People & Work team
Director: Dr Sarah Lloyd-Jones
Sarah has over twenty-five years experience in both qualitative and quantitative research methods and data analysis and has been the principal researcher and consultant on many of the Unit’s studies. In addition to its commissioned work, Sarah has responsibility for the People Work Unit’s action-research programmes including shaping its current work around family engagement with, and support for, learning as a tool for tackling child poverty. Sarah is a founding director of Lles Cymru – Wellbeing Wales and its Chair and chairs its research and evaluation group. She has recently published a chapter on children, young people and wellbeing in ‘From Public Health to Wellbeing’ commissioned by Palgrave Publishing (Macmillan 2011) and recently contributed a chapter on youthwork and locality in the book ‘Journeying Together’ (eds. A Rogers and M Smith 2010. Russell House).
Phone: 029 2048 8536
Head of Research: Dr Duncan Holtom
Duncan is a highly experienced social researcher, with post-graduate training in quantitative and qualitative research methods. Duncan has taught research methods at under-graduate and post-graduate levels at the University of Wales Swansea and draws upon fifteen years’ experience undertaking qualitative and quantitative research in Wales and also Australia, Tanzania, and Jordan.
Since joining People and Work in 2004, Duncan has specialised in research in the fields of education, youth transitions and community regeneration, and has led high profile research and evaluation studies for the Welsh Government, Local Authorities, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and Save the Children. This includes, for example:
- The evaluation of RAISE, a £45m+ programme to tackle the link between poverty and poor educational attainment ;
- The five year programme of action research to inform reform of statutory framework for special educational needs;
- The first national survey of bullying in schools in Wales;
- The Evaluation of the School Effectiveness Framework for Wales;
- Research into Poverty and Ethnicity in Wales, for the Joseph Rowntree Foundation; and
- The ten-year evaluation of Invest Local.
Before joining People and Work Duncan Worked as an Associate for the Centre for Development Studies at the University of Wales Swansea and the Community Service and Research Centre at the University of Queensland.
Phone: 029 2048 8536
Lead Researcher: Rhodri Bowen
Rhodri previously worked as a researcher at Cardiff University of Wales, where he gained experience in quantitative research techniques. His first language is Welsh, and he recently completed an advanced Welsh language course at Cardiff University. He completed his MSc in Marketing at University of Glamorgan. During his eight years at the Unit Rhodri has led many evaluations for example in school based interventions in areas such STEM, ESF projects which aim to improve employment and skills amongst disadvantaged young people, and community development projects. He has specialised skills in survey design and analysis, and analysing complex datasets. Rhodri believes in adopting simple and straightforward approaches in order to achieve effective monitoring and evaluation of projects. Rhodri also has experience in delivering training programmes in subject areas such as understanding how to use the Welsh Index of Multiple deprivation.
Phone: 029 2048 8536
Action Research Project Manager: James Hall
James joined People & Work in 2008 to lead the newly established place-based project in Glyncoch (a village near Pontypridd) – a whole village approach to education, employment and wellbeing in partnership with Glyncoch Community Regeneration and other agencies.
Following study in Oxford and Cardiff, James’ first job was as a Baptist Minister, working for various churches in city, rural and valley communities in Wales alongside visiting a variety of workplaces on behalf of the churches. He then worked as an Industrial Chaplain (on behalf of all the main churches), exploring the impact of changing economic and industrial trends upon local communities and individuals (and this formed the basis of his Masters research for Cardiff University).
James started freelance broadcasting for BBC Wales in 1993, becoming a full-time member of staff in TV Presentation in 1998. Whilst at BBC Wales, James became the deputy branch secretary of BECTU, the broadcast technicians’ union.
Since 2015, James has taken a lead in developing a third sector network alongside others in Rhondda (Stronger Rhondda Gryfach) and manages a variety of action research projects which focus on education, employment, training, health and wellbeing with young people (using an asset-based approach to community development). James has also led several training seminars for the third and public sectors (including work on the Welsh Index of Multiple Deprivation). He speaks Welsh (to an intermediate level) and is now a member of a multi-disciplinary evaluation team in People & Work exploring the impact of a 10-year community project in several locations in Wales.
James has recently received training in professional supervision and facilitating action learning sets. He has considerable experience of meeting facilitation, public speaking, working with the media and setting up IT.
Phone: 07800 957512
Play It Again Sport Project Worker: James Watts-Rees
James joined People & Work in September 2018 for a year’s placement as part of the Play It Again Sport team. His role has been made possible by the Rank Foundation’s RAP scheme (Rank Aspire Programme) which supports young leaders to develop their skills and career options whilst contributing to the work of a local community charity. James is a native of Ton Pentre, Rhondda and, after leaving Treorchy Comprehensive School, he gained a Level 3 WRU Apprenticeship in coaching. He has extensive experience in mentoring and coaching a wide range of people in rugby and life skills. His enthusiasm for and commitment to Rhondda is second to none!
Phone: 07392 072115