School of Education and Social Work

Centre for Innovation and Research in Childhood and Youth (CIRCY)

Welcome to the Centre for Innovation and Research in Childhood and Youth

CIRCY was launched at the University of Sussex in 2012, bringing together research, scholarship and expertise on childhood and youth. It is an interdisciplinary and cross-university centre, with a membership that includes researchers from the social and life sciences, arts, humanities and professional fields including social work, law, education and health.

Our aim is to create a space for dialogue, collaboration, creativity and capacity-building - supporting new research and knowledge exchange. CIRCY provides a stimulating environment for doctoral students working in the area of childhood, youth and family studies and a destination for visiting academics and opinion formers.

We aim to become an internationally recognised centre of excellence in the field of researching children, young people and families. We are outward-looking, committed to working with policy-makers, professional colleagues, young people and their carers in order to share expertise, promote good practice and to exchange knowledge.

CIRCY nurtures synergies between research activity and the teaching curriculum through an undergraduate course - the BA in Childhood and Youth: Theory and Practice - and the Masters course - the MA in Childhood and Youth Studies. We also provide training in research methods with children and young people.

CIRCY is directed by Professor Rachel Thomson and Professor Janet Boddy, and supported by a steering group that includes  Professor Robin Banerjee, Dr Sevasti-Melissa Nolas, Professor Jo Moran-Ellis and Dr Hester Barron.

Don't miss ...

- Submit your abstract and CV by the 19th February to be part of the Connectors workshop 'Activism on the edge of age' in June 2016.
See details on our Events page.

- See recordings of past CIRCY seminars on our Events page.


The Centre for Innovation and Research in Childhood and Youth is a new inter-disciplinary research centre at the University of Sussex.

RT @BrookCharity: It's Sexual Abuse and Sexual Violence Awareness Week: tweet your support and tell everyone #itsnotok.

Fabulous news!! @JanetBoddy @jacshepautism @SussexCTLR

RT @JanetBoddy: Congratulations Dr Shepherd! @jacshepautism @SussexCIRCY @SussexCTLR…

RT @actnforchildren: It's Young Carers Awareness Day - A day to identify & support young carers #YCAD #MissingOut

RT @smnolas: Open letter to #uncrc : a better approach to child work | openDemocracy @SussexCIRCY…

Visit SussexCIRCY on Twitter


CIRCY Director:
Professor Rachel Thomson
T +44 (0)1273 876689

CIRCY Co-Director:

Professor Janet Boddy
T +44 (0)1273 872768

CIRCY Graduate Teaching/Research Assistant:

Elsie Whittington

Centre for Innovation and Research in Childhood and Youth (CIRCY)
School of Education and Social Work
Essex House
University of Sussex
Falmer, Brighton