Holly Smith

Civic Scholar

Holly is a PhD student at University College London, where her thesis looks at community action. She has a focus on high-rise estates in Britain from 1967 to 2015. An interest in social justice is at the heart of her research.

Islam Jalaita

Community Advisory Board

Islam brings 15 years’ experience, knowledge, understanding and strategic thinking, working with diverse communities to empower people to lead and nurture resilient communities.

Jack Layton

Senior Researcher

Jack is passionate about making our towns and cities better places to live. As part of the team at the Institute for Community Studies, he works to ensure people’s voices across the country are heard and their needs prioritised.

Judith Parry

Civic Scholar

Judith is studying the wellbeing impact of grassroots ‘community-led’ housing for her PhD. Her work is focused on green space and infrastructure.

Kevin Dixon

Community Advisory Board

The Chair of Healthwatch Torbay and the Torbay Patient Participation Group Network, Kevin has a particular interest in health, social care and community responses to poverty.

Louise McLaughlin-Borlace

Community Advisory Board

Louise is keen to represent peoples’ views from Co. Fermanagh and exchange skills and best practice, identifying projects that may help develop the community sector within Northern Ireland.

Nahed Ahmed

Civic Scholar

Nahed is doing her PhD in Female Entrepreneurship and social capital. She is a British council (HESPAL)-awarded researcher, and is based in York. She has worked for many years as a lecturer and tutor, and has held managerial positions at universities in Gaza.

Nahim Ahmed MBE

Community Advisory Board

Nahim serves the most vulnerable members of society through his work in the private, public and third sectors. His professional experiences in a range of sectors help create positive sustainable changes in areas affected by poverty.

Nisha Waller

Civic Scholar

A criminology PhD ESRC Scholar at the University of Oxford, Nisha’s research focuses on the application of complicity law with reference to serious youth violence and the criminalisation of young black men.

Ranjit Dhillon

Community Advisory Board

Chief Executive of a local community-based organisation, Ranjit has lived in the London borough of Richmond for 34 years and is a trustee of a local infrastructure support organisation.

Ryan McKay

Community Advisory Board

A youth worker and intergenerational practitioner with a background in community education, Ryan is based at the Citadel Youth Centre in Leith, Edinburgh, Scotland.

Samanthi Theminimulle

Senior Researcher

Samanthi is interested in participatory research methods, inclusion and accessibility. In addition to her role at the Institute for Community Studies, she is is a facilitator with Civic Square and Enrol Yourself, and a trustee for the community land trust, RUSS.


Community research

The Institute for Community Studies is powered by The Young Foundation, a not-for-profit tackling societal issues with a collaborative, multi-disciplinary approach.

Contact our team

Social innovation

Involving people from diverse sectors, The Young Foundation shapes game-changing initiatives.

Get in touch