Daren Britt

Research activity per year

Personal profile

Knowledge exchange

During his career at the University of Brighton Daren has committed much of his time to supporting community organisations and local authority strategic groups in developing their workforce development strategies around substance use. Daren represented the University of Brighton on the regional (West Sussex, East Sussex, and Brighton and Hove) Drug and Alcohol Action Team: Workforce Development Training Group (2002-2012). Daren's work with this regional Workforce Development Group led to the consolidation of the Professional Certificate in Substance Misuse Intervention Strategies at the University of Brighton and then the two successor courses: the Foundation Degree in Substance Misuse Intervention Strategies, and then the BA Joint Honours in Criminology and Substance Misuse Interventions.   

During this time Daren co-founded the Association for Higher Education in Alcohol and Drugs (in 2009) with colleagues from other HEIs across the UK. As Chair of this organisation Daren became an executive  member of the NHS National Treatment Agency Workforce Development Committee.

With the imposition of austerity government many of these developments/initiatives were dissolved. Since 2014 Daren has been supporting colleagues across the University of brighton, in other HEIs, and in local third sector organisations to develop their substance misuse training and networking.      

Research interests

Daren's research interests cover addictions, substance use, and the education and training of substance use and addiction professionals. Daren is also interested in pedagogic research with a focus on Inquiry Based Learning.

Daren's research engagement has tended to be within community and/or Public Sector organisations with the primary aims of helping those organisations develop and improve their workforce and practice. Initial experiences in this role led to the publication of a co-authored chapter in a book which discussed Community-University Partnerships (see publications below).

A secondment to the West Sussex Drug (and Alcohol) Action Team (WSDAAT) between 2008-2011 enabled Daren to act as an Internal Verifier on their training programme and also to undertake and complete a Training Needs Analysis. Outcomes from this included the development, by the WSDAAT, of a Workforce Development website.

Daren's involvement with the Brighton based counselling organisation MankindUK led to multiple internal projects which ultimately led to a re-evaluation of the organisation's mode of operation (MankindUK. 2010. Way of Working. MankindUK). This was followed by the development within MankindUK of a coherent Research Strategy (Britt, D. D. 2012. Mankind Research Strategy: Discussion Paper. MankindUK.)

Throughout this period Daren was working with colleagues within AHEAD to develop a coherent curriculum for the delivery of addiction and substance misuse courses in HEIs:

 AHEAD, 2010. Substance Misuse in HE: Discussion Paper to the Skills Consortium. Department of Health(National Treatment Agency).

AHEAD. 2010. Substance Misuse in HE: A Core Curriculum. AHEAD

AHEAD. 2010. Why HE qualifications in addiction/substance misuse matter. AHEAD

In 2014 Daren worked alongside colleagues from the School of Sport and Service Management, and England Boxing, to develop and successfully fund a pilot project to address the use performance and image enhancing drug use amongst amateur boxers. This project successfully brought together the University of Brighton and England Boxing with partners from the addiction and substance misuse treatment fields: Crime Reduction Initiative (now Change, Grow, Live) and the Federation of and Alcohol Professionals (now Addiction Professionals). 

Within the University of Brighton Daren has worked on a number of pedagogical initiatives. Prior to the pandemic Daren co-ordinated the discussion on the formation of a SASS REG Pedagogy and Practice. He also has worked on a project (unfortunately terminated due to the pandemic) which was looking at the application of the Inquiry Based Learning within Criminology.   

Approach to teaching

Daren has a background in Drug Treatment and Counselling. This impacts on his approach to teaching which is highly student focussed. As much as is possible Daren prefers to deliver teaching that emphasises experiential learning. A key tool to enable this is the flip-learning model which encourages students to engage in short, topic specific tasks, followed by an in-depth discussion of the experience. This is particularly suited to Daren's teaching in the addiction fields and enables students, alongside the development of key concepts and theory, to develop their capacity for self-reflection, reflection on practice, and interpersonal skills.

Throughout his career, alongside his work as a Lecturer on academic courses, Daren has developed and delivered training courses for practioners within the substance misuse sector. The cross-fertilisation that has been enabled by these dual roles has enhanced teaching in both areas; bringing greater theoretical rigour to the teaching of practioners and greater experiential content to the teaching of University students.    

Education/Academic qualification

Master, PG Cert Learning and Teaching in Higher Education, University of Brighton

Sept 2012Aug 2015

Award Date: 3 Aug 2015

Master, PG Diploma Person-Centred Counselling, University of Brighton

Sept 2006Aug 2009

Award Date: 3 Aug 2009

PhD, Childhood Sexual Abuse Treatment in Residential Adult Substance Dependency Services: Containment and Engagement Processes., University of Brighton

Award Date: 1 Feb 2006

Master, PG Diploma Research Methodology, University of Brighton

Sept 2001Aug 2003

Award Date: 4 Aug 2003

Bachelor, BA Joint Hons Drama and English

Sept 1989Jul 1992

Award Date: 7 Jul 2003

External positions

Volunteer ADDER worker

1 Aug 2021 → …


Oct 2009Oct 2018

Seconded Trainer

Sept 2008Jul 2011

Senior Counsellor

Sept 2006Aug 2013


  • H Social Sciences (General)
  • Addiction
  • Substance Use
  • Criminology
  • Policy and Planning
  • social care
  • Alcohol
  • Alcohol-related offending
  • HM Sociology
  • Marxist philosophy of language
  • HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare
  • Welfare Reform
  • Wellbeing
  • BF Psychology
  • Counselling
  • cognitive psychology
  • Humanistic
  • Psychopharmacology


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