Prof. Chris Whitehead

I joined ICCHS in July 2002. Prior to this, I worked as a curator, a lecturer in Art History and sometime languages teacher, translator and  interpreter in the UK, in Italy and in the US. My research activities focus on both historical and contemporary museology. I have published extensively in the field of art museum history, with particular emphases on architecture, display and knowledge construction. My second major strand of activity relates to education and interpretation practices in art museums and galleries, and includes considerable government-funded and policy-relevant research. In the context of museological study I have strong interests in learning theory, social constructionism, theories of representation, cultural cartography, time and place, co-production, disciplinarity and discourse. I am a co-convenor of the CSoP group.

P1090033 Dr Emma Coffield

I joined Media, Culture, Heritage (MCH) as a Teaching Fellow in 2015, having completed my PhD in this subject area, and became an Early Career Academic Fellow in 2016. My research concerns the sociology of contemporary art and artists, and I am particularly interested in artist-run initiatives, artistic identities, belonging, affect and everyday artistic practice and membership. I also work on the ‘Geographies of Art’ project that investigates the spatial politics and inequalities of art. I currently co-lead the Art Museum and Gallery Studies MA, and curated ‘Newcastle City Futures’ with colleagues in Architecture, Planning and Landscape in 2015. I am a co-convenor of the CSoP group.

 Dr Rhiannon Mason

I joined ICCHS in January 2001 as a Lecturer in Museum, Gallery, and Heritage Studies. Prior to this, I studied for a PhD at the  Centre for  Critical and Cultural Theory, Cardiff University, and taught at the universities of Cardiff and Glamorgan. Since August  2010 I have been the  Director of ICCHS. My research interests include: cultural theory, museological history, new museology, and museum representations of cultural identities. My work to date has focused on two main areas: 1) national museums and national identities, and 2) museological theory relating to issues of representation, communication, identity, diversity, and history curatorship. In 2007 I published a major, single-authored book on the National Museums of Wales. The book explored the extent to which national museums have been involved in the articulation and definition of nationhood and national identity within Wales, both in the past and today. This work has led me to new research interests in Englishness and Britishness; memory and museums; the relationship between government, politics, museums and galleries; and how museums and galleries contribute to public perceptions of place, belonging, and identity. I am particularly interested in how meanings are constructed and consumed within museums and galleries and the implications for curatorship and wider museum practice. My work seeks to connect theoretical debates with practical concerns.

 Dr Venda Louise Pollock

I joined Fine Art at Newcastle in October 2006 as a Lecturer in Art History and I am currently Head of Art History. Prior to this, I was an Urban Studies Research Fellow in Urban Cultural Regeneration at Glasgow University and I also taught at UCLan. I gained my PhD from the University of St Andrews in 2003 for a thesis examining representations of Glasgow in the visual arts. My research looks at the relationship between art and the urban environment (with particular interests in urban photographic surveys and public art practice), considering how art contributes to sense of place and different aspects of place-making and place-marking.

 Dr Peter Hopkins

I am a Reader in Social and Political Geography. Before this, I was a Lecturer in Human Geography at Lancaster  University, a Research Fellow in the Glasgow Centre for the Child and Society in 2005 and a Lecturer in Human  Geography at the University of Edinburgh in 2004. My overall research interests centre upon the challenges and complexities of inequality. More specifically, my work draws attention to the exclusionary ways in which various forms of discrimination and marginalisation – such as racism, sexism, sizism, ageism and religious intolerance – shape people’s everyday lives, structure the resources available to them and influence who they can become. This work is built upon a commitment to empirical research that is informed both by current debates in academic literatures and theoretical understandings about society and space, as well as – where appropriate – concerns of relevance to policy makers and practitioners.

GetFileAttachmentDr Simon McKerrell

Dr Simon McKerrell is interested in how music communicates meaning in everyday life, particularly how this is constructed as discourse. His research focuses upon how music and text communicates sectarianism, belonging and cultural heritage and how these relate to policy. Methodologically this relies upon critical discourse analysis, ethnography and multimodal analysis. He has previously held positions at the Universities of Sheffield and Glasgow and the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, and prior to this worked at the National Piping Centre in Glasgow. He is an expert performer of Highland-, Border- and Uilleann-pipes and has toured, taught and performed throughout the world. See website for further details. He is currently Head of Music at the International Centre for Music Studies at Newcastle University.

 Professor Mike Coombes

I have been a researcher in CURDS since the 1970s, becoming a Principal Research Associate in 1989 and Professor of Geographic Information (while still a contract researcher). I was the Executive Director of CURDS until 2006. My research interests include: geographic variation in British people’s life chances; local and regional analysis; definition of market and policy areas.  My work aims to improve ways of analysing social and economic statistics so as to maximise the ‘intelligence’ they can provide to policy-makers and others. More specifically, I have led a series of projects for the UK government to define Travel to Work Areas (the only official boundaries which are defined by academics).

 Dr Peter Kellett

I am a qualified architect with a Masters degree in Social Anthropology and a PhD which combines both disciplines. My research  focuses on the interrelationship between people and their environments, particularly disadvantaged groups who inhabit or create  environments in conditions of acute resource constraint or relative powerlessness. My recent work includes an edited book (with Felipe Hernandez of Liverpool University) Rethinking the Informal City: Critical Perspectives from Latin America. I plan to complement this with a companion volume: Inside the Informal City: Ethnographies of Building and Everyday Life in the Barrios of Latin America.

Professor Tim Kirk

I am Professor of European History at Newcastle University and part of the Research Group in European Urban Culture. My research interests are in the political culture of central Europe, and particularly Austria. I was a contributor to The City in Central Europe and co-editor of Printed Matters with Malcolm Gee, and of Subversion and Scurrility with Dermot CavanaghOther publications include  Nazism and the Working Class in Austria (Cambridge, 1996) and Nazi Germany (Palgrave, 2007). My recent work includes: editing (with Lud’a Klusakova, of Charles University Prague) Cultural Conquests, a collection of essays on the cultural dimension of conflict and occupation; and working on a book on The Nazi New Order in Europe – this project has generated a number of papers and articles on politics and culture in central south-eastern Europe during the Second World War, including contributions to Anthony McElligott and Tim Kirk (eds), Working towards the Führer and Roel vande Winkel and David Welch (eds) The Cinema and the Swastika.

Dr Geoff Vigar

I am a Senior Lecturer in Planning and Director of the Global Urban Research Unit. My research focuses on the following overlapping elements:  the politics of mobility, transport policy and infrastructure supply; spatial strategy-making; planning professionalism and ethics; media representations of planning and transport issues. Recent work includes: the research project, ‘The Changing Nature of Professionalism in Spatial Planning’ (with Zan Gunn); the project Spatial Planning, Innovation, Design and User Involvement (SPINDUS): IWT, Dec. 2009- Nov. 2013: exploring concepts of spatial quality through planning practices and user engagement; developing work looking at media representations of planning and transport issues with postgraduate planning students; evaluating a Neighbourhood Planning Frontrunner in Northumberland funded by the Catherine Cookson Trust; and working on the ESPON TANGO project.


David Bradley

I am a Principal Research Associate in the School of Geography Politics and Sociology. My main expertise lies in the evaluation of policies and programmes with a spatial impact. I have led more than 50 studies and advised a broad range of organisations such as Government Departments, Police Constabularies, Regional Development Agencies, local authorities, LSCs, and the EU. My other expertise includes: Public Sector relocation; Knowledge Intensive Business Services; Locational requirements and residential preferences of mobile professionals / home based business services; and Economic Impact Analysis. My current work includes evaluation of the Northumberland Strategic Investment Programme and evaluation of the Budget Holding Lead Professionals National Pilot

Professor Karen Corrigan

I am a Professor of Linguistics and English Language in the School of English Literature, Language and Linguistics. My research interests include dialectology, sociolinguistics and sociology of language, Celtic Englishes, corpus linguistics, history of English, discourse analysis. In particular key areas of research are: (1) the investigation of Irish-English from a socio-historical contact-linguistic perspective; (2) the analysis of written and spoken corpora of various kinds. My expertise in this area was initially stimulated by the unique nature of the historical database which I collected and analysed in my doctoral dissertation on South Armagh English; (3) Syntax and Variation: Reconciling the Biological and the Social; and (4) Modern (particularly, Ulster) Irish, Old English, Middle English and Early Modern English languages and texts. I have also done research on L2 English where the L1 was a member of the Indo-Aryan language family.


Gerard Corsane

I am acting Dean for International Business Development & Student Recruitment in the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences and a Senior Lecturer in Heritage, Museum & Gallery Studies in the International Centre for Cultural and Heritage Studies, School of Arts and Cultures. My research interests relate to my experiences in Africa and revolve around issues of identity construction and representation in colonial and postcolonial museum, heritage, public history and cultural tourism contexts. Linked to these, my research focuses on integrated heritage management, the value of intangible cultural heritage resources, stakeholder participatory processes, community benefits and sustainable development. I am particularly interested in the processes of management and interpretation of natural and cultural heritage resources by indigenous peoples.

Professor Peter Davis

I am Professor of Museology in the International Centre for Cultural and Heritage Studies, which I helped to found as a distinct unit in the newly-created School of Arts and Cultures during University re-organisation in 2001. I became the first Head of School of Arts and Cultures, relinquishing this position in 2005 to take up a part-time role at the University of Gothenburg, assisting in the development of museum and heritage programmes there until 2009. I play an active role in ICCHS‘ teaching and research activities, albeit in a part-time capacity. My research interests are varied, but I am especially interested in the ways that ‘small-scale’ or ‘everyday’ heritage, including natural heritage, contribute to a sense of belonging and a ‘sense of place’ for local communities.  For the last twelve years I have been involved in research on ecomuseums – community-centred heritage and museum projects that facilitate sustainable local development – and my monograph ‘Ecomuseums: a sense of place’ has recently (2011) been republished in an updated edition. Most recently I have worked with colleagues on an edited volume, ‘Making Sense of Place’, which will be published in the Heritage Matters Series by Boydell and Brewer in 2012.

Dr Cathrine Degnen

I studied Anthropology and French at the University of Connecticut and Université Laval in Quebec as an undergraduate, and then I completed a MA in Medical Anthropology at McGill University. This involved fieldwork in Labrador (Canada) on the topic of community healing in an Innu village. My doctoral work, also at McGill, was based on ethnographic fieldwork in South Yorkshire (UK) on everyday experiences of ageing. This work focused on the intersection of ageing, selfhood, senses of place, narrativity, social transformation and social memory. Both of these periods of work have allowed me to develop a research focus on how people navigate change and rupture in the social fabric. As a postdoc at the University of Manchester, I conducted a third period of fieldwork on the topic of public understandings of genetically modified food in the north of England. This work centred on everyday knowledge of food, of growing plants, and on people’s food biographies. During this fieldwork, I worked a great deal with gardeners (although not exclusively), and have become increasingly interested in the kinds of relations being forged that exceed the human/non-human binary. My research interests include: Medical anthropology; experiences of ageing and of social change; the ageing self, narrativity and temporality; public understandings of science, food, and new genetic technologies; social memory, places, and absences.

Professor Ali Madanipour

I have studied (MArch, PhD), practised, researched, and taught architecture, urban design and planning, winning design and research awards, and working with academic and municipal partners from around the world. My work has been translated into German, Mandarin, Japanese and Persian. I am a founding member of Global Urban Research Unit at the University of Newcastle. My research interests include: design, development and management of cities, in particular: the urban space, its social and psychological significance, processes that shape it, agencies of urban change, and implications of change for disadvantaged social groups and the environment.

Andrew Newman

I joined the University in 1992 to assist in setting up the MA in Museum Studies programme. Prior to this I had responsibility for the geological collections at the Great North Museum: Hancock, Newcastle upon Tyne, where I had worked since 1983. My current research interests follow two main themes. Firstly, the consumption of museums and galleries, particularly identity construction, viewed as a way of understanding the way people use cultural property in their everyday lives. A further theme is museum and gallery policy construction, particularly its relationship with wider social policy. I have been involved in a number of research projects funded by AHRC, ESRC, and MRC. The most recent of which explores the engagement of older people with the arts.

Professor John Tomaney

I am the Henry Daysh Professor of Regional Development Studies and Director of the Centre for Urban and Regional Development Studies (CURDS). My research concerns the relationship between territory, democracy, identity and justice, especially at the local and regional scales. I am interested in the sources and forms of local and regional development and the types of public intervention that support these and have a particular interest in the development of ‘old industrial regions’. I am also interested in the apparently global trend toward devolution and its impacts on the political economy of regional development and the relationship between democracy and development. In addition, I am interested in the formation and reproduction of local and regional identities and the political and cultural uses to which they are put. I have a longstanding interest in all aspects of the economic, social, cultural and political development of North East England. I have published books and articles and supervised PhDs in each of these fields.

Dr Jane Webster

I am an Historical Archaeologist in the widest sense of that term. My research crosses traditional frontiers (both temporal and disciplinary) but focuses on colonial material culture, from the early Roman Empire to the eighteenth century. My work explores the material culture of colonial subjects (including indigenous peoples and slaves), and examines the uses that these groups made of ‘foreign’ or imposed material things, as they created new identities in new circumstances. I work mainly in two fields: Romano-British iconography and the archaeology of slavery (looking at the latter in both in the Roman period and between 1660 and 1807). I am currently writing a book called Material Culture of the Middle Passage, looking at the social world of slave ships making the Atlantic sea crossing that took slaves to the New World during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.

Professor Diana Whaley

I am a Professor of Early Medieval Studies in the School of English Literature, Language and Linguistics. My research interests include Old Norse-Icelandic literature, especially skaldic poetry and sagas of poets, historical writings including sagas of kings, and sagas of bishops; onomastics, especially the place-names of Northern England. My current work includes: Skaldic Poetry of the Scandinavian Middle Ages: The Poetry of the Kings sagas (further information also here) . The overall aim of the project is to produce a new and authoritative modern edition, in electronic and print form, of the complete corpus of skaldic poetry. The new edition will make this valuable material available to an international and cross-disciplinary audience as well as to specialists in the field of Norse-Icelandic studies.

Maggie Roe

My main research interests lie in the field of large scale landscape planning and design, cultural landscapes, landscape ecology, sustainable landscapes, coastal landscape planning and human perception of, experience and relationship with the landscape. These interests are reflected in my publications and in work concerned with the implementation of the European Landscape Convention (ELC), with Green Infrastructure (GI) planning, and international work.

Dr Ian Thompson

I am a professionally qualified landscape architect and town-planner with a background in philosophy and an interest in landscape architecture theory and the history of the designed landscape. I worked in practice as a landscape architect for 13 years before taking up my first academic position in 1992. I have been engaged both physically and intellectually with the transformation of landscapes. In particular I worked on three of the British garden festivals – Glasgow, Gateshead and Ebbw Vale. As an academic I have studied the value systems inherent in landscape architectural interventions (my book, Ecology, Community and Delight (London, Spon 1999) won a Landscape Institute Award in 2001). My interest in garden history led to the publication of The Sun King’s Garden, an account of the creation of Louis XIV’s gardens at Versailles (London, Bloomsbury, 2006). I am a former editor of Landscape Research, a Routledge journal whose main areas of interest are environmental design (landscape architecture, architecture, planning) countryside management, visual arts, cultural geography, archaeology, ecology, history and literature. My most recent book is The English Lakes: A History published by Bloomsbury, London and New York, in 2010.


Dr Sam Turner

I am a senior lecturer in archaelogy and Director of Research for the School of Historical Studies, for which I also convene the Landscapes and Monuments research strand. I am editor of Medieval Settlement Research and the assistant editor of Landscape Research.  My research and teaching interests focus on the landscapes of Britain and Europe after the Roman period, and on medieval archaeology (particularly early medieval religion). Current and recent projects include: One Monastery in Two Places; Unlocking Historic Landscapes in the Eastern MediterraneanLandscape and Local CharacterMothecombe Project and Concealed Communities.

Dr Graeme Mearns

I joined CURDS in October 2010 to work as a social science research associate on the interdisciplinary Social Inclusion through the Digital Economy (SiDE) project based in the CultureLab. I am an urban and cultural geographer and he completed both my undergraduate and postgraduate degrees at the Manchester Metropolitan University, where from 2005, I was also an associate lecturer. I have also spent time as a research assistant in MISST (the Manchester Institute of Social and Spatial Transformations) and as a fieldworker for Vision Twentyone, a social research company that undertakes projects on behalf of public and private sector stakeholders. My PhD focused on the intersections of sexual, national and racial/ethnic identities through social media using an empirical case study of individuals with Turkish backgrounds in Germany. Specifically, this work shows how user-generated content on the Internet is produced and consumed in ways that reproduce and/or challenge rigid configurations of identity and how this manifests spatially. I specialise in qualitative methodologies, online research techniques and the design of ‘sensitive’ research and he is interested in feminist, queer and poststructuralist theories.


Professor Mark Shucksmith

I am a Professor of Planning and Director of Research and Consultancy in the School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape. My research interests include: poverty and social exclusion in rural areas, sustainable ruralism, rural development, agricultural policy, and affordable rural housing. I received an OBE in 2009 for services to rural development and to crofting. My recent books include ‘Comparing Rural Development – Continuity and Change in the Countryside of Western Europe’ (Ashgate 2008), ‘CAP and the Regions’ (CABI 2005), ‘Young People In Rural Europe’ (Ashgate 2004); and my recent reports How to Promote the Role of Youth in Rural Europe: report to European Parliament, Nov 2010 and European Development Opportunities for Rural Areas (EDORA) Andrew Copus et al, Sept 2010.

Dr Aron Mazel

Following a long career in research and museum management in South Africa, I moved to Newcastle University in the middle of 2002 to lead the ‘Northumberland Rock Art: Web Access to the Beckensall archive’ project. After the completion of this project, I took up a lecturing position at ICCHS in January 2005. My research interests include: The management and interpretation of cultural heritage; History of South African museums; The construction of hunter-gatherer archaeological history, including the integration of information derived from excavations with that from rock art (research area: Thukela basin, South Africa); The absolute and relative dating of rock art; Northumberland rock art; The portrayal of San hunter-gatherer and Black farming community archaeological history in South African schools textbooks and museums since the 1970s; and Changing interpretations of hunter-gatherer history

Professor Máire Cross

I am Professor of French Studies within the School of Modern Languages. As the leading scholar of Flora Tristan studies with the first annotated translation of her journal and the first book ever published on her correspondence, I have published and presented papers in French History and in Gender Studies in a wide international community. I have been President of the Association for the Study of Modern and Contemporary France (ASM&CF) since 2005 and I serve on the executive committee of the Association of University Professors and Heads of French.


profile picDr. Michael Richardson

Michael joined the school of Geography, Politics and Sociology as Teaching Fellow in Human Geography in September 2013. Before this he worked as a visiting lecturer and seminar leader in the department teaching across a range of social and cultural geography modules. Alongside his teaching, Michael has been funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) to conduct PhD research into Irish Masculinities on Tyneside (2010-2013). His PhD research explores the intersections of place, age and masculinity with men of Irish descent across three generations. He recently commissioned a play, ‘Under Us All’, a piece of verbatim theatre based on his interview transcripts which will tour the region in November 2013 as part of the ESRC Festival of Social Sciences (with support from Arts Council England). In June he talked to the Cultural Significance of Place research group about issues of ethics and anonymity involving research narratives and raised the possibility of theatre as a safe space for participant stories.

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