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The Ben Pimlott Writer in Residence Programme

The Department of Politics launched the Ben Pimlott Writer in Residence Programme in 2014. This programme allows suitably qualified writers to spend up to a year at Birkbeck. During this time, the Ben Pimlott Writer in Residence will work on a book or series of articles on a political theme aimed at a broad readership. He or she will also be expected to contribute to the intellectual life of the Department. This is an unpaid position but the Writer in Residence will receive access to computing facilities, the library and office space. Mentoring from members of the Department of Politics will also be provided, where appropriate.

The Ben Pimlott Writer in Residence Programme is named in honour of the late Ben Pimlott, who was Professor of Politics at Birkbeck between 1981 and 1998. Highly regarded for his research on British politics, the Labour Party and the trade union movement, he also wrote widely read biographies of Queen Elizabeth, Hugh Dalton and Harold Wilson. Naming the programme after Ben Pimlott is a tribute not only to his time at Birkbeck but also his commitment to, and passion for, fine political writing.

Ben Pimlott Writer in Residence 2016

The Ben Pimlott Writer in Residence for 2016 is is Richard Clarke. Richard undertakes research, evaluation and training related to heritage management with a particular emphasis on community engagement and working at a ‘landscape’ scale. Richard taught at Birkbeck from 1988 to 2011, where from 1999 to 2003 he was Head of the School of Social and Natural Sciences within the then Faculty of Continuing Education. Since 2013 Richard has been Visiting Scholar at PrOBE, Westminster Business School, University of Westminster. As Writer in Residence, Richard will focus on aspects of the ‘hidden history’ of Birkbeck College.

Expressions of interest for participation in the Ben Pimlott Writer in Residence Programme should be sent to Dr Dermot Hodson, who directs the programme, and Prof. Deborah Mabbett. Applicants should have a strong track record as a writer, a specific writing project in mind and a clear rationale for wanting to come to Birkbeck.

Previous Writers in Residence

  • Pete Norman (2015)
  • Carlos Reyes Manzo (2014)

Richard Clarke

Ben Pimlott