Personal profile

Research interests

Marsha Wood is a Research Associate at the Instititue for Policy Research.


Marsha is interested in:

  • Universal Credit
  • Low income families
  • Children and young people and welfare
  • Young parents and Universal Credit
  • Young people, disadvantage and relationships
  • Qualitative and longitudinal research


Marsha joined the IPR as a researcher in 2016. Between 2018 and 2022 Marsha worked on a qualitative longitudinal ESRC funded research project lead by Jane Millar and Rita Griffiths (University of Bath) and with Fran Bennett (University of Oxford) about couples claiming Universal Credit. Since 2022 Marsha has continued to work with Rita Griffiths on a qualitative longitudinal project funded by abrdn Financial Fairness Trust tracking households with at least one earner claiming Universal Credit to explore how the monthly assessement of Universal Credit works in practice. Recently, Marsha has publised articles on the topics of childcare and Universal Credit, the experiences of parents claiming Universal Credit during the pandemic, and the experiences of young parents claiming Universal Credit.


Marsha previously worked as a researcher in the School for Policy Studies at the University of Bristol (2005-2016) where she worked on various research projects related to disadvantaged young people and children in care. Marsha completed her PhD in 2021 whilst working at the IPR, on the topic of the importance of relationships in the lives of disadvantaged young people. Marsha's PhD included four of her earlier published papers around this topic. Marsha has also worked as a management information officer for Bath council (2004-2005) and a research officer in central Government (2000-2004).


Marsha completed her PhD (2021) and MSc in Social Research (2000) at the University of Bath and her BSc in Scoiology and Anthropology from the  University of Hull (1999)

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions


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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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