Welcome to my website. I am a writer, researcher and educator working on communication and social change. My work looks at how media and technological practices shape political action. I am particularly interested in how communication is mediated at sites of struggle–be it by songs, barbed wire fences or pepper spray.
I recently co-authored the book Protest Camps (Zed 2013), which explores the media, governance and social practices of over 50 protest camps across the span of 50 years. From the Aboriginal Tent Embassy to Occupy Wall Street, Protest Camps looks at how strategies of resistance travel and adapt as they move around the world.
My current project on tear gas and global policing was funded by a Wellcome Trust Medical Humanities grant. It uses digital humanities and data storytelling methods to track the movement of tear gas from the trenches of WW1 to the streets of today, asking ‘How did it become normal to police communication with poison’? Tear Gas: From the Battlefields of WW1 to the Streets of Today will be published by Verso in Spring 2017.
You can find my writing in academic journals such as South Atlantic Quarterly, ephemera, Feminist Media Studies and Communication and Critical/Cultural Studies. I also write for alternative and popular media outlets.
I currently work as a Principal Academic in Digital Storytelling at Bournemouth University in the Southwest of England. Before joining BU I taught at RAIUL and held fellow positions at the Rutgers University Center for Historical Analysis, the London School of Economics and Political Science, and the Institute for Historical Research at University of London. I graduated from McGill University in 2008 with a PhD in Communication Studies. My doctoral research, supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Council of Canada and the Beaverbrook Fund at McGill, looked at creative resistance and technology at the Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp.
For me, social justice is inseparable from teaching and education. Critical thinking and compassionate dialogue are what put research into practice. I actively engage in teaching quality enhancement and learning innovation through my roles as a Fellow at the Centre for Excellence in Media Practice and as an Associate and Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. As part of this commitment, I am an avid supporter of open source pedagogies and collaborative learning, running the wethinking the classroom project and serving on the advocacy forum for the Open Library of Humanities.
Beyond the university, I run a variety of workshops on creative action planning, collaboration and digital communication strategies for NGOs and local community groups. I also provide consultancy for campaigns, archives and museum exhibitions related to my research. This has included contributions toward the Cruel Designs Exhibition at Banksy’s Dismaland, Disobedient Objects show at the Victoria & Albert Museum in 2014, the Signs of Change exhibition and the Heritage Lottery funded Music & Liberation traveling show.