Emma Walker

Emma Walker, Postgraduate Researcher in School of Education Profile Photo

I am a Postgraduate Researcher at York St. John University, in the School of Education. I completed a Foundation Degree, as mature student at York St. John, in 2013 and followed this with a BA (Hons) in Children, Young People and Families in 2014. I began my full-time PhD after being awarded a studentship in 2015

Further Information


Title: 'The Search for Sustainable School Change by the Light of Local Knowledge: A Narrative Inquiry'

This study uses narrative inquiry to reveal and examine how the force of centralised, mandated educational change can be challenged at a local level. It argues that the current 'school improvement' trajectory takes a de-located and de-historicised approach to change. Attending to 'local ways of knowing', creates a multi-contextual approach which re-locates the change agenda in time, place and space and develops a counter-narrative which mobilises local agency. This sees change re-constructed to match more closely the rhythm of the community it touches and hence it becomes both more effective and sustainable.

Supervisors: Dr Tony Leach and Professor Matthew Clarke 

Research interests: School change; educational leadership and management; education and community; place-based education; narrative inquiry as methodology.


Publications and Conferences

Walker, E. (2017) 'Don't you think it's like a prison here Sir?: Examining the implications of importing 'no excuses' school discipline to English schools' Paper presented at York St John University PGR Colloquium (Education, Languages, Linguistics) [7 April 2017] 

Walker, E: (2014) 'Follow the Leader?: Phenomenology as methodology in a small scale study on school leadership 'Paper presented at York St John University Undergraduate Research Conference [22 October 2014]

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