These pages have been put together largely in response to requests for details of, and links to, books and articles on education and community development. One or two people have also asked about the research projects I have been involved in – and my background and experience.
Tony Jeffs and I have been undertaking research for a new book that explores the current environments that educators have to operate within. In particular, we focus on the fundamental mistakes being made by policymakers, academics and those charged with developing practice in schools, colleges and local communities.
Much like Tomison’s Academy (pictured above) – which is in South Ronaldsay and on the Buildings at Risk Register – there is a danger of dereliction. We argue there is a need to re-imagine education and that the differences between pedagogy and teaching matter. Understanding this is central to developing an alternative way of approaching schooling, informal education and community development.
Click for details of previous projects.
Thanks to the need to research the book above – and to undertake work around collaborative housing – only a few articles have appeared in recent years. Here are three of them:
Why cohousing is good for people and communities – the evidence. Here, I examine five key claims for cohousing and collaborative housing, and the evidence there is to support them. [HCH 2022, 2024]
The education of informal educators. The article explores the emergence of informal education and highlights some key failings in the professional education of practitioners – and how they can be addressed. [Tony Jeffs and Mark K Smith, Education Sciences 2021]
Ruth Kotinsky on adult education and lifelong learning. Building a life in common. Ruth Kotinsky made several important contributions to thinking about lifelong learning and welfare. Of particular interest was her exploration of adult education as an aspect of everyday life and working together to build a life in common. 
Click for a full listing of articles with links where available.
Nearly all of the books that I have been involved with have been digitized and are available online. In the books section, you can click through to them. Also, you will find new epub (kobo etc.) and mobi (kindle) versions of the following:
I edit infed.org – a space where people can explore education, pedagogy, community-building, and change. Alongside this, I am part of a team developing a community-led affordable rental housing initiative close to where I live in Orkney. Formerly the Rank Research Fellow and Tutor at the YMCA George Williams College, London, I have also been a visiting professor in community education at the University of Strathclyde.
Click for further details.