Power, poverty and place: why the local matters

Join us for our monthly GM Policy Hub seminar series which focuses on a different regional policy agenda each month. In November we are focusing on poverty and why there is a need for our responses to it to be far more nuanced than the current social mobility agenda provides.

‘What we believe about low-income students - how we relate to them - in fact, it plays a considerable role in determining how we teach them’ (Robinson, 2007) 

Evidence shows that what we are doing to eradicate the disadvantage gap isn’t working. At the current rate of reduction, it will take over 500 years for ‘disadvantaged’ children to match the exam success of their ‘advantaged’ peers.

This seminar will set out the current levels of poverty, associated metrics and its impact on children, schooling and communities in Greater Manchester. Carl Emery and Louise Dawes, from the Manchester Institute of Education, will examine the dominant model of one-size-fits-all in regard to reducing the (disadvantage) attainment gap and explore alternative localised approaches, thereby connecting the narrow ‘what works’ policy agenda to ‘what matters’ to people and place.

Throughout this discussion, they will be drawing on knowledge developed by the Local Matters research network and a specific case study presented by Manchester Food Bank. 

Their approach recognises that poverty, and the responses to it, need to be far more nuanced than the current social mobility agenda offers.

When: 1:00-2:30pm, Thursday 1st December

Where: University of Manchester (room to be shared on registration)

Registration: Please email Sol Hallam (sol.hallam@manchester.ac.uk) being sure to include your name, job title, and organisation, alongside any dietary or access requirements.


  • Carl Emery, Lecturer in Education, University of Manchester
  • Louisa Dawes, Senior Lecturer in Education, University of Manchester
  • Patsy Davies, Campaign Coordinator, Manchester Central Foodbank

Chaired byCecilia Wong, Professor of Spatial Planning, University of Manchester


12:45-1:15pm | Networking and lunch

1:15:-1:45pm | Presentation from our speakers

1:45-2:15pm | Discussion and Q&A led by our chair

2:15-2:30pm | End

If you know of any colleagues in academia, policy, or the charity sector that may be interested in this event, then please feel free to share it with them. 


About the GM Policy Hub seminar series

Join us for our monthly GM Policy Hub seminar series. Each month, we will focus on a different regional policy agenda, with a University of Manchester academic presenting their research on the topic, followed by an audience Q&A. 

Come along to hear about research relating to your work. Following the presentation, take the opportunity to grab a sandwich and network. Meet the academic and the Policy@Manchester team or get to know others working in policy areas across GM.