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The Rebel Researchers is a joint project with Oxford University, where young people from in and around Tower Hamlets are being trained as social researchers.
A group of 12 young women from in and around Tower Hamlets are working with Toynbee Hall and the University of Oxford's Department of Social Policy and Intervention, to undertake a peer-to-peer research project.
The final report, 'Are young people heard? Our thoughts about young people and politics', was launched in the Houses of Parliament.
The group call themselves the ‘Rebel Researchers’ – to highlight the difference between themselves and ‘traditional’ academics – and have chosen to look at the spaces and sites of youthful politics. Aware of their marginalised status as ethnic minority young women from a highly deprived borough, they are gathering theirs and their peers' thoughts and opinions about where they feel they have an opportunity to exercise power, speak and be heard. They are specifically trying to explore whether national, local, online or ‘personal’ politics is perceived as more or less inclusive, and what barriers might prevent young people like themselves from taking up opportunities within these potentially political spheres.
They are currently undertaking focus groups with their peers, and aim to follow up with an in-school survey based on the findings of their focus groups.