Dissemination with The Right Honourable Andrew Mitchell

Pauline and Steve met with The Right Honourable Andrew Mitchell, Minister of State for Development and Africa at the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) in London, July 10th 2023. Discussions were held around the Rising Tide project and the uniqueness of looking at different settlement types. Andrew was interested in the BMJ article and looked forward to hearing more at future meetings.

The Education Awards 2023

Research Supervisor of the Year

Professor Pauline Dixon was awarded at Newcastle University TEAs 2023 “Research Supervisor of the Year”. Professor Jane Robinson said “I can say a few words to give you a flavour of the incredible difference this individual has made to the students they have worked with – They are one of kind and a strong role model. The passion, emotion, and dedication they exude for their research is infectious. They are committed to helping others. They always ensure that the little victories are valued and celebrated.”

Professor Karen Ross’s visit to India

Professor Karen Ross visited three of our project’s sites in April 2023 alongside Priyanshi Sharma working in conjunction with the Janya Collective. Karen has made a youtube video of her thoughts as well as interviews with women entrepreneurs, women commuters, and those providing bottom up solutions to safety issues, including SafetyPin.

BMJ Open Publication

Our Rising Tide project goes from strength to strength. Working with communities, partners and our research team our data collection phase has been very successful. Our project themes “Women’s Empowerment” “Entrepreneurial Freedom” “Health and Well-Being” and “Water, Sanitation and Hygiene” have all been informed by our empirical data gathering. Entering into our third year, we are focusing on producing peer reviewed journal articles, podcasts, radio programmes, films, animations, policy papers, and education content. Our first paper published in the BMJ Open sets out findings from our household survey. In neighbourhoods where there is a sense of belonging, satisfaction with life and freedom of choice a communities subjective well-being is significantly enhanced. Do download the paper by clicking on the image above.

ESRC Festival of Social Science

Professor Pauline Dixon was one of a distinguished panel at Durham University on the event “Improving Schools for Disadvantaged Children“. Along side Pauline was Ziauddin Yousafzai, who is well known for being Malala’s father. The event was Chaired by Professor Stephen Gorard with Professor Nadia Siddiqui also being one of the expert panelists. The event commenced with a summary of the key findings and implications from the British Academy study of early child education in India and Pakistan, on which Pauline was one of the Co-Investigators. Ziauddin Yousafzai provided the Keynote address and stayed at the event for the panel discussions.

Dr Kathleen Fincham India visit

Dr Fincham recently visited our three project areas in order to meet with women entrepreneurs. Her focus was to look at the association between empowerment and resilience and what it means to be a women entrepreneur in such circumstances. Being an entrepreneur provides women agency and dignity. Kathleen was interested in exploring how entrepreneurial spirit and dynamism is affected by the governance structures and institutions that are in place in the three different contrasting informal settlements.

Professor Pauline Dixon made a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences

Professor Pauline Dixon has received the coveted accolade for excellence in her field. Pauline, Professor of International Development and Education in Newcastle University’s School of Education, Communication and Language Sciences, is one of 47 Spring Fellows announced by the Academy of Social Sciences today (Tuesday 1 March 2022). Newly elected Fellows are selected through an independent peer review which recognises their excellence and impact, including their wider contributions to social sciences for public benefit.

“I am very honoured to have been recognised to become a Fellow of the AcSS for my research over the last 22 years with marginalised communities in the Global South. I’m passionate about the research that I have been able to carry out with in-country partners, colleagues and the communities themselves to highlight the enablers to empowerment.”.

The Academy’s Fellowship comprises distinguished social scientists from academia and the public, private and third sectors. They are drawn from across the full spectrum of the social sciences. Through leadership, scholarship, applied research, policymaking, and practice, they have helped to deepen understanding of and address some of the toughest challenges facing our society and the world. Fellows are highly accomplished social scientists. Many are making exceptional contributions to tackling current and critical issues facing the UK economy, local communities and places, and beyond. They are drawn from varied backgrounds, disciplines and institutions from across the UK and internationally.

Will Hutton FAcSS, President of the Academy of Social Sciences, said: “The Academy of Social Sciences is delighted to welcome the Spring 2022 group of new Fellows to join our ranks – representing an excellent range of highly distinguished social scientists. We look forward to engaging with them in our work.”

Empower Project YouTube Channel

We would like to introduce you to the Empower Project YouTube Channel, just click here to visit and please remember to subscribe. So far we have a playlist around Women’s Empowerment, which includes short videos and the full seminar: The entrepreneurial woman in an uncertain world. This seminar was held today and includes real-world experience of three creative women who, in different ways and in different sectors, are walking an entrepreneurial road from whose footsteps other women can learn to develop and grow. The seminar was co-hosted by Professor Karen Ross, Co-PI for our Empowerment Project; the Women in Development Network (WiDeN), an initiative from Newcastle University (UK) Global Challenges Academy; and the Indian Institute of Mass Communication. Its content fits nicely with the objectives of the Empower Project.


Welcome to our project’s web platform. Here we will post information about the Identifying Best Practice for Empowerment through Entrepreneurial Freedom: A Project for the Marginalized in Informal Settlements in Delhi (Empower). Please explore the various pages to learn about the project, its funders, the research team, and the settlements we will work with to gather best practices around community solutions to overcome the absence of basic quality service (education and health) and infrastructure (sanitation, transportation, wastewater, and water) provisions.

Find out more about the Empower Project’s themes: