The Centre for Narrative Research (CNR) is the leading international centre for narrative work in the social sciences. CNR aims to generate and develop innovative narrative research of all kinds, and to bring narrative researchers from all over the world into productive dialogue.
CNR draws on narrative research from across the social sciences and beyond. It is founded in interdisciplinarity; it includes researchers from psychological, sociological, anthropological, cultural and media studies, humanities, arts and performance research traditions. The Centre supports research on spoken, written and visual narratives. It fosters collaborations between its members, associates and advisors, and provides a forum for researchers in applied and policy settings, as well as academics and graduate students.
The Centre is open to all kinds of narrative researchers, whatever their theoretical and methodological backgrounds. At the same time, CNR's work is distinguished, first, by its commitment to narrative complexity - to studying the contradictions, incoherences and omissions in narratives, as well as narrative sensemaking - and second, by its explorations of relationships between personal narratives and the social world.
- To serve as an international focus for innovative narrative research in the social sciences
- To produce a distinctive strand of publications on narrative in the social sciences, in the form of books and journal articles
- To develop research collaborations, nationally and internationally
- To support and encourage the work of graduate students in associated with the Centre and in the narrative field
- To host conferences, symposia and seminars, both academic and applied
The Centre is located in the School of Social Sciences at UEL's Docklands campus, which allows close links with colleagues across programmes in Social Sciences and the School of Arts and Digital Industries. The Centre also collaborates with related University projects in the Schools of Psychology and Education, as well as with many colleagues in the Tavistock Centre.
Summary of existing research projects and future plans
The codirectors and other members of the Centre have collaborated to produce two edited books on narrative in the social sciences (Doing Narrative Research, eds M.Andrews, C.Squire and M.Tamboukou, Sage: 2008; Second Edition, Sage: 2013); Lines of Narrative, eds M. Andrews, S. Sclater, C. Squire and A. Treacher, Routledge, 2000; republished as Uses of Narrative, Transaction: 2004. Centre members are widely published nationally and internationally in the field of social science narratives. They are engaged in a large number of research projects relevant to the Centre, on for instance: narratives of gender and generation, and of forgiveness (M. Andrews); narratives of HIV and genre in psychology (C. Squire); life writing through art, autobiography diaries and letter-writing (M.Tamboukou); interconnections between micro and macro narratives and visual forms of life narratives (C. Esin).
The Centre runs a series of 'Narrative Methods' training days and symposia, and several Masters level modules in narrative research and analysis. It also organises a series of research seminars and, with the NOVELLA (Narratives of Varied Everyday Lives and Linked Approaches), a programme of graduate research seminars. Many research students are based in the Centre, as are a number of Visiting Fellows.
Collaborative Research Events
CNR is a partner in the ESRC funded NCRM research methods node, 'Narratives of varied everyday lives and linked approaches (NOVELLA) based at the Institute of Education.
Read more about our collaborative CNR events:
Publications and Resources
This area of the CNR website collects together some of the work done by CNR members and associates over the past 15 years. See CNR's publications and resources.