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Dr Joan Chandler

Faculty of Social Science & Business


Joan Chandler is the Dean of the Faculty of Social Science and Business


Joan Chandler graduated from the University of Sheffield in 1968 with a BA (Hons) in Sociology. On completing an education training course at Brunel University she was appointed as a Lecturer in Sociology at what is now Kingston University. She joined the University of Plymouth in 1982, was closely involved in the development of Sociology, and its links with Health. She has been Head of Sociology, Head of the Graduate School and is now Dean of the Fculty of Social Science and Business.

She has been a co-editor of Sociology and closely involved in the work of British Sociological Association, which she has in the past chaired.

Professional membership

Member of the British Sociological Association

Teaching interests

The Sociology of Health and Illness, Gender, Sociology of Religion and Social Science Methodology

Staff serving as external examiners

Currently External Examiner for the MRes in Research Methods at the University of Bradford

Research interests

Joan’s research and teaching interests lie in the fields of health and illness, family studies and gender. Her early research in Plymouth examined the family life of naval personnel. She has also been engaged, with colleagues in the Faculty of Land, Food and Leisure, in research entitled Family Farming on the Edge? Adaptability and change in farm households, which is funded by the Countryside Agency. Her current research interests are focused on solo living. Recently 2 projects have been completed in this area. The first is an ESRC-funded study which used longitudinal Census data to examine solo-living and long-term illness. The second is a qualitative study of living alone in rural and urban settings and is in-part funded by the Seale Hayne Educational Trust.

With coleagues at Plymouth, she has just begun a second ESRC-funded project, 'Solo Living and Life Course changes 1991-2001'.

Grants & contracts

In the last 5 years I have been the holder of the following research grants:

The Plymouth Health Action Zone (2000-2003 Learning Communities Support and Evaluation . £145,000

Countryside Agency (2000-2001) Family Farming on the Edge ? Adapatability and Change in Farm Households (jointly with M Lobley, S Blackburn & M Winter) £31,502

TCS Programme Grant jointly funded by the ESRC & Plymouth Acute Trust (2002-2005) The Implications of the EU Working Time Directive for Junior Doctors and Clinical Training (with G Winch & B Badger) £62.173.

ESRC (2003-4) Baseline Study of Solo Living and Long-Term Illness (with M Williams and M Maconachie) £31, 630.

The Seale-Hayne Educational Trust (2004) Solo Living in Rural Devon (with Moira Maconnachie and Carole Sutton)£4,856

Since 1995 I have published the following :

CHANDLER, J, BRYANT, L and BUNYARD, T (1995) ‘Women in Military Occupations’ Work, Employment and Society 9(1): 123-135

CHANDLER, J (1996) ‘Support for community psychiatric nurses in multi-disciplinary teams’ in Collaborative Community Mental health Care ed’d by M Watkins, N Hervey, Jerome Carson & S Ritter. London: Arnold.

BRYANT, L, BUNYARD, T and CHANDLER, J (1997) The Integration of Sea Service: Continuation Study. Family Commitments. Report to the Ministry of Defence

CHANDLER, J (2001) ‘Benchmarks and Sociology’ in Assessing in Sociologists in Higher Education. ed’d by R Mears and Eric Harrison Aldershot: Ashgate

REED, M, LOBLEY, M, WINTER, CHANDLER, J (2002) Farmers on the Edge. Report to Countryside Agency.

CHANDLER, J, WILLIAMS,M, MACONACHIE, M, COLLETT, T, AND DODGEON, B (2004) 'Living Alone: Its Place in Household Formation and Change' in Sociological Research Online, Vol 9, No 3
COLLET, T, WILLIAMS, M, MACONACHIE, M, CHANDLER, J, DODGEON, B (2006) '"Long-termness" with regards to sickness and disability: an example of the value of longitudinal data for testing reliability' in the International Journal of Social Reserch Methodology and method Vol 9 No 3 229-243
EVANS, J and CHANDLER, J (2006) 'To buy or not to buy': family dynamics and children's consumption' in Sociological Research Online Vol 11 No 3
DERRICK, S BADGER, B, CHANDLER, JNOKE, T AND WINCH, G (2006) 'The training/serice continuum: exploring the training/service balance of senior house officer activities' in Medical Education Issue 40 355-362