I joined the School of Management in February 2012. Between 2012-2014 I left Leicester to work at the University of Potsdam, Germany, on a two-year Marie Curie Postdoctoral Fellowship. The research grant enabled me to conduct a comparative case study of three global destinations of tourism in areas of urban poverty. I came back to Leicester on a full-time lectureship in September 2014 where I am teaching on the undergraduate, postgraduate, MBA and PhD programmes with a focus on qualitative research methods and the sociology of organisation.
Previously I was a lecturer at Bristol Business School, University of the West of England (UWE), where I taught on the tourism and enterprise undergraduate programmes and on the MBA. I am a Senior Research Associate of the University of Johannesburg and a Visiting Research Associate at the Centre for Tourism and Cultural Change (CTCC), Leeds Metropolitan University. I have an MSc in Political Sciences from Freie Universität Berlin and a PhD from Leeds Metropolitan University.
My research interests converge at the intersections of mobility, organisation and politics. In this context I consider the role of transnational mobilities, from activists to tourists, in the formation of a global social question with a focus on the way slums are becoming destinations of a range of better-off travellers, in solidarity and volunteer travel and in slum tourism. This is also the topic of most recent book ‚Slumming It‘ (Zed Books 2016).
In 2012 I received a Marie Curie Post Doctoral Fellowship from the EU for a two-year research project on slum tourism, conducted at the University of Potsdam, Germany. The project website is www.qualpot.eu. Prior to this I won an early career grant from the University of the West of England to study tourism in Rio de Janeiro’s favelas and to initiate the foundation of a slum tourism research network. I co-organised the first conference in this field of research in December 2010 at UWE. This led to the publication of a special issue on slum tourism in the journal tourism geographies and a book I edited on the same topic. In May 2014 I hosted the second slum tourism network conference in Potsdam and I am co-editor of two special issues emerging from the conference publications. More information on the slum tourism research network can be found on its webpage www.slumtourism.net
In my second empirical research field I study the ways in which social movements organise themselves in response to place and space with a particular interest in the organisational form of the protest camp. In 2013 I published a book on protest camps as an organisational form (with Zed books) in collaboration with Anna Feigenbaum (Bournemouth University) and Patrick McCurdy (Ottawa University). I have taken part in the foundation of the protest camp research network. In the framework of the network, I am currently co-editing a book on case studies of protest camps across the world (forthcoming with Policy Press in 2017). I am also one of the founders of the protest camp research collective.
I have previously worked in an ESRC research project on Alternative Media Organisation in the 'Global South' (RES-155-25-0029).
Earlier work includes the foundation in 2003 of a research think tank, the Institute of Nomadology (InNo) in Berlin.