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Dr James Rees

Professional biography

James Rees is Anthony Nutt Senior Research Fellow in the Centre for Voluntary Sector Leadership. He joined the Open University in March 2016; prior to that he worked at the Universities of Birmingham and Manchester in a range of disciplines including Geography, Politics and Social Policy. His work is notably inter-disciplinary and is concerned with the voluntary sector in its broadest sense, but also more specifically in its relationship with current transformations in public services in the UK. At the Third Sector Research Centre, University of Birmingham, he led the public service delivery programme, research from which helped set the agenda for debates on the involvement of voluntary organisations in public services. His jointly-edited collection on The Third Sector delivering Public Services was published by Policy Press in July 2016.

Research interests

Recent research has focused on the role of the third sector in service delivery, cross-sectoral partnership, commissioning, and organisational change and the role of citizens and service users, drawing on a range of theoretical traditions in the fields of governance and organisational studies. He has also been involved in a range of applied and practical research projects particularly in relation to data labs and the reforms to probation services under ‘Transforming Rehabilitation’ with partners such as New Philanthropy Capital, Clinks and NCVO. He also has long-standing research interests in urban and regional governance, and has published more broadly on housing policy, urban regeneration and community and citizen engagement.

Teaching interests

James has taught widely at undergraduate and postgraduate level since 2007. At Birmingham he convened two Masters level modules on the Third Sector in Social Policy, and Social Policy Futures.

From October 2016 he will be supervising three Ou PhD students, focusing on areas such as health, mental health, leadership, online education and public and social value.

Publications

Commission incomplete: exploring the new model for purchasing public services from the third sector (2016-07)
Rees, James; Miller, Robin and Buckingham, Heather
Journal of Social Policy ((early access))
UK employment services: understanding provider strategies in a dynamic strategic action field (2016-04)
Taylor, Rebecca; Rees, James and Damm, Christopher
Policy and Politics, 44(2) (pp. 253-267)
Generating 'good enough' evidence for co-production (2016)
Durose, Catherine; Needham, Catherine; Mangan, Catherine and Rees, James
Evidence & Policy: A Journal of Research, Debate and Practice ((Early view))
New 'new localism' or the emperor's new clothes: diverging local social policies and state-voluntary sector relations in an era of localism (2015-03-01)
Rees, James and Rose, Nigel
Voluntary Sector Review , 6(1) (pp. 81-91)
Mental health commissioning: master or subject of change? (2014-10)
Miller, Robin and Rees, James
Mental Health Review Journal, 19(3) (pp. 145-155)
Responsible Citizens and Accountable Service Providers? Renegotiating the Contract Between Citizen and State (2014-07)
Richardson, Liz; Purdam, Kingsley; Cotterill, Sarah; Rees, James; Squires, Graham and Askew, Rebecca
Environment and Planning A, 46(7) (pp. 1716-1731)
Support for All in the UK Work Programme? Differential Payments, Same Old Problem (2014-04)
Rees, James; Whitworth, Adam and Carter, Elle
Social Policy and Administration, 48(2) (pp. 221-239)
Public sector commissioning and the third sector: Old wine in new bottles? (2014-01)
Rees, James
Public Policy and Administration, 29(1) (pp. 45-63)
'Beyond text': exploring ethos and method in co-producing research with communities (2014)
Beebeejaun, Yasminah; Durose, Catherine; Rees, James; Richardson, Joanna and Richardson, Liz
Community Development Journal, 49(1) (pp. 37-53)