6th Annual Weight Stigma Conference


Information for WSC delegates

Welcome to Prague! Hope you all had a safe trip and are enjoying the city. Registration tomorrow beings at 9am (we try to be civilised)! The conference centre is very large – our rooms will be closest to Entrance 1. See you tomorrow!

Happy Birthday to us!

Exactly four years ago to the day, the first Weight Stigma Conference was held in Birmingham, UK. I was a newbie PhD student, had access to a small amount of uni funding for putting on an event, and thought maybe six people in the UK might be working on weight stigma – I just didn’t know who they were. Despite just three months lead time, nearly 100 people squeezed into a room on the University of Birmingham campus on the day, and the Annual International Weight Stigma Conference was born. Four years later and one of the things I love most about running this conference is constantly being surprised and heartened to find out how many people care about this subject.

The Weight Stigma Conference has gone from strength to strength, attracting researchers and practitioners from many fields from all over the world. We’ve seen alliances made, ideas spawned, and a growing focus on understanding and addressing the problem of weight stigma, beyond just documenting how much of it exists.

Thank you to all of you who have supported the conference in any way in the last four years (and to those of you who have supported me personally when I was becoming somewhat frayed at the edges!).

This conference does not make money. We do our best to keep prices as low as possible. We also benefit from the support of a number of wonderful organisations, some of whom have been with us from the beginning. But we almost never have any money available to provide bursaries for those unable to attend due to financial restraints. And this is where you come in.

Not wanting to put prices up for everybody, instead, last year we launched an incredibly successful crowdfunding campaign to raise money for bursaries to the 4th Annual International Weight Stigma Conference, in Vancouver, Canada. And we’re doing it again this year. So far this year, your generosity has allowed us to provide three full and two partial bursaries to the our fifth conference, in Prague, Czech Republic, meaning five people were able to attend who otherwise wouldn’t have been able to. Four of those had been accepted to present their work, so your donations have helped us to make their research known to a wider audience.

But we are still short of our goal. There are still people who are hoping to get some last minute assistance, otherwise they won’t be able to attend. Please please please, continue to share our GoFundMe page, and maybe let people know why it’s important. If you haven’t already donated, please do think about doing so. Even a small amount, the kind of money you may spend on any given day without thinking about it, can make a difference.

Thank you again for all of your support and helping to make all this happen.


FYI. Five funding opportunities (large and small)


1. Wellcome Trust research fellowships for health professionals

These fellowships enable practising health professionals to carry out humanities or social science research in any area of health. Must be held at an eligible UK, ROI, or low- or middle-income country institution. Candidates should have completed general professional training and be a practising health professional with little or no research experience. Fellowships are tenable between six months and three years and are usually worth up to £350,000. They provide fellows with a basic salary, research expenses, materials and consumables, animals, equipment and travel and subsistence costs.

Deadline: 6 July 2017. More info


2. Wellcome Trust seed awards in science

These awards help researchers develop novel ideas that will go on to form part of larger grant applications to the trust or elsewhere. Funding supports a range of activities including pilot studies, scoping studies, preliminary data gathering, proof-of-principle studies, planning sessions and meetings of collaborative networks. Applicants must have completed a PhD or equivalent higher degree, be based in the UK, ROI, or a low- or middle-income country and receive personal salary support from the host. Applicants at the start of their independent careers who want to develop ideas outside their discipline or area of expertise are particularly encouraged to apply. Awards are worth up to £100,000 each over a maximum period of two years. Funding covers research expenses, materials and consumables, equipment, animals and travel.

Deadline: 3 July 2017. More info


3. MRC public health intervention development scheme

The Medical Research Council invites proposals for its public health intervention development scheme. This supports the early stages of development of public health interventions. Studies should address an important UK or global public health issue and offer an innovative approach to intervention development or applying an existing intervention in a new setting.The scope of the scheme includes qualitative and quantitative primary research. Eligible research includes: developing theory such as defining the intervention and specifying content; modelling process and outcomes such as developing logic models; identifying components and their interrelationships; developing procedures and protocols; creation of new interventions where active components of existing interventions are recombined. Research should be novel and high-risk, with a focus on non-healthcare settings, such as transport, education, employment, leisure and the built environment. Investigators are encouraged to include user participation in their development study. Awards are worth up to £150,000 for a maximum of 18 months.

Deadline: 13 July 2017. More info


4. The Education Endowment Foundation: General project funding.

 This funding supports projects that improve the educational attainment of children and young people from economically disadvantaged backgrounds in schools in England Applications may include: well-defined programmes with clear explanation of how they will be implemented within schools or educational settings; evidence that suggest that the intervention is effective at raising the attainment and skills of disadvantaged pupils; programmes that are scalable. Priority areas include math teaching at key stage 2/3, character and life skills development and science programmes across primary and secondary schools. Projects led by schools or focusing on early years education, primary schools, secondary schools and education after the age of 16 are also encouraged. Mainstream primary and secondary schools, further education colleges or sixth forms, early years settings, charities, local authorities, academy chains, companies, teaching multiacademy trusts or teaching school alliances, universities and social enterprises may apply. Funding must be used for an independent project and benefit multiple schools in England. There is no funding limit. Grants are usually worth between £90,000 and £1.5 million each. For-profit applicants are expected to substantially subsidise the project cost.
Deadline: 9 June 2017. More info


5. Lindsay bequest and Reid Trust research grants – mental and physical health

The Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh invites applications for the Lindsay bequest and Reid Trust research grants. These support research into links between mental and physical health.Eligible projects include pump priming projects or pilot work towards further grant or fellowship applications. Grants are typically worth up to £2,000 but up to £5,000 may be awarded for projects that have demonstrable added value.

Deadline: 2 June 2017. More info


FYI. Special issue of Self and Identity: Identity Fusion


CALL FOR PAPERS: Self and Identity, special issue on identity fusion

Deadline for proposals: 19th May 2017

When people “fuse with” a group, the combined force of social and personal identities may manifest itself. The motivational implications of such a union are profound, as they may include extreme sacrifices for the group, including self-sacrifice.

This special issue of Self and Identity will take research on identity fusion beyond its “dark side” (e.g. terrorism and aggression against out-groups) to include more positive consequences (e.g. ingroup helping, well-being effects, etc.). We are also interested in publishing research on antecedents of identity fusion (e.g. contexts or practices that increase and decrease the likelihood of becoming “fused”) as well as antecedents of “de-fusion” (e.g. contexts and practices that lead people to become less “fused”). Moreover, we are encouraging submissions that consider identity fusion through the lens of developmental and lifespan psychology. Finally, we encourage submissions that include diverse samples with particular emphasis on international samples. Other topics related to identity fusion, especially those that are theoretically or methodologically innovative, will also be considered.

Prospective authors should submit a one-page (single-spaced) abstract that includes information about the purpose of the study, sample, methods, and preliminary results. Proposals for brief reports are also welcome.

Abstracts should be submitted to both Guest Editors – Bill Swann (Swann@utexas.edu) and Sanaz Talaifar (Stalaifar@gmail.com) – by May 19, 2017.
Full manuscripts of submissions that we invite to move forward will be due September 1, 2017. We are also asking that authors who are invited to submit full manuscripts also review two other manuscripts for this special issue.

Please direct any inquiries (e.g., about suitability, timeline, etc.) to the Guest Editors, Bill Swann (Swann@utexas.edu) and Sanaz Talaifar (Stalaifar@gmail.com).

WSC 2017 delegates: postal voting in UK general election

For WSC delegates eligible to vote in the UK general election on June 8th, 2017:

As this year’s WSC is on 6th and 7th June, delegates eligible to vote in the UK general election on 8th June may wish to apply for a postal vote. Simply download the form here, and return to your local Electoral Registration Office. Your application to vote by post MUST be received by the appropriate office by 5pm on 23rd May, 2017.

5 weeks to go!

Just five weeks to go until this year’s Weight Stigma Conference in Prague, Czech Republic. Don’t forget to register. Visit stigmaconference.com for all the information about this year’s event.

We’re also still trying to raise a little extra funding to help with bursaries for those who need them. The WSC is a not-for-profit event, so your generosity here can make all the difference. Please visit gofundme.com/stigmaconf2017 to help out. Thank you so much.


WSC 2017: Programme announced

The full programme for the 5th Annual International Weight Stigma Conference is now available on the conference website at stigmaconference.com/programme

Also, we are still trying to raise funds for the WSC Bursary Fund. As a non-profit event, our budget tends to be very tight every year, and we rarely have funds available to assist those without funding or on low incomes who may struggle to attend. Last year we tried crowdfunding our bursaries for the first time and your generosity made this a very successful endeavour, providing seven bursaries for those in financial need. So far this year, we have raised enough for two bursaries, but we still need more.

Thank you to all those of you who have donated so far. If you haven’t yet, please, please consider making even a small donation to the fund, and sharing the webpage among your colleagues and networks. It is so gratifying to see the support of the weight stigma community and the academic community more generally make this possible. The funding site is: gofundme.com/stigmaconf2017. If you are attending this year, you can also make a donation during the registration process. Thank you so much.

FYI. 5 PhD scholarships inn Social Policy at University of Birmingham, UK

The School of Social Policy at the University of Birmingham is seeking to recruit to five full-time or part-time doctoral research scholarships to commence September 2017. Two scholarships of £9000 and three of £7500 per year are available. All scholarships include the UK/EU nationals level annual fee (£4,180 at current rates) and an annual research training and fieldwork support grant of £750. The remaining funds form a maintenance grant.

The successful candidates will have previously undertaken research training as part of an MA Social Research or equivalent programme, or will have demonstrated their research capacity through study and / or professional activity and be willing to undertake further research training.

We invite proposals in any field of research within the disciplines of the School of Social Policy (Social Work; Social Policy, Sociology and Criminology; and/or Health Policy and Health Management/Leadership). Proposals could also be aligned to one of our five cross-cutting research centres:

*   Centre on Household Assets and Savings Management (CHASM)
*   Family Potential
*   Institute of Mental Health (new centre in the process of being established)
*   Institute for Research into Superdiversity (IRiS)
*   Third Sector Research Centre (TSRC)

Please see the School website for details of our research and possible supervisors: http://www.birmingham.ac.uk/schools/social-policy/research/index.aspx>

Those currently involved in postgraduate research studying with the School of Social Policy or those who have been offered a place are eligible to apply for these scholarships.

How to apply:

1.      email a covering letter (no more 750 words) and research proposal (no more than 3 pages A4, size 12 font) in support of your application for funding to Dr Kerry Allen (Director of Postgraduate Research) socialpolicy-doctoralresearch@contacts.bham.ac.uk

2.      submit your full application to one of our full time doctoral programmes (follow this link here to make your application). http://www.birmingham.ac.uk/schools/social-policy/courses/research-degrees/courses/index.aspx

The application letter and course application must have been submitted by Friday 12 May, 5pm.

Please feel free to contact Dr Kerry Allen informally at k.allen@bham.ac.uk to discuss any aspects of your application or to ask any questions about studying for a PhD at the University of Birmingham.

Early-bird registration deadline just a few days away

Don’t forget, if you’re planning on attending the WSC this year, early-bird registration is available until Saturday 15th April. The full-price will come into effect from 16th April. Register here.

Also, we are still trying to fund raise for our Bursary Fund. Every donation helps, no matter how small. More information here.

FYI. Several lectureship positions in Psychology available at Aston University, UK


Aston University, Birmingham, UK are advertising the following positions in Psychology:

Lecturer – Brain and Behaviour
Senior Lecturer – Health Psychology
2 Lectureships – areas unspecified

Applicants are encouraged to contact the Head of Psychology, Professor Helen Pattison (0121-204 4073; email: h.m.pattison@aston.ac.uk) for informal discussion about the posts before applying. You may also wish to consult the Research Directors, Dr Claire Farrow for AHRG (0121-204 5384; email: c.farrow@aston.ac.uk) and Professor Brian Roberts for BANG (0121-204 3887; email: b.roberts@aston.ac.uk).

More info: https://jobs.aston.ac.uk/
Deadline for all positions: 1st May.