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Visiting research fellows

Our Centre hosts a number of Visiting Fellows - scholars from the UK and abroad who are committed to our interdisciplinary vision and who want to contribute by giving seminars or providing advice to our students. If you would like to be considered to be a Research Fellow and contribute to teaching, then please send your CV to

Current research fellows

  • Rampaul Chamba, sociological study of epidemiology

    Rampaul Chamba's initial academic training was in Sociology at London School of Economics and the University of Essex. After Essex, he worked on health inequalities social policy research on projects funded by the Department of Health, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, and NASUWT, in areas of adult mental health services, deafness, physical disability, and children's mental health. He spent five years at the University of California, San Diago as part of a multi-disciplinary Science Studies Programme in the sociology, history, and philosophy of science. During this period he contributed teaching to two major undergraduate writing programmes, The Making of the Modern World and Dimensions of Culture.

    Within the UK, over the last few years, he has been involved with national, regional, and local initiatives in minority ethnic mental health inequalities, such as the Delivering Race Equality Programme (DRE) and the Mental Health Act 1983 (Revised 2007). This work involved collaboration and consultation work across statutory and voluntary mental health sectors involving a wide range of mental health professionals and service users/carers. In related positions, he has been a member of National MIND's External Relations Committee, a Trustee of the Afiya Trust, and Chair of a service user/carer panel on a Health Technology Assessment (HTA) funded project, presided by QMUL, on Therapeutic Communication in BME Populations: A Synthesis of the Evidence Base.

    Currently, he is writing his Ph.D thesis on epidemiologists' and activists' explanations for ethnic disparities in disgnoses of schizophrenia and admission to secondary mental health services among Black African Caribbean people within the UK. In addition, Rampaul works as a Policy Research Officer for a deaf-led charity called Deafinitions, he is a Citizen Advocate for the charity POhWER, and a Trustee of the British Sociological Association.

  • Anna Hope, examines the role of uncertainty in politics and literature.

    Anna Hope; photo: Jonathan Greet, 2014.

    Photo: Jonathan Greet, 2014.

    Anna Hope is a writer and actress living in London. She was educated at Oxford University, the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, and holds a master's degree in creative writing from Birkbeck college, University of London. As an actress she has played many leading roles in theatre, T.V. and film, originating the role of Novice Hame in Dr Who.

    Her first novel Wake, (Doubleday 2014), an exploration of the aftermath of WW1 and its impact on three women in London, was shortlisted for the New Writer of the Year at the National Book Awards, longlisted for the Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction, and shortlisted for the Historical Writer's Association Debut Crown Award. It has been published in 10 languages so far.

    Her second novel The Ballroom is due to be published by Doubleday in February 2016. It is set in the asylum of Yorkshire where her great, great grandfather died and deals, amongst other themes, with the history of eugenics in Britain.

    Her research interests cover psychogeography, feminism - particularly the writings of Virginia Woolf and Rebecca Solnit - the politics of uncertainty, and land rights.

Past research fellows

  • Dr Carol Brown-Leonardi, indigenous ways of life in Arctic regions

    Dr Carol Brown-Leonardi

    Carol’s research focuses on the traditional ways of life of the indigenous populations of the Arctic regions. Her latest research looks at reindeer herding in Lapland, examining:

    • cultural and historical aspects of the lifestyle;
    • reindeer racing and the positive effects it has on tourism; and
    • the new challenges that the reindeer herding community faces as the next generation is exposed to wider career and life choices.

    “The Reindeer Racing Cup is held annually in northern Lapland. The sport is different to horse racing as the reindeers are not bred and intensively trained over long periods. The Kiiminiki-Kollaja and Kaldoaivi herding communities welcome this research as reindeer racing techniques and traditions will be officially documented and conserved for the community and a wider audience. The reindeer racing organisations are interested in presenting reindeer racing to the international community and perceive the United Kingdom as a country that has a special relationship with Finland, thanks to the Santa Claus industry. As more interest has been focused on reindeer racing in the tourist media recently, the organisations are very keen to develop the World Reindeer Racing Cup, which will attract more researchers and tourists from the UK to this region of Finland, therefore initiating new businesses and collaborations in both countries.”

  • Dr Cynthia Machado Campos, Latin American history

    Dr Cynthia Machado Campos

    Dr Cynthia Machado Campos is a historian and senior lecturer in the Human Science Interdisciplinary PhD Programme in Federal University of Santa Catarina (UFSC), Southern Brazil. She is also a researcher in the groups History and Political Languages of CNPq (Brazilian Research Council) and UNICAMP (State University of Campinas, São Paulo).

    Cynthia worked for several years in the Department of History and the history postgraduate programme in the UFSC. She has written articles in the area of Brazilian history and is seeking to maintain a dialogue with cultural and political history. Some of her articles are about nationalism, diversity and identity in south Brazil, prohibition of foreign language in the 1930s and 1940s, the interventions of the state in foreign schools and the attempts of homogenization of immigrant places in Brazil. She has also explored the young German immigrant population in southern Brazil and the way this group reacted to the nationalisation campaign of the 1930s and 1940s; a campaign which sought to eliminate German culture and language from Brazil, raising many issues of identity for the German migrants and their descendants.

    She has a Master’s in History from PUC in São Paulo and a PhD from UNICAMP, Brazil. She did part of her PhD in Germany, in the Latin America Centre at Free University of Berlin. She has done research in several German archives and worked with the theme ethno-linguistic movements in southern Brazilian cities. She also did post-doctoral studies in the Department of History at the University of Essex between 2006 and 2008, and since then has become a Visiting Fellow in the Interdisciplinary Studies Centre (ISC) and Latin American Studies at Essex.

    She is now writing her third book about young people’s movements in the sixties and seventies. This is about the question of identity among young people in inner cities. She began by observing how historians, sociologists and psychologists have approached the subject of young people in the 1960s and 1970s and in her own research she has been looking at young people’s reality, including violence, and the way in which they express their identities through various cultural means in the sixties and seventies. Her main focus has been the cities of São Paulo and London, through which she has been able to compare the situation in Brazil and England. She is particularly interested in how young people maintain a sense of identity in the face of changes in society, and also in the theme of “otherness” in relation to immigrant populations. It means an investigation on how young migrants face significant challenges when it comes to finding and expressing their own identity.

    Cynthia’s first book was published in 2006, and considered the politics of language in the 1930s and 1940s, focusing on what happened in Brazilian private schools and to those students (who mainly spoke German) when the government banned the German language in southern Brazil. Her second book, published in 2008 examined the welfare state in Vargas in Brazil, and state philanthropy focusing on young people.

  • Dr Roseanna Martins, Latin American music

    Dr Roseanna Martins

    Dr Roseanna Martins is a social scientist specialising in Brazilian hip-hop music. She graduated from the University of São Paulo and completed her PhD at ECA/USP. She has published several books on the role of hip hop in Brazilian culture.

    “On a global scale, rap has been placing itself within an affirmative, reflective and narrative discourse (lyrical and musical) of its own representation, experiences and convictions. This turns it into an accessible combination of intensive practice of identity. It is seen as one of the auto-definition and auto-maintenance strategic cultural elements, a certain ideological self-defining subsistence about the relation that an individual establishes with his/her world or even the way of his/her existence in the world.”

    “The poetic-musical concept of rap in Brazil, as one of the main artistic and cultural movement’s mainstays, the hip-hop (integrated practices including dance, music and visual art), has been making great efforts on attempt to denounce and find solutions to factors that tend to prevent the pretension of progress in this country such as poverty, urban violence, police violence, racial discrimination, Afro-Brazilian self-stem retrieve, unemployment high rates, discrepancy in income distribution, use of drugs, failure in the educational system, slaughter among others.”

  • Dr Maria Sapignoli, anthropology of indigenous cultures

    Dr Maria Sapignoli

    Dr Maria Sapignoli is an anthropologist who recently completed a doctoral dissertation at Essex on indigenous peoples, identity and the politics of indigenous organizations, with particular reference to the San and Bakgalagadi of the Central Kalahari, Botswana. Her doctoral dissertation was entitled Local Power through Globalised Indigenous Identities: The San, the State, and the International Community. She has carried out fieldwork in southern Africa and in the United Nations. Her research and background is highly interdisciplinary, having been trained and carried out work in anthropology, ethnography, sociology, philosophy, history, international development, human rights and cross-cultural indigenous peoples’ studies.

    Maria’s present research and professional plans include carrying out a comparative analysis of indigenous peoples’ organizations and movements in Africa, working on health and well-being of indigenous and other peoples, and turning her doctoral dissertation into a book. She is conducting research on the social, nutritional, and health impacts of resettlement, the effects of extractive industries such as mining, social impact assessments of globalization and ways to promote social and environmental sustainability. She is seeking grant support for her work, and is publishing her findings in journals, book chapters and books. Currently she is working on an edited volume that will be published in Italian: Indigenous Peoples in Africa: Global, National, and Local Articulations (Unicopli, Milano).