School of Social Sciences, Humanities & Law
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Dr Ben Lamb

Ben Lamb

About Ben Lamb

Dr. Ben Lamb's mission is improve social integration policy through his research into representations of marginalised communities within the media, wider culture, and the arts.

Ben joined Teesside’s Humanities Department in 2015. Previously, Ben has lectured in media theory at the University of East Anglia’s School of Arts, Media, and American Studies and the University of South Wales’ Faculty of Creative Industries. 

After earning a first class BA in English and Film at Hull University, Ben was awarded an AHRC scholarship to study for a Film Studies MA at Warwick University. Subsequently he was awarded a PhD scholarship on the AHRC funded ‘Spaces of Television’ project.  His doctoral thesis ‘The Construction of Fictional Spaces in British Television Drama and the Police Series of 1955-82’, examined the developing aesthetics of the studio-based British television drama. Focusing on the police series genre it examined how the studio production system was able to creatively intervene in sociological issues surrounding gender, class and crime.

Research interests and activities

Ben is forever devising studies that combine cultural theory with the social sciences to develop methodological frameworks that can impact policy.

As a cultural theorist who specialises in television studies his published research has examined modes of realism within different television production systems, genre theory, ideology, gender politics, feminism, and social class. 

Research projects & external funding

Ben is currently putting together a research project with the AHRC which aims to examine how past regional television disseminated the purpose of the welfare state and impacted local services throughout the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s. He will also be putting together screenings of past content in partnership with the North East Film Archive to try and impact social care delivery in the region.

PhD and research opportunities

Ben is always looking to supervise PhD projects on television history, television genre, and representations of class, gender, and crime. 

He is also keen to supervise students who are interested in combining social sciences with the arts. His current PhD student is writing a thesis entitled 'Transforming lives and place in Middlesbrough through creative activity at Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art'.

Ben is a founding member of Teesside’s Social Realism Seminar and also mentors PhD students in running the English Research Seminar.

External roles and professional activities

Ben helps run the Stockon Poverty Truth Commission that facilitates conversations between those living in poverty with local businesses, councilors, charities, and politicians. Having the experiences of those facing difficulty influence local policy decisions is designed to improve service delivery and foster even greater social inclusion and cohesion within the borough. 

External research collaborations

Ben is developing a documentary with Third Films on the history of feminist social realism in British film as co-scriptwriter.

Learning and teaching interests

Ben is a fellow of the Higher Education Academy and has been teaching at University level for many years. He delivers modules on all things cultural including theatre, literature, film, television, media practices, texts, and audiences. Often with a little history, social science, criminology,  and discourse analysis thrown in.

Enterprise interest and activities

In partnership with companies including Entertainment One UK and Open Clasp Theatre Ben puts together film screenings and cultural events within the Teesside area to tackle difficult social issues . Here discussion activities are facilitated between the public, charities, public sector workers, councillors, human rights organisations, and academics to raise awareness and influence policy. Particularly successful events include his work on Ken Loach's film I, Daniel Blake, and Catrina McHugh's play Key Change.

Ben also delivers Holocaust Memorial Day learning activities on campus annually. 


  • You're Nicked: A History of the British Television Policeseries, 1955 to today. Manchester:Manchester University Press, 2019 [Forthcoming]

  • 'Intervening in Social Care issues: The Work of Amber Films and Trade Films in 1980s North East England' in Hannah Tweed, Amy Holdsworth,and Karen Lury (eds.) Discourses of Care: Media, Medicine and Society. London: Routledge, 2018 [Forthcoming]

  • ‘“I’m a Copper not a Welfare Officer”: Emergent FeministThought in Hunters Walk and 1970s British Police Series’in Critical Studies in Television  11:3 (November2016)

  • 'Rediscovering The Roses of Eyam: A Forgotten Television Play' in Journal of adaptations infilm and performance 9:2       (Autumn 2016)

  • 'Cathy Come Off Benefits: A comparative ideological analysisof Cathy Come Home and Benefits Street' in Journalismand Discourse Studies 1:2 (February 2016)

  • ‘Narrative Form and the British Television Studio 1955-63’in Historical Journal of Film, Radio and Television 34:3(June 2014)


  • “Ah! Our very own Juliet Bravo, or is it JillGascoine?” Ashes to Ashes and Representations of Gender’in Jonathan Bignell and Stephen Lacey (eds.) British TelevisionDrama: Past, Present and Future, 2nd ed.(Basingstoke: Palgrave, 2 May 2014)  ISBN: 1137327561.

View Ben Lamb's Publications on TeesRep

In the news

  • Film aims to encourage social debate
    Evening Gazette, 27/09/2016; Noodls web, 27/09/2016
    Teesside University lecturer, Dr Ben Lamb was involved in free screenings of Ken Loach's I Daniel Blake to encourage debate on poverty, social exclusion and the increasing use of food banks.