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Personal profile

Scholarly biography

I joined the University of Brighton in 2009 as Post Graduate Research in the School of Environment and Technology, where I studied and taught Human Geography including global issues management and several international field study trips. I completed my PhD on Student Identities in Higher Education in 2016. I have a Post Graduate Certificate in Education (Institute of Education) and a BA(Hons) in History of Art and Archaeology [Asia and Africa] (School of Oriental and African Studies).

In 2014 I also joined the University’s International Events Management course team within the School of Business and Law to reflect my industry work as a director of an events company in East Sussex. I have more than twenty years’ experience in the arts and cultural sector, producing a range of festivals and events aimed at community engagement and reflecting diversity in all its forms. I am interested in events that take place in public spaces and how barriers to all artforms can be reduced, and how events can be more sustainable.

I have taught across all the University campuses in events management, human geography, global citizenship, and anti-racist education.

I am a member of the Association of Events Management Education Executive Committee, and am the lead organiser of the 17th Annual Forum hosted by the University of Brighton in 2021, linking with international carnival industry professionals and researching barriers to accessibility.

Approach to teaching

Much of my teaching is International Event Management although I have also delivered lectures in human geography, global citizenship and anti-racist education. I incorporate values and diversity into all taught programmes and my teaching takes a student-centred approach considering what is most useful to the student. My pedagogic approach brings student-centred activities and practical tasks for students to take from the lecture theatre to the real world.

 

My background in industry is current and relevant and I am passionate about delivering and attending events and festivals. I bring live experiences to the classroom and encourage student participation, discussion and critical thinking. I currently teach on a range of undergraduate and postgraduate modules including: Event Operations & Project Planning; Event Experience Design; Student Live Event; Managing Event Organisations; Understanding Events' Stakeholders: competing interests, clashes & conflicts; Risk Management; Applied Professional Practice; Dissertations (UG/PG and Final Project: Wittenborg students).

Research interests

My overall interests are in outdoor public events and festivals. This has culminated in an industry sector review of outdoor dance and includes research into Journeys Festival of Dance. I have recently researched outdoor dance as a n approach to engage new and wider events audiences. I am interested in events that take place in public spaces and how barriers to all artforms can be reduced. In valuing diversity in all its forms, I am interested in making events accessible.

I have researched community participation and audience reach in events in Ghana and Brighton working with internationally renowned visual artist Dr Serge Attukwei Clottey. This work included two aspects:

  • a contribution of community festivals to cultural life in Labadi, Ghana, with Professor Marina Novelli and Dr Adam Jones
  • and volunteers’ responses to the messages of sustainability within the exhibition at Fabrica Gallery, Brighton, with Professor Marina Novelli and Dr Nigel Jarvis     

The events industry is a growing sector with considerable events focusing on the environment. I am interested in how events can positively contribute to both society and the environment. My industry experience has included twenty years’ experience delivering events that strive to reduce environmental impacts.

Further, I am interested in researching the sustainability of events, in the widest sense to explore lasting impacts within host communities.

My PhD explored identities, space and place, and these are fundamental to my research approach.  My data collection was through a mixed-methods approach. This incorporated visual methods alongside semi-structured interviews with key actors and a questionnaire survey of undergraduate students in Hastings, East Sussex. I used photo-elicitation to give a voice to my participants who created, and then reflected on, storyboards to identify their student identities.

I am a member of the University of Brighton’s Research Enterprise Group in Tourism, Hospitality and Events.

Supervisory Interests

I am interested in supervising Post Graduate Researchers in events, public space, and identities. I am also keen to support students researching diversity in all its forms, as well as those looking at accessible and sustainable events.

The doctoral project I am currently supervising is examining the value of social entrepreneurship and volunteer support within community sports events.  

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