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Senior Research Associate, University of Cambridge

Dr Shana Cohen is Deputy Director of the Woolf Institute and a Research Associate with the Department of Sociology, University of Cambridge. Before coming to Cambridge, she was a Lecturer in Sociology at the University of Sheffield and taught Human Services and Politics of the Middle East at George Washington University. She has a PhD in Sociology from the University of California at Berkeley.

Shana has been engaged in both academic research and community-based work in Morocco, India, Egypt, Israel, England, and the US. Her research has focused on the transformation of the middle class and the politics of social action under neoliberalism, exploring how the constitution of identity intersects with economic insecurity and ideologies of human potential and social value. Shana's current writing and research projects reflect her practitioner and academic trajectories - the first project involves rethinking local management of resources to improve frontline service effectiveness and the second, how grassroots social action indicates the emergence of a new political consciousness controverting management models and allocation of resources based on commodification of human potential and vulnerability. She is also the PI (with Ed Kessler, Founder Director of the Woolf Institute) on a comparative study of how the recession in Europe has affected trust between religious minorities in London, Paris, Berlin, and Rome.


  • –present
    Senior Research Associate, University of Cambridge