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Having joined the Department of Education in September 2013 as a Research Officer to support the research of the Head of Department, I became a lecturer in Education and Social Justice in March 2015. Prior to that I spent five months in South East Asia where I conducted field research in Phnom Penh, Cambodia into Innovative Practice in Secondary Education (Results for Development). Before this I worked at the University of Nottingham as a qualitative researcher on a number of projects including Policy Enactment in Successful Schools in the UK and Hong Kong (ESRC), School-University Partnerships; Widening Participation (HEFCE), The Impact of School Leadership on Pupil Outcomes (DCSF), Effective Classroom Practice (ESRC), Peace Education in Britain and Jordan (British Academy) and New Public Diplomacy (British Council).
I have worked with a number of Development Education Centres (DEC) in Britain and Non-Government Development Organisations (NGDO) in Spain, primarily in voluntary roles. In particular, I worked for Mundi DEC teaching global citizenship education, development theory and education for social justice. It was here that I developed my interest in development education, and conducted an ESRC funded doctoral study at the University of Nottingham comparing development education in Britain and Spain. I spent a year based at the University of Granada collecting data and was awarded my PhD in July 2013.
My first degree was a BSc in Natural Sciences; mathematics and philosophy (Durham University), after which I attained a Cambridge University Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults (CELTA) from International House, Seville, and I taught English for two years in the British Institute in San José, Costa Rica and then a further two years in Barcelona, Spain, where I also worked as a volunteer for two NGOs: Educación sin Fronteras and Intermón Oxfam. I returned to the UK in 2005 to read for an MA in Diplomacy and International Relations (University of Nottingham). In 2009 I completed a further MA in Educational Research Methods (University of Nottingham).
My primary research interests are in international development and global citizenship education, social justice, dialogic teaching and critical thinking; I have undertaken research in both formal and non-formal educational settings with adults as well as young people. I recently completed a project on young people’s experiences of international volunteering and on the role of learning communities and non-formal spaces for learning in higher education settings. I am currently working on projects on the role of Buen Vivir in conceptions of development and implications for Higher Education, and on the implementation of the sustainable development goals (SDGs) taking a multi-perspective approach to concepts of development through case studies of sustainable energy production and new technologies in rural communities.
I am on the advisory board for the Centre for Applied Human Rights (CAHR) and on the management committee of the International Development Network (IDN).
I am a member of the British Association of International and Comparative Education (BAICE) executive committee and I am currently leading the organisation of the 2018 Conference on Comparative Education and Development Alternatives – Critiques, innovations and transitions. I am also co-convenor of the European Association of Development Institutes (EADI) working group on Education for Global Justice and Citizenship Engagement.
I have presented my work at a number of international conferences including EADI (European Association of Development Institutes), BERA (British Education Research Association), and BAICE (British Association of International and Comparative Education) and I have given invited talks at the Institute of Education (University College London) on Transformative Learning through Development Education NGOs in Britain and Spain, and at the University of Jaume I (Castellón, Spain) on Development Critiques and the Implications of the Concept of Buen Vivir for Education.
I am currently employed as a consultant for Global Education Derby, evaluating and monitoring the Money, Power, Respect project.