Rachel Mulhall

School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences
Doctoral Researcher

Contact details

School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Title of PhD: Manufacturing change: competitiveness and adjustment through evolving production relationships

Supervisors: Professor John Bryson, Professor Michael Taylor

Rachel is undertaking doctoral research into the adjustment practices of metal manufacturing firms in the West Midlands. The research project has engaged with local businesses through qualitative interviews and events to understand how firms react to challenges such as the global recession, climate change and globalization.


2008 MSc Applied Meteorology & Climatology (University of Birmingham)

2007 BSc Geography (University of Birmingham)


Rachel has a cross-disciplinary background in physical and human geography from her time at the University of Birmingham. She has been active in maintaining an interdisciplinary approach to her current research project through ‘cross-over’ methodologies.


The firm and the value chain, the manufacturing sector, sustainability and adjustment

Research group

Society, economy and environment

Other activities

Another research interest of Rachel’s is methodological training for early career researchers and research students, for which she has co-founded a research group with two fellow University of Birmingham colleagues. Through the research group, Start2Finish, Rachel has co-organised several workshops and sessions at international conferences, as well as an interactive website with a working paper series.


Conference presentations

2010 Association of American Geographers Annual Conference, The Energy Hot Potato: Organizational Survival in a Mature Manufacturing Sector, Washington.

2010 RGS-IBG Annual International Conference, Organisational Resilience in an Age of Climatic & Financial stress: the case of a Mature manufacturing Industry, London.

2011 RGS-IBG Annual International Conference, Session: Start2Finish: Advancing the field of Qualitative Methodologies Research , London. See Start2Finish Qualitative Methodologies Research Group website.

Publications in progress

Mulhall & Bryson, (In Prep) The Energy Hot Potato and Governance of Value Chains: Power, Risk and Organizational Adjustment in Intermediate Manufacturing Firms

Hales, Mulhall, Bryson, Begley & Ronayne, (In Prep) Gatekeepers, Flattery and Accessing Corporate Elites: A Framework to Guide Research Design