Research Participants Needed for study on experiences of working with vulnerable groups in prisons

Have you recently worked for the HMPPS? Have you recently worked in roles that put you in direct contact with vulnerable prisoners? If you’ve retired from the Prison Service in the past 3-5 years and are keen to talk about your working experiences, you’re invited to take part in this research study!

About the project: This study is part of the Vulnerable State Project funded by the Leverhulme Trust. It seeks to engage various frontline workers in examining their working experiences and seeks to understand how these workers navigate competing objectives in their roles and how they handle the emotional tolls involved in doing their jobs. We’re a team of academic researchers from the University of Warwick keen to better understand questions of wellbeing and welfare among former prison staff. We aim to understand how work-based challenges, especially those linked to navigating objectives of care and control with regards to vulnerable populations, were managed in your day-to-day work at the Prison Service. The project has had full ethics approval from the University of Warwick and all interviews will be handled with full confidentiality and anonymity is guaranteed. Your data will not be shared with anyone outside of the research team and any information you provide will not identify you directly. 

What’s involved: You’re invited take part in a 1-hour interview with Dr. Ana Chamberlen (Associate Professor at the Department of Sociology, University of Warwick). Ana will ask you around 10 questions about your working experience in prisons and will invite you to share your perspectives on engaging with vulnerable or ‘at risk’ people in prison. You can choose to answer only those questions you wish and will have a chance to also ask your own questions too. Ana is happy to share more details on the content of the interview. Prior to the interview you will receive a detailed Participant Information Leaflet and a Consent Form which detail all you need to know about participating in the study. 

How to express interest: If you think taking part in this study may be of interest or if you’d like to hear more about taking part, please contact Ana at this email:

With thanks to the Prison Officers’ Association, who is partner and supporter of the project and has offered instrumental insights for the research design and the outcomes emerging from the project.

Representing over 30,000 Prison, Correctional and Secure Psychiatric Workers, the POA is the largest UK Union in this sector, able to trace its roots back more than 100 years.