Current Students (Starting 2015)

Amy Corcoran

Having completed a BSc (Hons.) Psychology (2005) and MSc Research Methods in Psychology (2007), I worked on a large clinical research trial at The University of Reading focusing on childhood anxiety, before leaving to travel Asia for 19 months. During this trip I worked for a Burmese human rights NGO based in Thailand. It was this experience that led me to change career path, and enrol on an LLM in Human Rights Law at Birkbeck College in 2012.
My academic focus during this time moved increasingly towards considerations of state power, and its critique - with academic and journalistic writing projects often centring around protest and policing. As an artist, my contemplations over the power of dissent to achieve its aims have led me to wish to understand art’s role within this process, which is what my PhD will now focus upon.

Shereen Fernandez

I have a BA in Geography from Queen Mary University of London and an MA in Social Anthropology from SOAS. I also gained a PGCE after completing a two Leadership Development Programme with Teach First. I am now working towards a PhD at Queen Mary University of London.
Having worked as a teacher for two years in London, I am interested in how teachers are expected to promote Fundamental British Values (FBV).Teaching FBV is now statutory across schools in the UK and is subject to inspection by Ofsted. Looking closely at the Prevent legislation, I want to examine whether teaching FBV promotes inclusion and integration or whether it results in communities feeling excluded and isolated. This project will shed light on the policy and whether it is sustainable.

Christian Ilbury

I hold a B.A. (Hons) in English Language (Linguistics) from the University of Sussex and an M.A. in Linguistics from Queen Mary, University of London.
I am a sociolinguist who is broadly interested in phonological variation, its social correlates and its implications. Specifically, I am interested in the relationship between language, variation and change and technology/media. My doctoral research will analyse the relationship between offline phonological variation and non-standard orthographic variation in Twitter in an attempt to decipher the 'social meaning' of such variation. I am also interested in phonological theory; particularly exemplar theory and the phonology/orthography interface, linguistic style and socio-phonetics.
Twitter: @Christian_Ilbury

Angus McNelly

PhD - School of Politics and International Relations, Queen Mary University of London MSc - Development Studies, SOAS University of London BSc - Economics and Mathematics, University of Bristol
My research project is an examination of women within the indigenous social movements that characterised the revolutionary period of 2000-2005 in Bolivia. These cycles of struggle, grounded in indigenous episteme and a history of radical syndicalism, threw up new and innovative ways of doing politics, eventually culminating in the writing of a new constitution through the participatory democratic process of the constituent assembly. What caused a population to rise up and reject the dominant social logic? And what were the alternatives that were conceived with and then proposed by such social struggles? Much has been written about this period of Bolivia’s recent history. The most prominent areas of investigation have been the political economy of privatisation, and struggles against neoliberal reforms; the crisis in the liberal state and the political rupture caused by the social movements of this period; and the tensions that arise in a plurinational context shaped by multiple indigenous episteme operating alongside the occidental logic of the post colonial state. However, theorisation about women’s place in these events remains an obvious lacuna in the literature, and thus my research seeks to bridge the gap between analysis of struggles against the liberal state and neoliberalism; and women’s involvement in indigenous movements. I aim to do this by utilising a critical Marxist framework grounded in the work of the Italian Marxist Antonio Gramsci, using theoretical developments that have emerged from Bolivia since the work of notable political theorist René Zavaleta Mercado.
ILAS Latin American Anthropology Seminar Series, organising committee member Historical Materialism 2015 Latin America Stream Latin American Marxism Reading Group Radical Feminism Reading Group Tour Guide, Mayfair

Jon Gunnar Olafsson

I have a BA in Media and Communications from Goldsmiths (2005), an MA in International Relations from the University of Iceland (2008) and a Postgraduate Diploma in Social Science Research Methods from the University of Iceland (2012). Currently I am working on my PhD thesis at the Media and Communications department at Goldsmiths.
My research investigates the interaction and working practices of different actors within the mediated public and private policy spheres in small states, using Iceland as a case study. This will be achieved through a mixture of qualitative semi-structured elite interviews and a wider quantitative public survey. The project will fill a glaring research gap in the political communication literature concerning small democratic states.
Prior to starting my PhD I worked as a journalist in Iceland and also as a lecturer at the University of Iceland. Furthermore I participated in several cross-national research projects at the Centre for Small State Studies in Reykjavík.

Rosamund Oxbury

Graduated with 1st class hons. BA English Language & Literature from the University of Oxford, July 2014.
Sociolinguistics, language contact and specifically Multicultural London English: the proposed PhD dissertation will measure the phonological variables identified by Cheshire et al. (2011) in three different boroughs of London, to look for similarities and differences in the multi-ethnolect across the city, and examine the possibilities of geographical diffusion of MLE features, and of local innovations.
Between finishing her BA and commencing the MA at QMUL, Rosie completed the Trinity Certificate of TESOL, and taught English as a foreign language in Bulgaria.

Chloe Peacock

I have a BA in Anthropology and Sociology from Goldsmiths (2010) and an MA in Anthropology from the University of Sussex (2013). I am now working towards my PhD in the Sociology department at Goldsmiths.
My research is concerned with tracing experiences of punishment in the wake of the 2011 London riots. While my project will focus on the ways in which the criminal justice response to the riots, has been experienced, I am also interested in the effects of punishment in a broader sense. This research builds on my MA dissertation, 'Remembering the riots: Citizenship and ‘social cleansing’ after the London riots of 2011', which was published by the Howard League for Penal Reform in 2014 (
My research includes collaboration with the Howard League for Penal Reform ( I occasionally blog on matters relating to my research: see e.g.
Twitter: @chloepeacock87

Peter Rees

I completed my BA in English at the University of Sussex, graduating in 2010 and my MSc in Social and Political Theory at Birkbeck College, University of London.
My PhD combines a poststructuralist theoretical approach with contemporary critical migration literature to investigate the relationship between human rights and citizenship in the current nation-state system. In so doing, the aim is to understand how non-citizens may carry out acts of political agency that produce citizens and contest the terms of their exclusion from the demos.

Maddalena Ronchi

I hold both my BA and MSc in Economics and Social Sciences from Bocconi University. I completed the MRes in Economics at Queen Mary, University of London.
I am broadly interested in Labor Economics. Specifically my doctoral research will be in the area on applied micro labor, with a particular focus on topics related to the impact of migration on the receiving labor market and on issue related to the area of personnel economics.

Jasmine Tan

I graduated from King's College London with a BMus in Music (2013) and went on to do an MSc in Music, Mind and Brain at Goldsmiths, University of London (2014).
I am interested in brain imaging, music cognition and flow, an altered state of consciousness that results from intense engagement in a challenging and enjoyable activity. My research involves using neuroimaging methods to study the brain response patterns in flow experience, particularly in musicians and computer gamers. We hope that understanding the brain in flow will shed more light on the characteristics of flow and enable us to explore the possibility of using neurofeedback to improve flow experience.

Sarah Walker

I hold an MSc in Development Studies from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS). I have worked for several years in the refugee sector in the UK as both a refugee support worker and a researcher, as well as on academic projects including 'bEU Barriers to EU Citizens' at COMPAS, University of Oxford as well as ‘Tried and Trusted? The role of Non-Government Organisations in Asylum Seeker and Irregular Migrant Voluntary Returns’, a joint research project conducted by the ESRC Centre for Population Change (CPC), University of Southampton and COMPAS, and SMILE at the Refugee Council, which examined the barriers refugee children face in accessing education in the UK.
Building on my previous research experience, my doctoral research seeks to critique the ‘sedentarist’ perspective that underpins immigration policy. It will critically explore how separated young people experience notions of return as they turn 18 and how this impacts upon their sense of self and belonging. Through a comparative analysis of two EU countries, the UK and Italy, it seeks to shed light on the state’s role in creating vulnerabilities, young people’s ability to negotiate the space created by different migration regimes, and how they construct a sense of self through them.
I am actively involved in working with refugee and migrant groups in London and campaigning for change in immigration policy.
twitter: @stowsarah

Nathan Young

BA Slavic Linguistics/BS Business Administration (University of North Carolina) MA Linguistics (Stockholm University)
Research interests include the intersection of language, social class, and ethnicity in Scandinavia. My dissertation project is on sociophonetic meaning, variation and change in Stockholm Swedish and how this variation is induced, maintained, and framed by late-modern social forces. These include migration, racialization and ethnic boundary-making as well as consumption, habitus, and taste.