• Freelance lecturer in conflict dynamics, UK and Netherlands
  • Mediator, coach & trainer in conflict coaching, facilitation and management
  • Company director, Community Resolve
  • PhD candidate, School for Policy Studies, University of Bristol (ESRC-funded, part time)

Place and date of birth:    London, March 4 1960

Following a full and varied career in both the public and private sectors, including several years working as a senior commissioning book and magazine project editor, I moved into the voluntary sector in 1999. Since then, I have worked as an accredited community, workplace and special educational needs mediator; a participatory facilitator,  trainer and university lecturer; and as the co-founder and co-director of an innovative and successful Bristol-based organisation, Community Resolve, which focused on social cohesion. The company now delivers online training for organisations and individuals in the constructive engagement with conflict and difference.

Over the same period, I became increasingly engaged in bridging practice and academia. I completed two Masters degrees and became a Visiting Fellow at the University of West of England, where I continue to develop and teach Masters-level modules around managing community dynamics. Following a 2012 ESRC Third Sector Exchange Fellowship (the first person from the voluntary sector to receive the award), I was again funded by the ESRC to do a PhD at the School for Policy Studies, University of Bristol. It looks at power relations and conflict dynamics in two cross-sector collaborative systems delivering community facing projects, one in the UK and one in Amsterdam.

Recent activities
  • January 2017        Workshop for senior UK civil servants on Difficult conversations, positive outcomes
  • February 2017     Organisation of 3-day ‘thinking space’ conference, Beyond ‘us’ and ‘them’, Brussels
  • May 2017              Delivery of two-day training, Making space for conflict, Haarlem, Netherlands
Work experience – current and previous

2003-present        Co-founder and Director of Community Resolve

2004-present       Occasional visiting lecturer at University of West of England and University of Bristol; lecturer on Diploma in Group dynamics, counselling and Conflict Resolution, the Forgiveness Project

2006-present       Visiting Fellow with the Centre for Psycho-Social Studies, University of West of England – post-grad teaching, knowledge exchange, delivering community development programmes

2014 – 2017      Guest lecturer & external examiner, Masters in Imagineering, NHTV Breda, Netherlands

2015 – 2017      Training and lecturing in positive team and group dynamics – University of Amsterdam & University of Leiden, Netherlands; open courses & in-houses courses, Netherlands


2012-2014            Chair, Independent Advisory Group to the Avon and Somerset Constabulary (voluntary)

2001-2013             Special Educational Needs mediator with Wessex Dispute Resolution Service (freelance)

2007-2009            Project lead, Bristol City Council, Respect for all programme (part time)

2000-2006            Copy editor/proof reader for Mediation Matters, Mediation UK magazine (freelance)

2002-2004             Occasional visiting lecturer at Birkbeck College, University of London (freelance)

2001-2002             Director, Mediation at Work, workplace mediation organisation (voluntary)

1999-2001            Member of the Education and Youth sub-committee (EYSC) of Mediation UK (voluntary)

1999-2001             Publications Development Officer, Women’s Aid National Office, Bristol (part time)

1996-1999            Mediation Mid Wales community mediator & management committee member; initiator of county-wide peer mediation service (voluntary)

1995–1999            Freelance writer and editor, including: The Guardian, the Independent, Readers Digest Books, Marshall Cavendish, Heinemann Educational, Thames & Hudson, Oxford University Press (freelance)

1984-1995            Project editor, Reader’s Digest, General Books (full time)  Copy / commissioning editor for Heinemann and many others (freelance)

1979-84                 Professional chef, London and Paris (full time)


Recent publications

Wilkinson, H (2015), ‘How do individuals construct their idea of conflict? Implications for mediator practice,’ Perspektive Mediation, Vol1 2015, Verlag Österreich

Hoggett, P, Wilkinson H and Beedell P (2013), Fairness and the Politics of Resentment, Journal of Social Policy, 42: 567­585, Cambridge University Press

Wilkinson, H (2012), Chapter: ‘Sharing worlds: managing complex community relationships in challenging times’, Public Engagement and the role of Social Science, eds Dr Stella Maile and Dr David Griffiths, Policy Press


Sample research reports and papers – see also

Wilkinson, H (2012), ‘Exploring links between poverty, conflict and race in the UK context’, for Oxfam UK

Wilkinson, H et al (2011), Promoting positive voices in diaspora communities – diaspora conflict research in three centres around the UK’, for International Alert

Beedell, P, Wilkinson, H, Hoggett, P and Garner, S (2010), Research into the impact of the recession and barriers to community cohesion in six Bristol wards’, commissioned by Bristol City Council, Community Development team

Wilkinson, H, (2009), ‘It’s all about the here and now – why young Bristolians are drawn to gangs’, commissioned by Bristol City Council Community Development Team

Hoggett, P, Garner, S, Beedell, P and Wilkinson, H (2008), ‘Hillfields – a community profile’, commissioned by Bristol City Council Community Development

Postgraduate education

To present            Numerous self-funded training courses and CPD modules

2014-ongoing       PhD candidate, School for Social Policy Studies, University of Bristol (ESRC funded)

2013-2014            MRes in Social Policy Research: conflict, security & justice, University of Bristol (ESRC funded, distinction)

2004-2006            MSc in Mediation and Conflict Studies, Birkbeck College, University of London (Distinction)

1999                       Postgraduate Certificate in Conflict Resolution Studies, University of Wales, Cardiff