I have taught and researched at the Open University in Sociology of Education (Faculty of Educational Studies) and in Social Policy (Faculty of Social Sciences) since completing my Master’s Degree. I have also been Associate Dean for External Relations and for Academic Standards and Quality in both Faculties, and continue to work in a range of quality assurance and governance roles in the University, and as a reviewer for the Quality Assurance Agency.
I am a member of the Editorial Board of the Journal of Social Policy.
My principal research interest is in policy development and the governance of young people at the interface between social policy and youth justice policies. The focus of this work is on young people who are defined as non-participants at the margins of compulsory participation in education and entry into the labour market, mandatory training or unemployment. My work explores these points of policy intersection theoretically and empirically at a number of levels. Prominent amongst these are the construction of young people as a disengaged and economically inactive population, their positioning within welfare systems in conditions of endemic failures of demand for their labour, the increasing criminalisation of some modes of non-participation, and the emergence of transnational policy responses to the now universal problem of youth unemployment and marginalisation. This work draws on a range of disciplines, including sociology, political economy, and labour market analyses as well as social policy and criminology.
I am a member of the International Centre for Comparative Criminological Research (ICCCR).
Fergusson, R. (2014, in press) ‘Regulate or Abandon: two-speed tracks to criminalising precarious youth’, Criminal Justice Matters, 95,1.
Fergusson, R. (2014, in press) ‘Warehouse, Marketise, Shelter, Juridify: on the political economy and governance of extending school participation in England’, in Farnsworth, K. and Irving, Z. (eds) (2014, in press) Social Policy Review, 26, Bristol Policy Press.
Drake, D., Fergusson, R and Briggs, D. (2014, in press) ‘ Hearing New Voices: reviewing youth justice policy through practitioners’ relationships with young people’, Youth Justice, 14,1.
Fergusson, R. (2013) ‘Against disengagement: non-participation as an object of governance’. Research in Post-Compulsory Education, 18(1), pp. 12–18.
Fergusson, R. (2013) ‘Risk, responsibilities and rights: reassessing the “economic causes of crime” thesis in a recession’. Youth Justice, 13(1), pp. 31–56.
Fergusson, R. and Yeates, N. (2013). ‘Business, as usual: the policy priorities of the World Bank’s discourses on youth unemployment and the global financial crisis’, Journal of International and Comparative Social Policy, 1(1).
Fergusson, R. and Yeates, N. (2013/4). ‘The normative and ideational foundations of international governmental organisations' discourses on global youth unemployment policies’, Policy and Politics, 42, 2/3 (published online, June 2013) .
A repository of research publications and other research outputs can be viewed at The Open University's Open Research Online.
I have written for more than a dozen undergraduate and postgraduate modules, including as book editor, block coordinator and Module Team Chair, most recently:
DD305 Personal Lives and Social Policy
DD208 Welfare, Crime and Society
DD301 Crime and Justice: Local and Global
DD206 The Uses of Social Science
DD312 Social Policy: Inequality, Wealth, Poverty
|International Centre for Comparative Criminological Research (ICCCR)||Centre||Faculty of Social Sciences|
International governmental organisations and global youth unemployment: the normative and ideational foundations of policy discourses (2014-07-01)
Fergusson, Ross and Yeates, Nicola
Policy & Politics, 42(3) (pp. 439-458)
Hearing new voices: re-viewing youth justice policy through practitioners’ relationships with young people (2014-04-30)
Drake, Deborah H.; Fergusson, Ross and Briggs, Damon B.
Youth Justice, 14(1) (pp. 22-39)
Regulate or abandon: two-speed tracks to criminalising precarious youth (2014)
Criminal Justice Matters, 96(1) (pp. 18-19)
Risk, responsibilities and rights: reassessing the ‘economic causes of crime’ thesis in a recession (2013-04)
Youth Justice, 13(1) (pp. 31-56)
Against disengagement: non-participation as an object of governance (2013-02)
Research in Post-Compulsory Education, 18(1-2) (pp. 12-28)
‘Business, as usual: the policy priorities of the World Bank's discourses on youth unemployment, and the global financial crisis' (2013)
Fergusson, Ross and Yeates, Nicola
Journal of International and Comparative Social Policy, 29(1) (pp. 64-78)
Making sense of the melting pot: multiple discourses in youth justice policy (2007-12)
Youth Justice, 73(3) (pp. 179-194)
“Disappearing” discrimination? The New Deal, ethnicity and the limits of policy evaluation (2007-07)
Youth and Policy(96) (pp. 65-85)
Discourses of exclusion: reconceptualising participation amongst young people (2004)
Journal of Social Policy, 33(2) (pp. 289-320)
Young people, welfare and crime: governing non-participation (2016-02-24)
ISBN : 978-1-44730-701-3 | Publisher : Policy Press | Published : Bristol, UK
‘Warehouse, commodify, shelter, juridify: on the political economy and governance of extending school participation in England’ (2014-06-26)
In: Farnsworth, Kevin; Irving, Zoë and Fenger, Menno eds. Analysis and debate in social policy, 2014. Social Policy Review (26) (pp. 47-64)
ISBN : 9781447315568 | Publisher : The Policy Press | Published : Bristol
Is there a link between youth poverty and crime? The answers may surprise you (2015-11-05)