VSSN Annual General Meeting 2019

Annual General Meeting

The VSSN Annual General Meeting will be held on Thursday, 28th November 2019 at 2.15 – 2.35pm at WISERD, the Wales Institute of Social and Economic Research, Data and Methods at Cardiff University. It is open to all members of VSSN although non-members are also welcome, but without voting rights. Members who want to attend the AGM only may do so without paying for the whole day conference.

The agenda for the AGM is as follows:

1. Apologies and introductions

2. Minutes of the AGM 2018

3. Matters arising

4. Chair’s report

5. Adoption of the Annual Report and Accounts for the year ending

6. Election of Steering Group members

7. Election of Editorial Management Board members

Apologies should be sent to Ann Hindley – execofficer@vssn.org. Please also let us know if you are attending the AGM only. We will still be pleased to see you.

Nominations for Steering Group and Editorial Management Board


VSSN Steering Group elections 2019


This year there are three vacancies for the Steering Group.

The following VSSN members have put themselves forward for election.


Jane Cullingworth

Glasgow University


I have been involved in the Steering Group for the past three years and am keen to continue my involvement.  Over the past three years I have focused my contribution on supporting new researchers.  I co-chair the new researchers stream of the annual conference and host an email discussion list specifically for new researchers.  I love being involved in this aspect of VSSN’s work – I find it very rewarding and am keen to continue.  Over the past two years I have also taken on the role of Co-Chair, giving me experience in all aspects the VSSN’s work.

I bring a lot of enthusiasm to the role as well as good communication and organisational skills.  By virtue of the fact that I am based in Glasgow, I bring a Scottish perspective to VSSN, something I think is particularly important in a UK wide network.  I still consider myself new to academia even though I am close to finishing my PhD.  Prior to beginning my studies, I worked in the third sector for over 30 years in Canada and the UK.


Jurgen Grotz

Institute for Volunteering Research


I am a Senior Research Fellow at the University of East Anglia and the Director of the Institute of Volunteering Research there.   Born in Germany in 1963, I received my MA in 1992 for work on disability in China, and my PhD in 1996 from the University of London for my work on Chinese Braille.  I am an academic and practitioner with 25 years’ experience of applied research, working with volunteer-involving organisations, the market and the state.   I have been collaborating with colleagues in VSSN since 2008 in several ways and have presented at seven of its annual research conferences, and was discussant for the Early Researcher sessions at three of them.

I trust that my research focus on volunteering, civic participation and inclusion as well as the Institute for Volunteering Research’s multi disciplinary approach fit well with VSSN’s purpose of advancing knowledge and understanding of organisations, the market and the state.

As Director of the Institute for Volunteering Research based at the University of East Anglia, I am now in a position to actively support the endeavours of VSSN in particular by promoting understanding  of the UK voluntary sector through research and by providing a voice and a meeting place for voluntary sector researchers and also co-developing scientifically robust ways to show the difference volunteering and volunteering research make, extending VSSN’s reach both nationally and internationally.

Vita Terry


I have over ten years of experience in the voluntary sector in various capacities, developing extensive expertise, and specialisms on asylum seekers and refugees, social change, organisational behaviour, small and medium-sized organisations, and service provision. I have demonstrated my commitment and passion towards the voluntary sector, completing both my Masters and PhD research on topical issues, acting as a trustee for a small charity supporting those living with HIV, and produced various documentaries on issues of social change. This also demonstrates the advantage of bringing a practitioner perspective as well as thinking about how to make academic research useful and useable for different audiences.

I have actively contributed to wider academia by peer reviewing articles for Voluntary Sector Review; coordinating a PhD writing retreat with Voluntary Sector Review; and organising a Voluntary Sector Studies Network day conference on diversity. This demonstrates that I have been proactive in instigating events to support others and to promote discussion on relevant issues.

 Since November, I have been co-opted as a steering group member for VSSN due to these previous achievements outlined above. I have found it to be an enjoyable and worthwhile experience and would like to continue in this role. I have proven I am a valuable member to the group, by actively taking part and inputting into discussion, and also co-writing (with Rob Macmillan) a proposal to set up a small grant scheme run by VSSN.


Caroline Walsh


Caroline has over 20 years experience in the volunteer sector ranging from volunteer to volunteer management and governance positions in number of charities and not for profits. She has over a decade experience of teaching and facilitating in higher education. Caroline’s passion, as well as a research focus, has been accessible travel and volunteering through tourism.

In the last 6 years and half years Caroline has been at the forefront of and active in local, regionally and national civic campaigning at all levels & in key roles. On the ground and online. Ongoing campaigning includes all transport accessibility, rail, disability awareness, greater inclusion in all levels of society, NHS and inclusive civic volunteering.

From 2000 -2013 Caroline was a key volunteer organiser for the annual national conference at London Zoo. The aim of this interdisciplinary conference is to facilitate dialogue between policy makers, campaigners, researchers, Non- Government Organisations and the General Public about the importance of reef conservation at a policy level, nationally and internationally. She still regularly arranges events in all her current volunteer roles.


VSSN Editorial Management Board election 2019

 This year there are two vacancies for the Editorial Management Board

The following VSSN members have put themselves forward for election.

Jurgen Grotz I am a Senior Research Fellow at the University of East Anglia and the Director of the Institute of for Volunteering Research there.  I am an academic and practitioner with 25 years’ experience of applied research, working with voluntary associations and volunteer involving  organisations, with a strong focus on participative approaches.  I have extensive experience of making research knowledge available  in accessible formats, engaging academic and non-academic communities.  I have, for example, contributed to IVR reports  such as ‘Exploring the Relationship between Volunteer Centres and local authorities’ and ‘A gateway to work’.  I have also provided a background paper to the project on ‘The State of World’s Volunteering Report 2011’ by the UN Volunteers and recently co-edited the Palgrave Handbook of Volunteering, Civic Participation and Nonprofit Associations, which had 200 contributors from 70 nations.  I am currently an Associate Editor of Voluntaristics Review and review contributions for peer reviewed journals, including VSR.

I trust that my experience in both academic and non academic publishing fits well with VSR’s ambition to reach a range of audiences including academic , policy and practice, nationally and internationally.  Furthermore my research interest of volunteering, civic participation, and inclusion fits well with VSR’s focus on the origins and nature of volunteering, the experiences of user groups and social activism.

I am particularly interested in increasing the range of disciplines publishing in VSR and trust that my interdisciplinary work at UEA, nationally and internationally, will support this endeavor.



University College, Cork

I have just completed three years on the VSR Editorial Management Board, during which I learned much about the operation of the journal, some of the challenges it faces and its potential into the future.  I hope I have also contributed in trying to develop it into a renown international journal.  I feel that a second term, would enable me play a bigger role in that regard.  In my view the journal needs to be developed into an internationally read and renown journal for it to become sustainable and relevant into the future.  I think that my experience working both inside and outside the UK would be a benefit.  I have been Programme Director for the Masters in Voluntary and Community Sector Management at University College Cork for the past 14 years and teach/ research in the area of social policy/community development. Previously I’ve lectured at Ulster University and Queens in Belfast.  I’ve had a lifetime of involvement in voluntary sector activity, in Ireland, North and South, in Welfare rights, Community Education, and with organisations like NICVA, NICAB, Community Technical Aid NI (of which I was a co-founder) and Community Work Ireland.  I have served on a number of Editorial Boards – e.g. Welfare Rights News (Belfast Law Centre), Just News (CAJ) and as Deputy Editor of SCOPE magazine (NICVA).  I currently peer-review for a number of international journals (including VSR) and ISTR.  I believe I can contribute a comparative international perspective to the journal, with an understanding of trends in policy and practice as well as experience in editing.


Joanne Vincett 

The Open University

As an early career researcher at the end of my doctoral studies at The Open University, I would like to serve on the VSR Editorial Management Board and help promote the VSSN and journal.

I bring to the VSR Editorial Management Board, my leadership and networking skills, commitment, attention to detail, and collaborative and supportive nature. I have six years of practitioner and volunteering experience leading teams and collaborating as a team member in charities/not-for-profits/NGOs in the West Indies, Switzerland, Austria, USA and UK, and three years of governance experience as a former trustee, responsible for fundraising, of Yarl’s Wood Befrienders in the UK.

In addition, I bring to the Board my enthusiasm for research and dissemination of voluntary sector studies and my reviewing and publishing experience. I have been a peer reviewer for Gender, Place and Culture (Taylor & Francis), Ethnography (Sage) and Journal of Organizational Ethnography (Emerald). I also have experience working with editorial teams from The Conversation, Discover Society, Journal of Organizational Ethnography and the book editors of Social Work with Refugees, Asylum Seekers and Migrants: Theory and Skills for Practice (Jessica Kingsley Publishers) where my research has been published (2017 to 2019).

My 2018 article in Journal of Organizational Ethnography was selected by the editors for the ‘Outstanding Paper Award’ for that year in the Emerald Literati Awards for Excellence. I have also been the recipient of the ‘Campbell Adamson Memorial Prize for Best Paper for New Researchers’ at the 2018 VSSN Conference.



Voluntary Sector Review: Call for Practice and Book Reviews Editors

The Voluntary Sector Studies Network (VSSN) and Policy Press invite applications for the positions of Practice Editor and Book Reviews Editor to join the current editorial team for the Voluntary Sector Review from February 2019 to December 2022.

Voluntary Sector Review (VSR) is a journal with a growing international profile that publishes high-quality, peer-reviewed, accessible papers on third sector research, policy and practice.

The new Practice Editor will join an existing Practice Editor, and will focus on editing practice-oriented papers. S/he will work closely with the VSR Editorial Team, the Editorial Management Board and Policy Press. Tasks that the Practice Editor will undertake include:

  • receiving submissions, identifying suitable referees, making editorial decisions on acceptance, revision or rejection in the light of referees’ reports
  • maintaining and further developing the national and international reputation of the journal
  • commissioning articles, encouraging submissions, and supporting authors for the Practice section
  • participating in person or virtually in twice yearly meetings of the Editorial Management Board.

The new Book Reviews Editor will focus on identifying and receiving suitable books for review, inviting and supporting reviewers, and editing reviews. S/he will work closely with the VSR Editorial Team, the Editorial Management Board and Policy Press.

Job Descriptions for both roles can be found here.

The Editorial Management Board of VSR is looking forward to receiving applications from those interested in taking up these positions on the editorial team of the journal from February 2019 for an initial period of three years.


The deadline for applications is 10th January 2019. Applications should be sent to: d.kamerade-hanta@salford.ac.uk.

Applicants should have experience of research, research methods, academic writing and /or teaching in a relevant field, as well as experience of working or volunteering in the voluntary sector/civil society arena.

All applicants are asked to provide a short CV highlighting relevant experience.

Applicants for Practice Editor should also provide a brief account of their strategic plans to maintain and develop the VSR’s Practice Section.

Prospective applicants are welcome to contact the current Practice Editor (Chris Dayson – c.dayson@shu.ac.uk) and Book Reviews Editor (James Rees – james.rees@open.ac.uk) informally to discuss the roles further.

Prospective applicants may also contact other members of the selection committee:

Daiga Kamerade, Chair of the Editorial Management Board (d.kamerade-hanta@salford.ac.uk)

Rob Macmillan, Editor (rob.macmillan@shu.ac.uk)

Julia Mortimer, Publisher (julia.mortimer@bristol.ac.uk)

Shortlisted candidates will be interviewed by the Selection Committee.

Conference report and presentations – Diversity in the spotlight

The report and all presentations from our recent conference, Diversity in the spotlight: highlighting perspectives on race, culture and migrants, are now available to download.

Thank you to all our speakers and attendees for a very stimulating start to what we hope will be a series of events exploring the marginalisation or absence of diverse groups from voluntary sector research and debates.

VSSN Steering Group and VSR Editorial Management Board nominations

Nominations for places on the VSSN Steering Group and the Editorial Management Board (EMB) of our journal, Voluntary Sector Review, have now been received.

In each case, the number of nominations did not exceed the number of vacant places, so an election was not required.

Click to read the candidate statements for the VSSN Steering Group and Editorial Management Board.

Angela Ellis-Paine, Co-Chair of the VSSN Steering Group:

“We were delighted to receive three nominations for the VSSN Steering Group. All the nominations were from current Steering Group members who had either come to the end of their first term of office or who had previously been co-opted members. You can read their nomination statements here.

With three nominations for three vacancies, the elections were uncontested and all three will be warmly welcomed back on to the Steering Group at our AGM in November. Chris, Chris and Jon have already made considerable contributions to VSSN, and we look forward to continuing to work with them over the next three years”

Daiga Kamerade, Chair of the Voluntary Sector Review Editorial Management Board:

“We received three nominations for the places on the Editorial Management Board: Mike Hemmings (York St. John University, UK ), Rita Mano (University of Haifa, Israel), and Jon Dean (Sheffield Hallam University, UK). You can read their nomination statements here. With three nominations for three vacancies, the elections were uncontested and we look forward to their contribution to the Board over the next three years.”

Call for nominations: VSSN Steering Group and Voluntary Sector Review Editorial Management Group

Would you like to support the work of VSSN more actively? Do you have ideas about how you’d like to see the network develop?

If so, please consider nominating yourself for a place on either or both of:

  • the VSSN Steering Group
  • the Editorial Management Board (EMB) of Voluntary Sector Review, the journal produced by VSSN with Policy Press

It is a self-nomination process; you do not need to be nominated by someone else.

Simply complete the VSSN Steering Group nomination form and/or the Voluntary Sector Review Editorial Management Board nomination form and return by email by 19th October.

You must be a paid-up member of VSSN by 22nd October in order to nominate yourself.  New members are welcome!

If you would like to be more involved but don’t want to join the Steering Group or Editorial Management Board, there are other voluntary roles which are equally valuable and help us develop our networks and activities. For example, we would welcome help with moderating the VSSN email discussion list.  This is an important role but not an onerous one. It would only take a few minutes of your time each week and full training will be available if required.  If you are interested in finding out more about this role please contact me at a.ellispaine@bham.ac.uk.

More information about the roles and the election process here. We look forward to receiving your nomination.

Conference bookings now open, with big discounts for VSSN members!

Bookings are now open for the 2018 Voluntary Sector and Volunteering Research Conference conference, with big discounts for VSSN members.

Organised by VSSN in partnership with NCVO, this conference provides a unique opportunity for academics, policy makers and practitioners from the UK and further afield to come together to share and discuss research that addresses the conference theme, as well as broader issues facing the voluntary sector and volunteering at this time.

This year’s theme is ‘Trust, transparency and accountability of charities and voluntary organisations: challenges for policy, practice and research‘.

Early bird rates now available. Find out more about the conference and book your place here.