Current Students (Starting 2013)

Sarah Burton

Having completed a BA (2007) and M.Litt (2009) in English Literature at Newcastle University I spent several years dabbling in various artistic projects before returning to academia. I completed my PGCE at the University of Cambridge in 2012 during which I undertook research into the notion of authority and writing in the English Literature canon. I then moved to the University of Glasgow for my MRes in Sociology and Research Methods.
My doctoral research investigates the value system(s) underpinning the production of knowledge in contemporary social theory/sociology. It examines ideas of power, authority and validity via a negotiation of the concepts of science and mess. In addition to this I am also co-convenor of the British Sociological Association's Postgraduate Forum and Activism in Sociology Forum.
Email: sop01sb@gold.ac.uk

Vicki Dabrowski

Vicki completed her BA at the University of Nottingham in Sociology and her MA in Gender and Culture at Goldsmiths. Subsequent to completing her MA in 2010, Vicki has been employed by a number of charities in the women's sector.
Integrating an analysis of women's negotiations with feminism within a framework of socio-cultural change, Vicki's PhD project centers on understanding the disjuncture between the current affirmation of, and the resistance to, feminism in a UK context. Concerned primarily with the way different axes or power and differentiation impact these negotiations, the research asks how social class and geographical location play a role in women's engagements/disengagements with feminism, and how this is shaped by the current context of austerity. Key themes of the research include: dis-identification; choice and individualisation; activism and resurgence; broader social and political configurations; axes of power and differentiation.
Email: sop01vd@gold.ac.uk

Éilish Duke

Éilish graduated from University College Dublin in 2010 with a BA (hons) in Psychology. She subsequently completed an MSc in Clinical and Cognitive Neuroscience at Goldsmiths, with a dissertation focussing on reward processing in the context of depression. After two years working in international education with the Fulbright Commission and Chevening Secretariat, Éilish was awarded ESRC funding to carry out doctoral research at Goldsmiths.
Her PhD focus will expand on her previous work at MSc level, using advanced quantitative techniques to investigate individual differences in hedonic tone in the context of major depressive disorder.
Email: ps001ed@gold.ac.uk

Cy Elliot-Smith

Crossing Visa-Land (Working Title) The procuration of Visas is one of the biggest growth areas in international travel. Visa applications can be one of the most defining bureaucratic encounters with nation states that a person can have. The process of applying for visas can reveal a lot about the cultural temperament, cultural schisms, level of technical approach to bureaucracy and tolerances of ‘others’ within a nation. Over the last 30 years this situation has given rise to a number of private visa agencies of varying sizes that act as a broker between clients and consular sections who will manage visa applications for a fee. By utilising esoteric systems of knowledge and a variety of informal networks from embassy to embassy these agents negotiate through border zone bureaucracies. In recent years the growth in outsourcing consular services to application centres given rise to new and interesting tensions. My fieldwork has focused specifically on these sites in London, dealing with the consulates, visa agents from across the industry and clients of these agents in order to understand the changing processes in how ‘paper’ borders are administered and encountered. In this regard, my aim is to explore the shifting systems of monetising visa documentation, the increasing need for identity case-making in the visa application procedures and markets of informal associations that occur in such a place.
My areas of interest in this regard are states, bureaucracy, law, migration, labour, surveillance, informality and technology. I also enjoy reading about witchcraft and Big Data as well.
Email: C.Elliott-Smith@gold.ac.uk

Francisco Gallardo

Francisco J. Fernández Gallardo (aka Fran Gallardo) is an imaginative technologist with a background in design, physics, computing and precision engineering. He is a young active member of the Environmental Art Activism movement whose work is primarily focused on exploring the interface between society, environment and technology. He studied at the Architectural School of Seville, the Engineer School of Alcalá de Henares and the Polytechnic School of Madrid and has been a visiting scholar at the Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, & Human Development Program at New York University.
His research examines the cultural challenge of re-describing the role of biodiversity and water in urban systems -- or BiodiverCITY for short. By such, he aims to promote habitat reconstruction and critical evolution in the Anthropocene and subsequently, also personal and environmental health. This research aims to compile a cookbook of recipes and menus as vehicles for participatory interventions, tasting interfaces and social media outlets to re-introduce food as part of a networked global system -- nutrients that are moving through different organisms and ecosystems -- to be reinvented, re-imagined and creatively hacked. Bon appetit.
Email: f.j.fernandezgallardo@qmul.ac.uk

Daniel Gover

Daniel has a BA in Politics from the University of Nottingham and an MPhil in Politics from the University of Cambridge.
His PhD will look at the engagement of religious groups with the policymaking process in Britain.
Daniel also works for the Constitution Unit in the Department of Political Science at UCL, where he is researching the Westminster parliament’s legislative process. He has previously worked at the House of Commons, and he is the author of Turbulent Priests? (2011) for the think tank Theos, which analyses the political contribution of the Archbishop of Canterbury in contemporary England.
Email: d.p.gover@qmul.ac.uk
Website: qmul.academia.edu/DanielGover

Deborah Grayson

I'm based in the Media and Communications Department at Goldsmiths, where I did the MA in Political Communications. My BA is in Social Anthropology.
My Ph.D. is an ESRC-funded collaboration with interfaith charity 3FF, were I help with monitoring and evaluation while trying to answer my own research questions. My research focuses on how knowledge is produced, the relationship between knowledge and belief, and the role of media technologies in spreading and accrediting ideas.
Email: co101dg@gold.ac.uk

Liam Harney

MRes Geography, Queen Mary, University of London (2014) BA Geography, University of Southampton (2013).
Research Interests: Pragmatism, Publics, Public Geographies, Community Organising, Participatory Action Research, Community, London’s Housing Crisis.
My doctoral research will experiment with a new approach to participatory action research by developing a model of engagement based on the principles and theories of American Pragmatism, and the political theory of John Dewey. Supported by an Antipode Scholar-Activist award, the project will utilise the methods of community organising, as developed by Saul Alinsky, to facilitate the formation of a place-based public which is able to identify and take action to solve the shared issues of a geographical community. Tracing this approach to that taken by Bill Bunge and the Detroit Geographical Expedition and Institute, I will work with residents living in the E14 post-code of Tower Hamlets, one of the most economically deprived boroughs in the UK, I intend to conduct a piece of participatory action research that both builds a sense of place-based community to unite diverse groups around a common political cause, and allows for ordinary people to use the resources of the university to address the issues that matter to them.
Email: l.e.harney@qmul.ac.uk

Nele Jensen

Originally trained as a medical doctor, Nele spent the last few years working as a freelance consultant on various research projects while also completing a part-time MA in Philosophy, Politics and Economics of Health at UCL.
Nele's research focuses on knowledge production in global health, and in particular on 'evidence-based' approaches to health policy-making. The aim is to explore how 'evidence' and 'evidence-based' approaches are produced at global health institutions, what the new techniques, practices, and norms are that emerge as part of this process, how these approaches travel, how they are transformed to fit national and/or local contexts, and how in turn they transform the politics and governance of health.
Email: n.jensen@gold.ac.uk

Jenny McCurry

Jenny has a BA in Philosophy and Politics from Queen's University Belfast and an MSc in International and European Politics from the University of Edinburgh. After undergraduate studies which included a semester in Warsaw, she returned to Poland to work as an English teacher. Following her MSc, she worked and volunteered with several NGOs and carried out an internship at the European Commission in Brussels. In 2013 she completed an MRes in Social Research Methods at Queen's University Belfast where she examined trade union engagement with migrant workers.
Her thesis will focus on labour organising and migrant workers in the context of changes in the nature of work and the political participation of migrants. She is particularly interested in how coalitions are formed to campaign around employment issues and how these may operate in local, national and transnational spaces.
Email: j.c.mccurry@qmul.ac.uk

Samuel Miles

Samuel has a BA and MA in English from the University of Exeter, where his MA dissertation explored the personal archive collection of British children's and young-adult fiction writer David Rees. After working in higher education, PR and charities in Exeter, London, and Madrid, Samuel has returned to research work through an ESRC-funded PhD in Digital Technologies & The City administered by Queen Mary and Goldsmiths DTC.
Samuel uses queer theoretical approaches to analyse the impact of locative media mobile dating apps on both queer and heterosexual community-forging and sexual behaviours in urban spaces. Bringing together work from human and cultural geography, technology, and critical theory, his interdisciplinary project aims to contribute findings that can help us better understand the extent to which GPS and locative media can produce new urban cartographies.
Email: s.miles@qmul.ac.uk
Website: www.sexualityandthecityblog.wordpress.com.

Gynna Millan

Gynna is an architect from Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Manizales, and holds an MSc in Building and Urban Design for Development from University College London's Development Planning Unit (UCL DPU). She worked as the Media Coordinator for the DPU, and established the department's media group, integrating new media into research and teaching activities. Gynna has international experience using video for documentation and inclusive development planning in India, Brazil, Haiti and Bosnia & Herzegovina.
Gynna's PhD research focuses on the potential of digital technologies in enhancing and amplifying citizens' participation in the process of decision-making within urban planning. She is paying special attention to cities in the Global South and, more specifically, to the most socially excluded and deprived urban areas. The research is an attempt to re-think the concept of 'smart cities' by investigating how it can respond (or not) to the needs of those living in infrastructure-excluded areas. Gynna's PhD aims to deliver a smart cities-inspired business model for community engagement in development planning that is accessible to and affordable for deprived urban communities, NGOs and governments.
Email: g.f.millanfranco@qmul.ac.uk

Mubeena Nowrung

Mubeena Nowrung completed her BSc (Hons) in Psychology in 2011. She then pursued an MSc in Occupational Psychology in 2012, subsequently volunteering as a research assistant, getting involved in several projects such as managing data collection for an organisation-wide leadership survey, undertaking literature reviews, and providing recommendations for the development of psychometric tests for the workplace. She is a Graduate Member of the British Psychological Society (MBPsS) and a registrant on the British Psychological Society's Register of Qualifications in Test Use (RQTU) for the following: Registered Assistant Test User, Registered Test User: Occupational, Ability and Registered Test User: Occupational, Personality (Dimensions); thus, qualifying her to administer and provide guidance on how individuals manage tasks, handle relationships and cope with emotions at work.
Her doctoral thesis is about the mentor-mentee relationship, focusing on the interpersonal, personal and intrapersonal well-being of all involved in the workplace. It also explores how individuals can benefit from an optimal work environment, where they can develop professionally and personally, providing high levels of "productivity" (material and non-material) and ensuring good work-life balance within the current climate.
Email: ps301bn@gold.ac.uk

Alan Wager

Alan Wager holds a BA in Politics from the University of Nottingham, and an MSc in Social Research Methods from the University of Sussex.
He is now a doctoral candidate at Queen Mary, University of London, and his research can be placed within the field of British and European politics. Alan is looking at the long term relationship between the Labour party and the various guises of the Liberal party: from the Gladstone-Macdonald pact of 1903, to efforts towards co-operation between Labour and the Liberal Democrats pre and post the 2010 general election. Case studies of 'flashpoints' of inter-party co-operation will be analysed to contribute to the academic understanding of historic 'Lib-Lab' relations; while drawing upon existing literature on coalition in political science, particularly theories based upon qualitative, in-depth ways of solving puzzles of coalition formation.
Email: a.j.wager@qmul.ac.uk

Elaine Williams

Elaine completed both her BA in Anthropology and Media, and her MA in Anthropology and Cultural Politics, at Goldsmiths University of London.
Her PhD will research cultural understandings of weapons and their social implications. Drawing upon six years of experience working with young people who have carried weapons in London, Elaine's work confronts the discrepancies and contradictions of weapons that are evident across the scale. From knives, guns and tasers, to drones, missiles and nuclear bombs; her research embarks on a vital theoretical repositioning of weapons in order to reveal the complexities of weapons as cultural practices. Elaine's project explores such practices as socially active in the production of behaviours and narratives, both locally and globally, that impact upon us all.
Email: an001ew@gold.ac.uk

Hui Zhao

I graduated with a BA in English in 2010 and then went on to get an MA in Linguistics from Queen Mary in 2012.
My principle research interest lies in the sociolinguistics of Mandarin Chinese, especially phonetic/phonological variation in the standard language. I have also conducted research in bilingualism and media linguistics. Using advanced quantitative methods, my PhD research focuses on young Chinese speakers' use of the local language in Beijing. I am investigating both the linguistic and social implications of this phenomenon in order to reveal youngsters' new social identity in a developing communist country.
Email: hui.zhao@qmul.ac.uk
Website: linguistics.sllf.qmul.ac.uk/people/hui-zhao