Institute for Social Renewal

Mission & Values

Strategic Objectives

What does the Institute for Social Renewal aim to achieve?


In pursuit of Newcastle University's vision of a world class civic university, to contribute to the understanding and practice of social renewal in NE England, the UK and internationally. 


To show how a world class civic university can help people and societies thrive at times of rapid, transformational change.

Strategic Objectives

  1. NISR will lead public debates in the understanding and practice of social renewal
  2. NISR will champion the vision of a world class civic university (excellence with a purpose) and its successful realisation
  3. NISR will engage in high-quality research, scholarship, learning and teaching that informs policy and practice at all levels and across many societal challenges through knowledge production and exchange
  4. NISR will build relationships, and work on selected projects on a co-creation basis, with trusted partners to improve the practices and effectiveness of social renewal

To find out more, view our Priorities section. 

Diagram of the processes of Social Renewal. In these three areas: public sphere, prosperity and social justice, Social Renewal takes place. Feeding into these spheres are forces of change from without and within, and the result is thriving in the context of rapid change.
Processes of Social Renewal


Newcastle University is committed to fundamental values of: academic freedom; the pursuit of knowledge and understanding; a sound academic disciplinary base; a methodology based on reason and evidence; social responsibility; and transparency (Vision 2021: PDF). The Newcastle Institute for Social Renewal endorses this statement of values.

In its own work, the Newcastle Institute for Social Renewal will value:

  • Academic Freedom
  • Collegiality
  • Respect for, and tolerance of, diversity of views
  • Knowledge and understanding based on evidence
  • Debate as a formative process
  • Transparency in the positionality of the researcher
  • A concern for social justice, kindness, and social responsibility

How to make a change

What does Social Renewal mean in practice?

Newcastle University's alumni magazine, Arches, asked graduates, students and staff what 'Social Renewal' means to them. The response from Professor Nina Laurie is below. Professor Laurie's research in international development sees her working with Shakti Samuha, an organisation in Nepal comprising women who have been trafficked. Hear more about what Social Renewal means to our other graduates, students and staff.

Professor Nina Laurie