Applied Social Sciences, Forensics and Politics

Police officers in the street talking to the public

Welcome to the Department of Applied Social Sciences, Forensics and Politics

The department is home to a high-quality range of programmes in the following broad subject areas:

  • Animal Welfare and Society
  • Criminology, including Cyber Crime and Policing
  • Forensic Investigation
  • Politics, including Economics and International Relations
  • Sociology

Our undergraduate courses in Criminology, Forensic Investigation, Politics and Sociology draw on the expertise of our own staff as well as specialists from across the University such as from Philosophy, Law, Liberal Arts, Linguistics and Psychology, and beyond.

At postgraduate level, we offer an MSc in Applied Criminology and an MA in Politics and International Relations, and we warmly welcome enquiries about postgraduate research. For more information on postgraduate research, see below. 

We offer a stimulating, multidisciplinary environment that puts itself at the forefront of the study of a range of contemporary social issues such as creativity, identity, investigation and insecurity. Our dynamic staff are leading innovative undergraduate programmes, and their wealth of experience in teaching, research and practice helps our students address many questions that are crucial to understanding the rapidly changing world in the 21st century.

We are leading the way in producing creative, dynamic research that makes a difference in the real world. All of our staff are actively engaged in research and engagement and the creation of new knowledge that feeds directly into our programmes.

We work collaboratively for positive change in the local, national and global community. The Department has developed strong external relationships and students have been able to do placements with a wide variety of organisations. In some cases this has led to subsequent employment. Students are encouraged to be proactive about placements and to seek out their own work experience opportunities within their course; however, a number of staff maintain close links with a range of external organisations and are able to provide advice and assistance.

Watch our Criminology subject video:


The Forensics team also runs regular outreach activities such as inviting local Scouts to become real-life forensic investigators solving a crime

People in forensics lab using ultra violet camera

The department has dedicated specialist facilities and we are well equipped to undertake both fieldwork and laboratory-based projects. Explore our facilities.

Our Forensics laboratory was opened by David Suchet, a.k.a. Hercule Poirot, watch the video.

More to explore

Meet the team

Animal Welfare and Society

Our Animal Welfare and Society staff are based in the high-profile Centre for Animal Welfare.

Find out more about the University of Winchester Centre for Animal Welfare and meet the team.

Criminology and Policing

Criminology and Policing

Academic staff

Visiting lecturers

Forensic Investigation

Visiting Lecturers




Other Lecturing staff

Research and laboratory staff

David Ashby, Forensic Investigation Laboratory Technician

Visiting Research/Knowledge Exchange Fellows

Research in Applied Social Sciences, Forensics and Politics

Research strengths

Research in Animal Welfare and Society

Research in Animal Welfare and Society is focussed on human-animal studies and animal welfare science, ethics and law, in particular:

  • the ethics and policy of animal protection
  • the impact of Brexit on animal protection
  • zoo welfare assessment, and the interplay between cognition, environmental enrichment, welfare and conservation

to find out more, explore the Centre for Animal Welfare website

Research in Criminology, Forensics and Policing

Crime scene investigation; cybercrime; forensic archaeology and forensic linguistics (for Forensic Psychology, see Psychology Research).

Departmental Criminologists also play a key role in the Criminal Justice Research Networka collaboration of practitioners and academics working in the field of criminal justice, led by University of Winchester forensic psychology, criminology and policing experts. 

Research in Politics

Political economy, financial crises, neoliberalism and capitalist restructuring, financialisation and the political economy of labour and production, international relations, war and conflict, terrorism and security, contemporary US politics and US foreign policy, China, NATO, the EU, Brexit, and the relationship between politics and gender.

Research in Sociology

Social welfare from a socio-legal perspective; gender, feminism and social activism; migration and diasporas; social sustainability; people's experiences with housing and the urban built environment, and energy and environmental technology.

Recent Research News

Forensic Investigation team launches Cold Case Unit

Established in February 2021, the department's Cold Case Unit (CCU) aims to develop the next generation of leading investigators. Supported by the academic team and in collaboration with the charity Locate International, the CCU provides an opportunity for our Forensic Investigation students to learn about the complexities and challenges of cold case investigations. 

Blog: Trumpism and the Italian Strategy of Tension

What can modern history tell us about the Trump era? Criminologists Dr Matt Clement and Dr Vincenzo Scalia draw parallels between Trumpism and 20-century Italian politics, and reveal some eerie similarities.

Social Justice research at Winchester: Black Lives Matter protesters

Image by Life Matters on Pexels

Winchester sociologist shines new light on old conflict

Dr Ulrike Ziemer is an expert on the socio-political situation in the South Caucasus, and has been providing expert commentary on the conflict over the fiercely contested region of Nagorno-Karabakh.

In October 2020, she was interviewed by Thomas Kenchington, a research student at University College London. Reflecting on the first ten days of the war, Dr Ziemer said: "This is the worst clash since he cease-fire of 1994", adding that "we could face a new humanitarian crisis". Listen to the full UCL interview on Nagorno-Karabakh with Dr Ziemer.

In November, she contributed to the Centre for Religion, Reconciliation and Peace's podcasts in the Talking Peace, Exploring Conflict Thought Leader series. Listen to the podcast Cycles of Conflict: displacement and a call to end the war in Nagorno-Karabakh. 

Dr Ziemer has also written a blog for the Political Studies Association on the effects of the conflict on women. Read the blog Nagorno-Karabakh: caught between peace and war.

Her work has led to a REF Impact Case study titled Women and militarisation in the South Caucasus.

Sociopolitical expertise at Winchester: image of tank memorial to 1992 Nagorno Karabakh war

Tank memorial to the capture of Shusha in the first Nagorno-Karabakh war (image by Raffi Kojian on Wikipedia)

Postgraduate research supervision

We offer research supervision in a wide range of subjects. To find out more, explore our academic staff profile pages above for individual areas of supervision or use the Find an Expert search bar below.

Visit the Research Degrees section to find out everything you need to know about postgraduate research degrees at Winchester.