Professor David E Morrison


For more information on me, my work and publications see my website David E. Morrison

I graduated with a BA from the University of Hull, an MA from the University of Leicester, and was awarded my doctorate for my biographical study of Paul Lazarsfeld. This was later published in amended form and added to with a treatise on focus group research. (The Search for a Method 1998,) Robert Merton, wrote: 'A remarkable achievement - this is the most deeply informed volume on its twin subjects that I know of..'

Robert Merton was the originator of focus groups at the Bureau of Applied Social Research in 1941, and wrote of mine and McGregor's methodological work developing focus groups; 'Your concept of editing groups, and the research procedures you have begun to develop, strike me as a distinct advance well beyond the point reached by the Bureau...' 

My empirical work has covered an extremely wide range of social issues. My work on social movements caused the social geographer Jacquelin Burgess to consider that the the seminal work in the field was done by myself and Morrison in 1984 and anticipated much of the subsequent debate about the role of pressure groups and the primary definers of claim makers. 

My last major book, Media & Values (2007) based on my work over the years, led Paddy Scammel to identify it as 'clearly a cumulative critical assessment of the implications of research going back to the sixties' and judged its intellectual scope as 'astonishing' and 'a major piece of work'.

I was made Professor in 1999 by the University of Leeds and retired in 2010 as Professor Emeritus.

  • History of social research.
  • Methodological development.
  • Audience research on social issues.
  • The Media and construction of values.
  • Communications and technology.
  • Public service broadcasting and media regulation.
  • History of social research, especially understanding the audience and the idea of theindividual.

Research interests

History of Communications Research Methods

<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>


  • BA Hull
  • MA Leicester
  • PhD Leicester

Professional memberships

  • ICA