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Reader in Social Sciences, Edge Hill University

Dr Zana Vathi specialises in migration studies and has been doing interdisciplinary research in this field since 2005.

Prior to moving to Edge Hill University in 2012, she worked as researcher and tutor at the University of Sussex at Brighton. She was part of the Sussex Centre for Migration Research in 2005-12. Her doctoral research consisted of a comparative qualitative research with children of migrants, first-generation migrants, and key informants in three different sites: London (UK), Thessaloniki (Greece) and Florence (Italy). This research was awarded the 2012 IMISCOE Maria Ioannis Baganha Prize as the best PhD project in migration studies in Europe. In Edge Hill she has established and runs the work of the Migration Working Group – North West (MWG-NW) a research and policy group that brings together academics, organisations and practitioners working on migration who are either based in the North West of the UK, or researching migration in this region.

Within the broad field of migration studies, Zana’s research has explored four interrelated research fields:

International migration in Europe and mobilities towards receiving countries and return to the country of origin.
Cross-generational comparative research at the intersection of (ethnic) identity, transnational ties and integration.
Urban space, aesthetics of the physical environment and belongingness.
Migration policies, migrants’ trajectories and psychosocial wellbeing.

Zana’s research has been funded by the Marie Curie Actions of the European Commission and the British Academy. Emerging avenues of her research focus on complexity and the links between the spatial and the psychosocial in the context of migration. She has served as international expert in the field of migration for organizations such as MPC/EUI, Terre des Hommes, GIZ, World Bank, EU Commission (Horizon 2020) and the IOM. In Liverpool she is part of the Asylum Seekers and Refugees Group (ASRG) of stakeholders organized by the Liverpool City Council. Zana is Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. In the period of June 2020 – May 2021 she will be ISR Fellow (Research and External Funding).


  • –present
    Reader, Edge Hill University