Staff Profiles: James Garo Derounian

James Garo Derounian

Staff Profile: James Garo Derounian
Principal Lecturer, Applied Social Sciences

James Garo Derounian

James Garo Derounian

Principal Lecturer, Applied Social Sciences

Social Sciences

I specialise in research and teaching around community engagement, rural issues, and interactive approaches to teaching and learning.


I have undertaken consultancies for international (e.g. Romanian Historic Monuments' Commission), national (Carnegie UK Trust) and local (Oxfordshire Rural Community Council) organisations. I am particularly skilled at facilitating learning for part time, mature, distance learning students. I have published articles regularly for the Guardian newspaper, on higher education and localism.

I completed the 1st off-mainland Neighbourhood Plan [NP] examination for Bembridge, Isle of Wight. I also took a key role in producing a NP for my hometown of Winchcombe, Glos. These Neighbourhood Plans are created by local people for local people.

I am married to Linsey, who is a primary teacher in Cheltenham. We have 2 grown-up children - one is an artist, the other a lecturer. I have 38 years’ experience of working with (rural) communities across England – nationally, and as a project officer in Devon and Northumberland, on multi-agency regeneration partnerships. I thoroughly enjoy my teaching, and working with students to enable them to do their very best.


Award Title Institution
BSc (Hons) Rural Environment Studies London University
MPhil Town and Country Planning Newcastle-upon-Tyne


Fellow of the Higher Education Academy FHEA


National Teaching Fellow and University of Gloucestershire Teaching Fellow

Membership of professional bodies

Member of the Royal Town Planning Institute MTRTI,  Fellow of the Institute of Local Council Management FILCM

Teaching and research


I teach across undergraduate (Applied Social Sciences, Criminology and Sociology), and postgraduate (Criminology) courses. At level 5 (2nd year of an Honours Degree0 I co-ordinate Internship/ work opportunities across the School of Natural and Social Sciences.

I have over 25 years experience of lecturing; and deliver modules including: "Power in the Modern World: Who Really Makes the Decisions"; "Active Citizenship"; undergraduate and postgraduate dissertations; and "Crimes against Humanity".




My research focuses on community influence over decision-making; and active and authentic approaches to teaching and learning.


More publications from James Garo Derounian can be found in the Research Repository.

Completed Supervisions

External responsibilities

2018 - Utopias and Dystopias, invited panellist, exhibition launch of work by artist Benjamin Deakin, The Concept Space (April) 

2018 - Graduate contributions to undergraduate teaching, Festival of Ideas, University of Gloucestershire (June)

2015 - FOR REAL: Forming Resilience and Employability through Authentic Learning, Consultancy report for Higher Education Academy, York (with colleagues)

2015 - Handpicked for EU partnership project: A Europe of Diasporas, Armenian General Benevolent Union AGBU and Union of Jewish Students

2012 - Handpicked for EU consultancy: reviewing leadership in remote areas, Périgord

2012 - Led Centre for Education in the Built Environment (funded) teaching exchange with the University of the Highlands & Islands, around community engagement

2012 - External Examiner MSc Green Economy (Dist Learning) Bournemouth University

2012 - UK Association of National Parks, Engaging Local Communities conference, keynote speaker: Engaging communities – why bother? York (June)

2011 - Plenary speaker: National Teaching Fellows Reflection Seminar, Oxford Brookes

2009 - 12 Core member of HEA NTFS financed project: Learner Empowerment through Active Public-Student Engagement (LEAPSE)

2009 - Director-trustee of Cheltenham West End Partnership regeneration project

Subjects for media interviews

Communities and grassroots initiatives; real world approaches to teaching in higher education; rural social issues; crimes against humanity

We kindly ask that media contacts wishing to speak to this member of staff do so through the University press office:

Professional positions

Joint Communications Officer for the Association of National Teaching Fellows ANTF

External examining

I external examine for the BA Hons Neighbourhood Studies at the University of Bolton