About the Jubilee Centre for Character and Virtues

The Jubilee Centre is a pioneering interdisciplinary research centre focussing on character, virtues and values in the interest of human flourishing. Founded in 2012 by Professor James Arthur, the Centre is a leading informant in the UK and internationally on character education policy and practice.  The Centre works with various audiences including schools, teachers, young people, parents, policy makers and fellow researchers.

The Centre aims to strengthen character through:

  • Undertaking internationally recognised and impactful research;
  • Deepening and extending knowledge and understanding about flourishing, character, virtues and character education through taught programmes, regular conferences, presentations and consultations;
  • Running the world’s first distance-learning MA in Character Education and supervision of PhD students;
  • Collaborating with organisations and individuals who share an interest in promoting character-based policy, research and practice in the interest of human flourishing. 

The Centre contends that character virtues are universal as they are found in all great faiths and civilisations, but are not restricted to religions.  The Centre adopts a non-political approach to its work, seeking to work across the political spectrum and build alliances with those interested in the promotion of character education in the interest of human flourishing. 

The Centre defines character education as all explicit and implicit educational activities that help individuals to develop positive personal strengths and qualities called virtues (moral, civic, intellectual and performative). There is a growing consensus in Britain and around the world that virtues such as practical wisdom, compassion, honesty, self-control, justice, and respect, which contribute to good character, are part of the solution to many of the challenges facing society today. As such everyone should have the opportunity to develop good character throughout their lives, as

  • The virtues which make up character enable us to enjoy rewarding and productive lives; especially practical wisdom;
  • The more people with good character, the healthier our society;
  • Young people learn better when they also have good character;
  • Integrity and good character are equally important to knowledge and skills in our professions.

Highlights of the significant impact the Jubilee Centre has achieved since it was formed include:

  • Collaborated with international partners and individuals in over 175 countries;
  • Established the world’s first distance-learning MA in Character Education
  • Published over 350 academics publications in top tier journals with global reach;
  • Established the preeminent international annual conference in the field, held annually in Oxford;
  • Published the Framework for Character Education that won the overall QS Reimagine Education award in 2022;
  • Undertaken over 20 extensive research projects; the impact has been rated 4* in two REF submissions.  

Contact us

Click here for to contact the Jubilee Centre or email jubileecentre@contacts.bham.ac.uk

Our Global impact

Since its launch in 2012, the Jubilee Centre has created significant engagement, influence and impact in the United Kingdom and internationally. From speaking at conferences, to teaching at workshops, and from working with academic colleagues, to meeting with ministers of state, the Centre has engaged in conversations on character across all of the major continents globally. 

Check out our Global impact here and our 2023 Exhibition here

A Decade Worth Celebrating – The Jubilee Centre’s 10th Anniversary Film

Celebrating the first ten years of the Centre ‘A Decade Worth Celebrating’ charts the journey since 2012 and captures its key messages and achievements. The film provides a snapshot of the breadth, scale and depth of the research, resources, publications created by staff that have been used to affect policy, pedagogy and practice as well as the opportunity to reflect on the last decade.