Thesis Database

We have developed the following database of research theses on bullying from all academic institutions in the UK and Ireland. The aim of this database is to assist those who are interested in the field of bullying and want to see what research has already been done. We have attempted to ensure that we have included all relevant theses here; but if there is an omission please let us know by emailing

The database is here for information purposes. Those who want access to the texts of the theses need to contact the author, the relevant institution, or both.

Workplace Bullying in Primary Schools: Teachers’ Experience of Workplace Bullying: An organisational response perspective
Fitzpatrick, Kathleen
University of Limerick

The aim of this doctoral research is to contribute to the growing body of knowledge concerning workplace bullying by considering the help-seeking experiences of targets of bullying and organisational responses to their complaints. A phenomenological research design was adopted. Twenty-two Irish primary school teachers (7 male, 15 female) self-selected for interview. Data were analysed utilising an Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis framework.

All those interviewed had made complaints in accordance with the nationally agreed procedures stipulated to address workplace bullying in their schools. Redress procedures comprises several stages. All had engaged in stage one and two of the official complaints procedures; and all had availed of counselling, with most engaging with the recommended employee assistance service (formerly known as ‘Care Call’ now Medmark). Some participants had ceased engagement at stage 2, while other participants who had proceeded to stage three, ceased engagement at this juncture. Further participants proceeded to stage 4, of whom two are currently proscribed from returning to their posts due to ongoing disputes based upon retaliation for complaints, which comprised challenges to their fitness to work.

It is significant that no participant expressed satisfaction with the outcome of exercising agency and engaging with redress procedures. In fact, complaints procedures served as technologies of power for bullies who launched counterattacks. This doctoral study traced the pre-action, action, response, and overall consequences for the teacher as the target of workplace bullying describing targets’ resistance within the context of complex social interactions and considered possible supportive, preventative, and resolution strategies.

The resultant approach has wide-ranging implications for the present pernicious practices, and it identified a number of proposals for professional practice and modifications in the way in which workplace bullying may be countered and contained. This thesis contributes to discourses of agency in workplace bullying and challenges both researchers and policymakers to fully elucidate the various issues surrounding pathways to redress for bullying. In addition through its emphasis on the power dynamics which characterize redress it extends the limited available literature in the substantive area about the ineffectiveness of complaints procedures.

Moreover, despite the research limitation respecting the modest scale of the study involving self-selecting teachers, the richness of the data elicited underscores the problematic and contingent assumptions underpinning anti-bullying policies and procedures which purportedly address workplace bullying within small organisations.

An Garda Síochána: Culture, challenges, and change
Marsh, Courtney Nicole
Trinity College Dublin

An Garda Síochána: Culture, challenges, and change is an exploration and understanding of the organisational culture of An Garda Síochána Ireland’s National Policing Organisation. While the Gardaí or officers are often in the news media, there has been very little academic research on who and what this organisation is. On an abstract level, organisational culture provides the framework of the basic rules necessary to function, or survive, in an organisation. Police organisational culture provides an identity to officers that performs this same function. On a more specific scale, internationally, police culture has been understood to consist of masculinity, discrimination, exclusion, suspicion, isolation, solidarity/loyalty, moral and political conservatism, pragmatism, cynicism, aggression, negative views of supervision, selective enforcement of the law, and a prioritisation of the crime fighter role over service-oriented role. However, this understanding has been gathered from countries with very different policing organisations to Ireland. While the international research in police organisational culture is quite vast, there is relatively little to fill this area in Ireland, particularly when you exclude historical accounts of Irish policing and Northern Ireland. Of those studies that have been identified, very few specifically look at the organisation’s culture. Further to this, many of those studies are limited in numerical and geographic scope. While the relatively narrow field has limited a grounding for the findings of this study, they do provide a starting point for identifying what gap needs to be filled, namely an expansive study on the organisation s culture that is not confined to a small number of Gardaí or one geographic region. This considered, the gap identified in the Irish literature is one facet of this research. Naturally if there if the research in this area is underdeveloped in Ireland, then there is also a missing piece of where Ireland situates itself in the international policing literature. The Garda are a unique policing organisation, as such, this type of police culture has not been studied extensively internationally. One of the aims of this research is to understand where Ireland positions itself in the wider world of police organisational culture literature. However, in order for this to be done, and the primary aim of this research, you first need to gain a deeper understanding of what the culture of the Garda is and how this impacts relations within the organisation as well as their relationship with the communities in which they work. While the area of police organisational culture can be quite abstract, some of the more specific aspects of the culture this research aims to understand are in organisational relationships, accountability, and managing change. Though the aims listed thus far are wholly substantive, there is also remit for connecting these findings to a theoretical basis in social learning, social identity, and rotten apple theories to further understand how the culture of the Garda is transmitted throughout the organisation and over time. While this research fills a theoretical and empirical gap, there is also a methodological innovation in how the data was obtained and analysed. Certainly underutilised in Ireland, document analysis in the area of police organisational culture is also underutilised internationally. The data used in this research was obtained from eight documents, consisting of several thousands of pages of text, and spanning a 30-year period. The data from the documents was thematically analysed and a story was constructed based on the data to provide a deeper understanding of what the Garda culture is. While the documents of course contained the data necessary to provide an understanding of Garda culture, perhaps one of the more advantageous contributions of this methodology is the extended observation period provided that allowed for an analysis of the Garda culture over time, something not typically possible in other data collection methods due to their point in time collection nature. This research has contributed many key findings to the understanding of Garda culture. The first approach was to look at the organisation s culture from a top down level and what the relationship between the organisation and its members is. The findings in this area included what type of policing organisation the Garda is and what resources the organisation provides to its members (these resources included both physical resources as well as services provided). From this discussion stemmed a reconceptualization of the traditional types of policing organisations (i.e., militaristic and community/service oriented) as the Garda does not wholly fit in to either. Beyond this, the resources were examined in relation to making do with what little they are given despite increased demand for their services as well as how Gardaí are then left to cope with the added burdens. In particular reference to mental health provisions, how the organisation facilitated, or rather did not, practical and beneficial mental health services was looked at. Further to this organisational relationship from a top down perspective was an understanding of both internal and external organisational relationships and how these are influenced by the training Gardaí receive. These included how the Gardaí interact with each other on an individual level, encompassed within this is the idea that silence is necessary for survival in the organisation, as well as the Gardaí’s relationship with and to the communities they work in. In terms of training, as well as in conjunction with the idea of socialisation and Social Learning Theory embedding these characteristics into the organisation s culture and its members, it was found that the Gardaí are separated from the community from the outset of their training. This strengthened the earlier proposed idea that the Garda do not truly fit into a community oriented policing style. Internally, the relationships among Gardaí were examined both in relation to how they reacted to external and internal threats and it was concluded that the Gardaí overwhelmingly value self-preservation over loyalty. Chapter seven looked closer at accountability and blame within the organisation and how the lack of accountability on a wide scale coupled with the ever present blame culture impacts on Gardaí behaviour and actions. Though some of the examples given were seemingly indicative of individual level actions, it was argued that, stemming from Rotten Apple Theory, these behaviours are manifestations of organisational level behaviours that have been observed and learned by individual members and acted out based on this observation. In essence, even when behaviour was observed at an individual level, it was still reflective of organisational culture as rotten apples do not form in isolation but rather stem from rotten orchards. The final chapter brought the findings together with an added theoretical lens and the previous Irish and international literature to more fully understand where the Garda, and Ireland, fit into a larger scope of police organisational culture. It was reflected that while Ireland has always been considered quite different to many other international policing organisations, the more recent literature, particularly from the UK, seems to be more in line with some of the Irish characteristics found in the Garda culture. However, what this means for police culture, as a whole, has still not been fully explored.


Comparison of Job Satisfaction between Irish-born and Immigrant Employees in Non-Supervisory Positions in Dublin’s Pubs, Bars and Restaurants
Hadzikadunic, Dino
National College of Ireland

In the last few decades, the immigration of the workforce to more developed countries has noted a significant increase. That trend did not avoid Ireland as well. The increased levels of immigration to Ireland has followed the strong economic growth in the 1990s. In 2019, there were 622,700 non-Irish national residents in Ireland accounting for 12.7% of the total population with many of them starting their employment in Ireland through jobs in hospitality. In light of these numbers, it is relevant to examine immigrant’s job satisfaction within the industry. There have been numerous studies on job satisfaction of immigrants, as well as on the overall workforce in the hospitality sector. However, the literature did not compare job satisfaction levels between host nationals and immigrants employed in nonsupervisory positions in pub, bars and restaurants.

The aim of this research was to examine whether differences in job satisfaction between Irish-born and immigrant employees existed in positions which are already recognised for low levels of job satisfaction and to define the categories which made up the biggest difference between the two groups of employees.

A quantitative approach was used for this research with 78 questionnaires completed in full. In the survey, the author has used the well-established Minnesota Satisfaction Questionnaire which is known for its reliability. The sample was taken by the convenience sampling method. The gathered information was analysed by using IBM SPSS 26 software.

The research has found that immigrant’s job satisfaction is significantly lower compared to their Irish-born employees. The biggest difference between the two groups is shown in the categories of co-workers, responsibility, and supervision−human relations.

The findings will help to fill the above-mentioned gap in existing research and can be used by hospitality managers in order to recognise and reduce the gap in job satisfaction between their immigrant and Irish-born employees.

Exploring young people’s digital sexual cultures through creative, visual and arts-based methods
Marston, Kate
Cardiff University

This thesis explores how digital technologies such as social media, smart devices and gaming platforms are shaping young people’s sexual cultures. While the majority of research on young people’s digital sexual cultures has maintained a narrow focus on risk and harm, and limited what digital practices are considered relevant and for whom, this thesis contributes to a growing body of scholarship that seeks to support children and young people to navigate the complexities of an ever-changing digital sexual age. I worked with a socio-economically and culturally diverse sample of twenty-five young people aged 11 – 18 years from England and Wales. Rather than focusing on a pre-defined set of digital practices, I set out to foster a creative, curious and open-ended approach that allowed participants to identify which digital practices mattered to them. Over a period of fifteen-months, I employed a range of creative, visual and arts-based methods in group and individual interviews to explore a flexible set of core issues including digital worlds, relationships, networked body cultures and media discourses. Taking inspiration from feminist posthuman and new materialist concepts of ‘assemblage’, ‘affect’, ‘phallogocentricism’ and ‘feminist figurations’, I trace normative articulations of gender and sexuality as well as activate different ways of seeing and relating to young people’s digital sexual cultures. My data highlights the enduring force of heteronormative and phallogocentric power relations in young people’s digital sexual cultures through the publicisation of intimate relations online, social media’s visual culture of bodily display and gendered harassment online. However, it also maps ruptures and feminist figurations that displace vision away from the heteronormative and phallogocentric mode. I illustrate how young people’s digital sexual cultures can be the site of unexpected and unpredictable relations that move beyond normative notions of (hetero)sexuality and towards possibilities for re-imagined sexualities that exceed heteronormative and phallogocentric norms.

Men who report difficulties in adult relationships and the links they make to their boarding school experiences: A thematic analysis
Harris, Craig
University of Leicester

Systematic Literature Review: Twenty-six articles investigating the psychological experiences of boarding students were identified and subjected to a systematic analysis. Some studies indicated that boarders experience higher levels of psychological distress (especially soon after boarding transition), experience greater incidences of bullying victimisation, engage in more bullying perpetration, and may be at a higher risk of presenting with eating disorder psychopathology. However, other results reported general parity between wellbeing outcomes for boarders and non-boarders, or modest benefits for boarders measures of wellbeing and personality characteristics. Analysis highlighted the lack of research conducted in UK boarding schools, and the need for further research with extended follow-ups. Limitations of the literature and recommendations for professional practice and future research are discussed. Research Paper: Thematic analysis was used to explore the experiences of male ex-boarders who had identified experiences of difficulties in relationships. Three superordinate themes were presented: Disempowerment depicted how participants felt powerless or controlled by others, and the impact this had in later relationships; Suppressing aspects of self and personality related to how participants described hiding emotions or parts of their personality to ‘get by’, and how these strategies presented in adulthood; and A process of recovery was concerned with how participants sought ways to ‘recover’ from their experiences. Findings were discussed in relation to existing theory and literature and highlighted the importance for educational and care institutions to recognise ideological powers, as well as the use of therapeutic interventions that are underpinned by theories of attachment.

Colbeck High School: A figurational analysis of relationships, identities and behavioural norms in male Physical Education
Mierzwinski, Mark Francis
University of Leeds

Physical Education (PE) is the most sex-differentiated and gender stereotyped subject in the school curriculum in England. The long tradition of gendered PE is not reflected in a more contemporary gender-neutral PE curriculum. This disparity is part of a broader theory-practice gap centred on differences between how PE should be and how PE is. Therefore, in this thesis, relationships, identities and behavioural norms in Male PE (MPE) are examined as they are, and not how they should be. A figurational sociological approach is adopted to examine gendered social processes, power relations and masculine embodiment within MPE. The data discussed in the thesis is from a six-month ethnography in Colbeck High School, a religious-affiliated mixed-sex secondary school within the North-East of England. Key findings identified how both enabling and constraining social processes within MPE were configured and subsequently internalised by boys along fairly binary gendered lines. Whilst MPE teachers contributed to this process through using gender slurs, boys’ gendered self-restraints were primarily driven by their desire to be part of, and maintain an affiliation with, the dominant ‘We’ group amongst their peers. In constantly negotiating their identities with the prevailing ‘We’- identity, boys appeared to exercise a more flexible and reflexive self-control when restraining or expressing their emotions according to often gendered social circumstances. This conscious behaviour was evident in boys’ frequent engagement in banter, a behavioural norm which carried much social significance within MPE. Banter was found to be premised on necessary levels of mutual identification and mutual respect, and to differentiate it from inappropriate comments or verbal bullying, boys had to be socially and emotionally aware of their, and other people’s, feelings and intentions. Given this increasingly expected heightened levels of social awareness and emotional sophistication, a case is made to reconfigure academic conceptions of banter from being an immature behaviour to banter as being a sophisticated form of communication. These findings contrast with previous research that tends to overly focus on boys’ physical behaviours as influential in their power relations with peers and key markers of their gender identity by illustrating the increasing importance of verbal exchanges as symbolic forms of power. Furthermore, through identifying the levels of consciousness present in boys’ behaviour and linking this to their exhibiting of a third nature psyche, critiques of attempts to attach boys’ emotional expressions to their innate biological sex or suggestions that boys’ aggression signifies regressions to instinctive impulses are provided. Placing these key findings within broader civilizing processes it seems that long-term shifts from physical to more verbally centred power relations has impacted young people at relational, identity and behavioural levels. There appears to be a heightened need for young people to engage in sophisticated forms of communications and emotional self-restraint before entering adult social worlds, and the MPE figuration provides an illustrative example of this.

Exploring student victimisation and wellbeing in the UK higher education context
Harrison, Emma Dawn
Keele University

Research into student bullying in Higher Education (HE) has been limited and most is based on childhood bullying research. Bullying in HE could disrupt student mental health and wellbeing at university – a topic that has recently gained traction. Additionally, marginalised student groups may be more at risk (e.g., LGB+). Focus groups were used to explore students’ conceptualisations of bullying and identify differences between childhood and emerging adulthood (EA) bullying behaviour. Themes identified were power imbalances; tactics of HE bullying; bullying for personal or social gain, and; justifications and minimisations for not intervening (bystander intervention). Examples of bullying behaviour from this first study supplemented the childhood and adult bullying literature to create a new HE bullying scale. The scale was tested on two samples to identify the factor structure (N = 243, N =304). The third survey study (N = 441) adopted a correlational design using the developed scale alongside measures of wellbeing, childhood victimisation, and potential mediator variables, such as university belongingness, social connectedness, and Internal Working Models (IWMs). Group differences were found on victimisation, IWMs, social connectedness, and university belonging, especially for SES and sexual orientation, evidencing the disadvantages that minority groups may suffer within HE. Regression-based path-analyses found that IWMs, university bullying, social connectedness, and university belonging mediated the links between childhood victimisation and current wellbeing. Finally, UK university anti-bullying policies were examined. Policy length and quality varied between universities and a review of content is recommended based on the earlier study findings. This research has produced a new university bullying scale and has also explored mechanisms through which childhood victimisation may have negative effects on current HE student wellbeing. The importance of self- and other- beliefs as well as the social context (e.g. belonging) is stressed.

An Exploration of the Educational Experiences of Dyslexic School-Aged Students
Morgan, Linsey
Lancaster University

This research aims to develop knowledge of dyslexia from the subjective experiences of dyslexic students currently attending mainstream, state schooling in England. As the importance of identifying dyslexia early within a student’s schooling, to prevent educational failure, is generally agreed (Rose 2009) research within the field of dyslexia remains predominantly concerned with neurological and cognitive studies of causation, identification, and remediation. Consequently, to date, there is limited research designed to gain an understanding of dyslexia through the lived experiences of dyslexic individuals. The current research draws upon twenty-one school-aged students and explores their lived experience of being identified and labelled as dyslexic and the effects of dyslexic difficulties within their schooling. The research was guided by the interactional approach to disability (Shakespeare 2014). The research was guided throughout by a qualitative approach to data collection. The data was derived using a digital communication aid entitled ‘Talking Mats’ and follow-up semi-structured interviews. The dyslexic students who participated in this research came from one mainstream state secondary school and three mainstream state primary schools in England. The data collected was analysed using thematic analysis and three overarching themes emerged. These were: Diagnosis, dyslexic students’ experiences of the process of being identified and labelled as dyslexic, Dyslexia, the difficulties experienced by dyslexic students in the classroom and Discrimination, dyslexic students’ experiences of discrimination and the effects within schooling. The students’ experiences suggest that regardless of the age of being identified and labelled as dyslexic, the experience of the assessment process remained a challenging experience, that did not aid their understanding of dyslexia. Despite their diagnosis, the students continued to experience a range of difficulties predominantly with reading, spelling, and handwriting. Although the students requested the use of reasonable adjustments to lessen their difficulties this was often denied. This research highlighted a multitude of barriers these dyslexic students experienced within school, for example, discrimination, humiliation, and punishments.

Justice and fairness in the workplace: a disciplinary case analysis in the UK public sector
Harvie, Wayne G.
Nottingham Trent University

This thesis investigates justice and fairness in the UK public sector when formal disciplinary procedures are invoked. The golden thread of justice and fairness in the workplace addresses the following questions:-
1. What types and scale of workplace disciplinary transgressions exhibit in the UK public sector, and are demographics relevant?
2. How the Host employer processes disciplinary cases and what are the experiences at this and other bodies of the parties involved, employees, trade unions, managers, HR, and politicians, and what improvements could be made?
The initial phase comprised a five year longitudinal study of a public sector employer’s disciplinary records, and compared employee demographics with workforce characteristics of which they formed a part. It is unique in being purely case-based, and unlike much research does not conflate grievance and disciplinary cases. Employee demographics of age, gender, tenure and absence show statistically significant linkages to a propensity to commit serious breaches of contract resulting in a formal disciplinary investigation. In the case of gender, evidence strongly points to it being generalizable.

The concluding qualitative phase found isolated examples of ‘good’ practice, but also serious inconsistencies and lapses by employers. Three key concepts emerged. Structural Differentiation where disciplinary criteria were being applied differently across the same employer; Hierarchical Differentiation where senior management interpreted and applied policies in favour of themselves; and Boundary Conditions where gatekeeping decisions are made whether to invoke formal procedures. These Boundary Condition failures saw unimaginable harm being meted out to victims of child sexual abuse, with innumerable employee, service and society implications.

This work tasks Human Resource professionals to be more proactive in constructively using the wealth of data metrics at their disposal, so as to avoid unnecessary investigations, and challenges them along with management to remove impediments to achieving equitable justice and fairness in the workplace.

An Investigation into the Effects of Work Stress on Job Satisfaction amongst Employees Working in Marketing Field of Mumbai, India
Nair, Ravirai Radhakrishnan
National College of Ireland

The purpose of this research is to recognize and analyse the relationship between work stress and job satisfaction. The research was conducted using a survey questionnaire which was sent to 118 participants who were working across 14 different organizations. The response received was uploaded into SPSS for analysis. The scale of reliability was conducted and the findings were reflected in chapter 4 of this document.

The major cause for work stress was identified as workload and poor interpersonal relationships, whereas the major cause for job satisfaction was identified as pay and career prospects, which contributed as a stability factor to the employee. The final objective of the study was to identify the relationship between work stress and job satisfaction, and it was concluded that they have a negative relationship. This research has supported previous studies in the similar arena and have covered the aspect of work stress and job satisfaction in marketing industry of Mumbai, India.

Risk communication framework for parental control in the digital world
Alotaibi, Moneerah N.
University of Plymouth

The Internet is growing rapidly and is becoming an essential part of children’s lives. Internet use has many benefits for learning, participation, creativity, entertainment and communication. Along with such benefits, however, Internet use might expose children to a wide range of online risks. Some of those risks, such as bullying, exposure to pornography, and sexual exploitation, are known in the offline world but there are also new ones, such as the invasion of personal data and privacy, geolocation tracking, sexual messaging and harassment.

Unfortunately, the existing mechanisms for protecting children online are ineffective. The parental controls currently available focus on monitoring and restrictive functions to reduce potential online risks, which might not satisfy the expectations of young people who want unrestricted freedom to use the Internet. Parental controls also demonstrate shortcomings in increasing parents’ awareness of the risks that their children may encounter. Parents not only need to be aware of their children’s online activities, but also to understand and mitigate the potential risks associated with their children’s online activities. Young people might engage in online behaviours that expose them to risk, although not all risk leads to harm. Therefore, parental controls should improve parents’ awareness of the potential security risks related to their children’s online activities, so that they can support their children’s use of the Internet, enhance their opportunities and help them develop the coping skills to deal with potential risk.

The present research suggests applying a risk communication mechanism to parental controls to raise the security awareness for parents and children in order to help them make safe decisions and reduce online risks. Firstly, this research proposes a risk assessment model that assess the risk levels of children’s online activities in order to warn parents and children about them in an individualised, timely, and continuous way. The proposed system also provides appropriate protection responses to avoid those risks. Secondly, a prototype system has been designed and developed to simulate the proposed system and provide a clear image of its functionalities and how it works. After implementing the prototype system, it was important to have parents evaluate its usability and usefulness. The participants were able to use the system and were satisfied in terms of its overall appearance and the functions provided. They agreed and prefer to use the system in real life. It can also be stated that the overall feedback from the participants regarding the proposed system was very encouraging and positive.

The bullying of autistic children: A review of anti-bullying interventions, and a feasibility study examining the relationship between bullying victimisation and psychosis-like experiences
Hastings, Kimberly N.
University of Sheffield

Bullying of autistic children by their peers is prevalent. This is a significant concern, given research linking childhood bullying with adverse mental health outcomes, in both autistic and neurotypical groups.

The first section of this thesis is a scoping review, which aimed to establish what interventions have been developed to reduce the bullying of autistic children. The second section reports an investigation of the feasibility of examining the relationship between bullying victimisation and psychosis-like experiences (PLEs) in autistic children. Following a systematic literature search 10 studies were identified for inclusion in the scoping review. Broadly, interventions focussed either upon skills-development for autistic children, or the promotion of contact between autistic children and neurotypical peers. There was heterogeneity in the research designs used and outcome measures employed.

Overall, the evidence base is in its infancy and there is a need to develop and evaluate multicomponent interventions involving autistic children, neurotypical peers, staff and schools. A quantitative cross-sectional design was used to investigate the feasibility of testing the relationship between bullying victimisation and PLEs in autistic children, and to test the preliminary hypothesis of association between these variables. Parents completed a battery of online questionnaires about their children (N=53). Hierarchical multiple regression was used to test the relationship between the variables of interest, while controlling for: age, sex, family history of psychosis and internalising difficulties.

It was found that there is a lack of suitable questionnaires for measuring PLEs in autistic children, and that recruiting a large sample via a clinical service may not be feasible. Preliminary hypothesis testing failed to establish a statistically significant relationship between bullying victimisation and PLEs in autistic children. However, this should not preclude future work in this area.

Does Emotional Intelligence influence Work Related Stress among Irish Civil Servants
Nerney, Eilish
National College of Ireland

The author’s objective was to establish if Emotional Intelligence (EI) influences work related stress among Irish Civil Servants. EI is the ability to perceive, understand and regulate one’s own feelings and emotions along with those of others essential for daily functioning. Work related stress is the perceived inability to cope due to an imbalance between demands and resources, leading to fatigue, irritability and poor communication which can challenge interpersonal and intrapersonal functioning. Stress management through EI helps workers reappraise workplace demands helping them cope. Schutte et al. (1998) Assessing Emotions Scale (AES) was employed to measure EI within the Irish Civil Service. A customised self-reported questionnaire obtained participants socio-demographic information pertaining to gender and age. An adapted Occupational stress Index (OSI) developed by Srivastava and Singh (1981) was used to measure perceived occupational stress levels among Irish Civil Servants, determining whether EI is a meditating factor of work-related stress. It is suggested that occupational stress scores reflect levels of EI influenced by one’s ability to adapt and cope through the appraisal, regulation, management and utilisation of emotions rather than what a job entails. Contrary to empirical research the inferences drawn indicated that the null hypotheses were accepted. H01: Global EI does not correlate with perceived occupational stress among Irish Civil Servants. H02: Global EI does not predict perceived occupational stress when accounting for age and gender. Further exploration was done using the three components of occupational stress: role ambiguity, role overload and role conflict. Age was the only variable factor which significantly contributed to role ambiguity, rejecting H02. It is suggested that Human Resource Management evaluate the organisational role structure to mitigate any risk of occupational stress. Employees could develop self-focused EI as it is believed to have positive effects on psychological and physiological occupational well-being.

Employee well-being and Organisational Growth
Bharti, Sumit Kumar
National College of Ireland

The research finds the connection between employee well-being in an organisation with organisational growth and well-being. It is seen that organisational well-being or growth rate will depend positively on the well-being of the employees since employees are the human resource of the organisation that defines the functional capabilities of an organisation. Poor work condition of organisations like stress and work pressure deteriorates the well-being of the employees, and they become ill, both physically and mentally. The illness of the employees reduces the productivity level of the organisations, which in turn diminishes the organisation’s well-being and growth.

The research introduces the topic by explaining the background of it, and then in the next section, the aims of the research are stated. The following sections cover the rationale for performing the research, the relevance of the research. The introduction part ends with the research questions. The next chapter of this dissertation is the literature review which is divided into four parts and discussed in brief for the support of the study. Then in the third & fourth chapters, research problems are discussed relating to the research objective.

The fifth chapter is the methodology part, where the sections of performing research are discussed. The first section introduces the methodology then the particular research philosophies, approach and strategies are considered for this research. The analysis was done with the help of primary data gathering and using graphical representation to express the data. The data are gathered by surveying 100 respondents in which those 100 respondents are employees of different large multinational corporations or organisations in India. The respondents are sent the questionnaire form through email, and the data will be represented with pie charts. The graphical representation that is used in the study is the Pie chart. The final chapter is a conclusion of this study along with the recommendation, future aspects and suggestions.

Effective Online Safety Awareness for Young People in Less Developed Countries
Herkanaidu, Kona Ramesswar Kona
University of Plymouth

In less developed countries (LDCs) there is a research deficit on the positive and negative aspects of their respective emerging digital cultures. Education programmes that seek to raise awareness of online safety, needs to be based on evidence and not simply transposed from other countries as the issues involved may be very different. Thailand, in particular, has very little data that can be used to create meaningful educational material. This was determined after a thorough literature review which found that most of the research has been carried out in the advanced economies of North America, Europe and Australasia. By contrast in South East Asia very little research had been carried out. This research proposes an integrative security awareness education framework for emerging digital cultures. It was constructed from the ground up so that it would be evidence led. In the first phase, a survey of the online behaviour and attitudes of young people in Thai schools was undertaken. Between November 2016 and June 2018, 352 students aged between 12 and 18 completed a comprehensive online questionnaire. In addition, 25 students were interviewed and asked to describe their online experiences both good and bad.

From the survey it was found that 69% of students had been upset by an online interaction with 55% experiencing some form of cyber-bullying. They were also exposed to potentially harmful content. At least a third or more had seen posts or discussions on; committing suicide, self-harm, being very thin, sexual images and hate messages against individuals and groups. In terms of mediation the interviews revealed a slightly different picture than the one painted in the survey. In the latter, young people suggested that they did sometimes talk to their parents and teachers about upsetting experiences. In the interviews most said that they did not tell their parents or teachers about negative online interactions. This was backed up during the workshops with most reasoning that what they were going through was not important enough to tell a parent or teacher or that they might be the ones that get blamed. They would either stay silent or tell a close friend.

A series of online safety workshops were carried out, structured around the theme of cyber-bullying, as that was the standout issue from the surveys and interviews. An action-research approach was taken to determine what kind of activities would be best to engage Thai students. Activities that were based around active learning strategies like gamification (i.e., using elements of game design) and involving cooperation or competition proved the most successful. Activities where students had to present something or be involved in classroom discussions did not fare too well.

The resulting education framework from the field research consists of themes and topics that are relevant to LDCs as well as the type of activities that works best. A novel component, ‘Cultural Mask’ was added to the framework. This looks at the influence of a country’s culture and its impact on education. In Thailand this includes the Sufficiency Economy Philosophy (SEP). In the education sector, SEP schools should promote student centric learning with creativity, critical thinking and problem solving amongst other goals. Knowledge they learn should lead to the betterment of their school and community. Therefore, the education framework can be adapted to reflect the SEP goals. In other LDCs by working through the education framework, awareness programmes can be developed that will be effective and culturally relevant.

A Nietzschean Analysis of Cybercrime and Deviance
Noble, Wayne
University of Central Lancashire

The intention of this thesis is to examine various types of online deviance, such as ‘trolling’ and other forms of cyber bullying with special attention paid to the deviance which occurs on social networking sites and peer-2-peer file sharing websites.

The central claim of this thesis is that deviant behaviour can be influenced (encouraged, magnified) by ‘ressentiment’, which can reside within the individual. This ‘ressentiment’ forms part of a complex array of situational factors called ‘Flexible Causal Prediction’, whereby individuals may experience a particularly strong influence on behaviour but are not predetermined to act in certain ways. In this thesis the author uses Nietzsche’s philosophical notions of ‘Nihilism’, ‘Slave Morality’, ‘ressentiment’, ‘Will to Power’ and the ‘Übermensch’ to build an existential picture of deviant behaviour.

The author also draws upon the criminological/sociological notions of ‘Drift’, ‘Master Status’ and the ‘Techniques of Neutralisation’ (Sykes and Matza 1957) to introduce the new concepts of ‘Flexible Causal Prediction’ (previously referred to as ‘Causal Probability’); and the idea of ‘Situational Influences’. This undertaking is done with the intention of building upon the Meta-theoretical work of Owen (2007 – 2015), which seeks to build bridges between the social and physical sciences. The theory of ‘Flexible Causal Prediction’ is also applied to the deviant activities of internet trolling and anti-social behaviours to demonstrate the influences on behaviour.

Nietzsche’s philosophical notion of ‘Slave Morality’ and ‘ressentiment’ will also be extended when looking at some radical social justice movements, such as ‘AntiFa’, ‘Black Lives Matter’ and the ‘#MeToo’ movement to demonstrate the role that ‘ressentiment’ may play in behavioural choices. To assist this analysis Saul Alinksy’s 1971 book ‘Rules for Radicals’ will be referenced to demonstrate how the rules are based on a collectivist ‘herd’ mentality of slave ‘ressentiment’ and how these rules have themselves lead directly to deviant behaviour, online and offline and how a politically correct ideology could be responsible for encouraging such behaviours.

Using hybrid deep learning and word embedding based approach for advance cyberbullying detection
Bhatt, Jigar
National College of Ireland

The ever-increasing use of social media in the internet space have induced a number of problems like cyberbullying and cyberaggression over the internet. Researchers have made a commendable progress on the ongoing fight against cyberbullying but a lot of unresolved issues still persist that primarily motivates the purpose of the research. The paper aims to integrate recent advances in the field of word embedding like fastText, ELMo and stacked flair embeddings combined with a host of robust deep learning techniques to further the efficiency of detection over the state-of-art. Two distinct datasets Formspring and Wikipedia were requested and processed for the purpose of the research. A number of different combinations of word embedding with deep learning methods were tested and compared with CNN with ELMo embedding delivering the most promising results with an F1 score of 0.82 on both datasets. On the other hand, CNN with fastText obtained F1 score of 0.82 on Formspring and 0.64 on Wikipedia dataset but was computationally faster than the counterparts. Moreover, transfer learning was performed using the models to test and prove the robustness and efficacy of the models. The system performed considerably well with superior scores in precision, recall and F1 over the state-of-the-art across all the test cases performed.

My Feed Does Not Define Me: The Role of Social Networking Site Usage in Adolescent Self-Concept
Hogan, Róisín
Mary Immaculate College

Introduction: Adolescence is a critical period of self-concept development. However, with the prevalence of social networking site use amongst this age group, this development is now occurring in a completely different context when compared to previous generations. Aims: This study aimed to investigate 1) the intensity of adolescent social networking site use, 2) discrepancies between adolescent and parent estimations of their social networking site intensity and their actual social networking site usage, 3) the relationship between social networking site usage and adolescent self-concept and 4) whether this relationship is mediated by adolescents’ social comparison tendencies.

Methods: A cross-sectional sample of adolescents (N = 86, Mage = 16.8) and their parents completed a web-based questionnaire composed of reliable and validated measures including the Social Networking Intensity Scale and the Self-Perception Profile for Adolescents. Participants also recorded their social networking site usage for one week using a recording application installed on their device.

Results: Data analyses included descriptive statistics, a Hierarchical Multiple Regression and a One-Way Analysis of Variance. Results showed that participants spent an average of 1 hour and 35 minutes on social networking sites per day. The most popular sites amongst participants were Instagram, Snapchat and WhatsApp and the most common uses included talking with friends and family, finding entertaining content and feeling involved with what is going on with others. A significant difference was found between self and parent-reported social networking site usage and actual social networking site usage. Time spent on social networking sites or social networking site intensity did not predict adolescents’ general self-concept.

Discussion: The results of this study did not provide evidence as to an association between social networking site intensity and adolescent self-concept. Results, implications and limitations are discussed in relation to previous literature and theory, educational psychology practice and policy.

Who is More Stressed? An investigation into the effect that stress has on blue-collar workers versus white-collar workers
O'Reilly, Seán
National College of Ireland

This research hones in on the differing stress levels between blue and white-collar employees. The research looked at the particular reasons for developing stress in the workplace of blue and white-collar workers, as the author found an opening for such research. Previous research states that it is the white-collar industry that has to endure the higher levels of stress, however further research states that blue-collar workers have to put up with similar and even more stress than those in the white-collar industry. Therefore this study will attempt to explore the different reasons for stress in both industries and see which sector has to deal with the most stress. The individuals who participated in this quantitative study participated in an online survey, which was comprised of 10 demographic questions, and a 35-question questionnaire developed by the Health Service Executive (HSE) put together to calculate participants stress level. The results showed that the only significant result displayed a negative correlation between work being brought home and stress. All the other correlations were not statistically significant.

Legality, Social Media and the Criminal Law
Bliss, Laura
Edge Hill University

Social media has changed how society communicates, transformed how individuals access the latest headline news and has altered many aspects of everyday life. It has, in turn changed the way in which individuals can target other members of society. In recent years, society has seen the likes of Facebook and Twitter used to distribute hate speech, accommodate revenge pornography and abuse others online. Consequently, the Government and the criminal justice system are being put under increasing pressure to tackle online abuse. Many of the current legal provisions contained in the law of England and Wales were enacted before the creation of social media. Yet these Acts are used to prosecute those who conduct abusive behaviour online. Issues are therefore arising with the adaptation of Acts of Parliament never intended to cover a digital age.

This thesis will critically examine several Acts of Parliament which have been used to control unlawful behaviour on social media sites, including, though not limited to, the Public Order Act 1986, the Malicious Communications Act 1988, and the Protection from Harassment Act 1997. It will be argued that the current use of these Acts breaches the fundamental principle of legality in the criminal law, before turning to examine freedom of speech and privacy online. Legality, at its very basic means the law needs to be accessible and clear to maintain the rule of law.

The final parts of this thesis will examine how other countries and institutions govern online behaviour. In the conclusive chapters, recommendations will be put forward as to how the legal system and society can better protect those who are abused online, including a draft social media Bill and a proposed universal code of conduct.