Johanna graduated from the University of Oxford (Jesus College), with a First Class (hons.) degree in Geography. She was then awarded a Canadian Rhodes Scholars Foundation Scholarship and went to the University of British Columbia, Canada, where she completed her MA and PhD. During her time at UBC she was awarded an Izaak Walton Killam Memorial Pre-Doctoral Fellowship. In January 2004, Johanna took up the post of Lecturer in Human Geography at the Department of Geography, University of Liverpool. She remained at Liverpool until December 2010, when she was appointed to Senior Lecturer in the School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University of Birmingham. She moved to Oxford in June 2013. Johanna is from Swansea, South Wales and currently lives near Shipston-on-Stour in South Warwickshire with her partner and two young children.
Johanna's research interests include international and transnational migration, young people and international higher education, and educational mobilities. She is particularly interested in understanding the ways in which experiences of (higher) education and subsequent employment are being transformed through internationalisation, and the relationship to (im)mobilities. She has recently completed a number of projects in this vein, including one with Rachel Brooks (University of Surrey) on British international students (British Academy, LRG-45489), and with Maggi Leung (Utrecht University) on transnational higher education in contemporary Hong Kong (ESRC and RGC, Hong Kong, RES-000-22-3000). She held an ESRC seminar series (with Rachel Brooks, Alison Fuller and John Holford) on the changing spaces of education, which is now published as an edited collection by Routledge (Brooks, R., A. Fuller and J. Waters (eds.) (2012) Changing spaces of education: new perspectives on the nature of learning). Johanna is currently working on a project on elite school geographies, with friend and colleague in sociology at Surrey Rachel Brooks.