustice, power, incarceration, street gangs and all representations of marginalisation. In terms of educational research I have undertaken collaborative studies of school leadership with Professor Ian Mentor of Oxford University, the training of school staff for leadership roles, the teaching in 'values education' in the pre-school period (funded by the Gordon Cook Foundation), and for the Scottish Office studies of school discipline and how teachers motivate classes to do well. 

Current research activities

I'm engaged with the University of Leeds in collaborative work about the nature and origins of the attainment gap in education, and a statistical analysis of the census data over a twenty year period to determine whether or not Scotland is a meritocratic society or if class mobility is static over the generations. In addition I'm using achival historical data to examine the moral formation of working-class incarcerated persons during the early part of the twentieth century in Scotland. An aspect of this work is a visual sociology of photographic data. In that context I'm completing a study of militant suffraggete women in Scotland prior to the First World War through a gender analysis.

Desired research direction

To pursue futher collaborative research partnerships within the UK and overseas. I'm currently investigating collaboration with the education department, Charles University, Prague and pursuing other funded opportunities for comparative educational and sociological studies. 

Target collaborative organisations

education department, Charles University, Prague

Fingerprint Fingerprint is based on mining the text of the person's scientific documents to create an index of weighted terms, which defines the key subjects of each individual researcher.

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teacher Social Sciences
education Social Sciences
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student Social Sciences
university Social Sciences
market Social Sciences
correctional institution Social Sciences
Values Social Sciences

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Research Output 1995 2018

Open Access
economic elite
freedom of information

Exploring a taboo of cultural reproduction

Holligan, C. 24 Aug 2017 In : British Journal of Sociology of Education.

Research output: Research - peer-reviewArticle

freedom of information
female student

Global Capitalism’s Trojan Horse Power and the National Student Survey in England

Holligan, C. & Shah, Q. 10 May 2017 In : Power and Education.

Research output: Research - peer-reviewArticle

Open Access
capitalist society

Activities 2016 2017

  • 2 Participation in conference

CiCe Association Conference

Holligan, C. (Speaker)
8 Jun 2017

Activity: Participation in conference

16th Annual Conference of the European Society of Criminology

Holligan, C. (Invited speaker)
21 Sep 201624 Sep 2016

Activity: Participation in conference

Press / Media

The hidden politics of the Curriculum for Excellence

Christopher Holligan


1 item of media coverage

Press / Media: Expert Comment

Jury Out on Restorative Justice

Christopher Holligan


1 item of media coverage

Press / Media: Expert Comment

Research issue is worrying

Christopher Holligan


1 item of media coverage

Press / Media: Expert Comment

Poor Outcomes are Not All Due to Bad Doormen

Christopher Holligan & Lisa McAuliffe


1 item of media coverage

Press / Media: Expert Comment

Blame children for own failure

Christopher Holligan


1 item of media coverage

Press / Media: Expert Comment


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