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Debbie Foster is Professor of Employment Relations & Diversity in Cardiff Business School and Dr Natasha Hirst is an independent photojournalist and researcher. Both researchers are disabled people.
Debbie’s original research focus was public sector employment relations and trade unionism. However, she became interested in research on disability and employment following a personal experience of long term ill-health and secured ESRC funding to conduct a project that documented the lived experiences of negotiating workplace ‘reasonable’ adjustments. This has since led to further research projects with trade unions and social partners at the European, national and regional levels.
She first met Natasha Hirst in her role as Equality Officer for Wales TUC. Natasha’s role was to develop a new network of trade union equality representatives throughout Wales and Debbie conducted research into equality representative experiences of representing disabled members. Natasha then moved into photography and journalism, specialising in equalities and politics.
Read about Debbie’s research background on her Cardiff University profile.
More information about Natasha on LinkedIn.
Cardiff Business School is a Public Value Business School, working to deliver both economic improvement and social improvement, recognising the role that business and management has to play in tackling some of the grand challenges in contemporary society.
Debbie and Natasha have previously co-operated on a CARBS Public Value project and set up a blog (with Prof. Ralph Fevre of SOCSI) to highlight disability and employment research at Cardiff: Cardiff Research on Employment & Disability.
In December 2016 (with Ralph, Prof. Vikki Wass & Prof. Melanie Jones) Debbie and Natasha also co-organised a conference ‘Closing Disability Gaps in Employment’ to coincide with the Government consultation on this subject.
For further information about the funder see the DRILL (Disability Research into Independent Living and Learning) website.