Research within the School of Applied Social and Policy Sciences

We are a world leader in research and research impact, with a vibrant PhD programme.

The School of Applied Social and Policy Sciences aims to contribute towards peaceful, sustainable and just societies through pioneering, original and transformative research, complimented by innovative communication strategies that increase public awareness and understanding.

Our research focuses on regions and professional areas, looking at the challenges associated with heightened forms of contention, the complex legacies of political violence, different forms of deprivation, marginalisation and persecution, achieving inclusive social and public policy, and innovations in professional practice that advance security, justice, social resilience, and the public good.

At the heart of our research strategy is the School’s applied approach to research. The questions asked, the methods used, and the outputs generated are frequently coproduced with stakeholders and practitioners, with a special emphasis on marginalised communities adversely impacted by different forms of exclusion and violence.

Our School aims to open up the development of academic knowledge to innovations in theory, knowledge and practice pioneered within community and professional settings – captured through co-designed research projects – introducing these social assets into academic fora in ways that help the social sciences make theoretical and analytical breakthroughs.

This is also critical to the University’s wider aspiration to be Northern Ireland’s civic university and its mission to widen participation.

In this section


International Conflict Research Institute, INCORE, drives forward research and teaching uncovering and explaining the causes and consequence of conflict.


ARK is Northern Ireland's social policy information hub shared jointly by Ulster University and Queen's University Belfast.

International State Crime Initiative

We aim to introduce new perspectives to the field of human rights research.


YouthPact is the Quality and Impact body for the EU Peace IV Children & Young People’s Programme.

Centre for Public Administration

The Centre for Public Administration is an international leader in research that seeks to enhance policy and public administration.

Applied Social and Policy Sciences Ethics Filter Committee

Our UoA 20 filter committee is in place to ensure that where fieldwork research takes place, it is done so ethically.