Carmen Clayton


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Personal profile


Carmen joined Leeds Trinity University in 2010 and is Professor of Family and Cultural Dynamics. Carmen’s research interests revolve around young people, families and childhood with specific expertise concerning young fatherhood, migration, ethnicity and culture. 
Carmen’s recent research has investigated the impact of lockdown for a diverse set of parents and young people. The ‘British Families in Lockdown’ study/BFiL regularly engages with policy makers and policy debates (e.g., submitting oral and written evidence to various UK Parliment Select Committee inquiries, contributing to UK Parliment POSTnote reports, invited meetings and presentations), alongside national media interest (e.g. The Guardian and BBC).  BFiL has also collaborated with national and international partners as part of this research.

Carmen is the Co-Investigator of the 'New Uses of Screens in Post Lockdown Britain' which is led by the University of Leeds, which is connected to the BFiL project. 
Carmen's young fatherhood research includes several studies and this has spanned over twelve years. Her latest study, 'Connected Young Fatherhood: Rural and Urban Experiences' was in collaboration with Daddilife, Leeds City Council and the County Councils Network. This study focused on young fathers' employment and professional support experiences during the pandemic. 
'Connected Young Fatherhood' builds on Carmen's former study- ‘New Pathways for Young Fathers’- which investigated young fathers’ EET (employment, education, and training) and NEET (not in employment, education, and training) trajectories, formal support provision available and wider policy implications. Prior to this, she undertook research which explored young fathers’ higher education interests and she was a recipient of ESRC (Economic Social Research Council) funding to conduct a qualitative longitudinal study on young fatherhood and service support needs at the University of Leeds between 2012-15.
Carmen is also involved in several external committees, is a peer reviewer for a range of academic journals and publishers and funders. 

Research interests

Carmen’s research has been recognised on a local, national and international level. This includes for example, collaborative working with local practitioners (and new initiatives), presentations for the APPG (All Party Parliamentary Group) on Fatherhood and an invited consultation with the Head of the Child Maintenance Strategy Group at the Department of Work and Pensions.


Before Carmen joined Leeds Trinity University she was a Research Fellow at the University of Leeds.

Teaching and Administration

Carmen teaches on a variety of undergraduate and postgraduate modules with the Institute of Childhood and Education. As well as teaching, Carmen is the Co-Chair of the ICE (Institute of Childhood and Education) Ethics and Integrity Sub-Committee.


Current teaching provision includes:

  • International Perspectives on Child Welfare (Master’s Degree)
  • Difficulties Families Face (BA Level 6)
  • Research Methods: Evidence Informed Practice (BA Level 5)


Student supervision includes:

  • PhD supervision
  • Research Dissertation Supervision (Master’s Degree)
  • Research Project/ Dissertation supervision (BA Level 6)


Before teaching at Leeds Trinity University, Carmen taught at the University of Leeds (Department of Sociology and Social Policy), supervised MA Dissertation students and was involved in PhD panels. Nominations include a Personal Tutor Awards at the University of Leeds (2009).

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy, University of Leeds

… → 2009

Master of Arts, Leeds Beckett University

… → 2006

Bachelor of Arts, University of Leeds

… → 2005

External positions

External Examiner , University of Hull

PhD supervisor University of Tours, France , University of Tours


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