Who we are

Core Academic Staff   

Professor Kalwant Bhopal

Professor of Education and Social Justice, Director of the Centre for Research in Race & Education (CRRE) and BAME Academic Lead

Kalwant’s research focuses on the achievements and experiences of minority ethnic groups in education. She has conducted research on exploring discourses of identity and intersectionality examining the lives of Black minority ethnic groups as well as examining the marginal position of Gypsies and Travellers. Her research specifically explores how processes of racism, exclusion and marginalisation operate in predominantly White spaces with a focus on social justice and inclusion. 

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Telephone +44 (0)121 415 8241
Email k.bhopal@bham.ac.uk

Dr Claire E. Crawford


Claire joined the School of Education in September 2016 as a BRIDGE Research Fellow within the Centre for Research in Race and Education (CRRE). She is a PGCE qualified educator with several years teaching experience at both further and higher education levels.

Her ESRC funded PhD research focused on the critical examination of education policy, standardised testing data, inequity of opportunity, and educational outcomes by race and ethnicity (as intersected with gender, sexuality, class, and dis/ability).

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Telephone +44 (0)121 414 3474
Email c.e.crawford@bham.ac.uk

Dr Reza Gholami

Reader in Sociology of Education
Deputy Director of the Centre for Research in Race and Education (CRRE).

Reza Gholami’s research focuses on studying non-formal educational settings both in the cultural/voluntary sector and within diasporic communities helps to counter divisive/racist/Islamophobic discourses whilst shedding light on innovative educational practices that can improve relations and lead to better outcomes. His research also contributes to debates around Islamophobia and its ongoing societal and educational implications, for example through counter-extremism policies such as the UK’s ‘PREVENT’ policy.

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Telephone +44 (0)121 414 2638
Email r.gholami@bham.ac.uk

Professor David Gillborn

Emeritus Professor of Critical Race Studies, editor-in-chief of the journal Race Ethnicity and Education

David is Professor of Critical Race Studies, editor-in-chief of the journal Race Ethnicity and Education

David’s research focuses on race inequalities in education, especially the role of racism as a changing and complex characteristic of the system. 

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Email d.gillborn@bham.ac.uk

Dr Sarah Gillborn

Lecturer in Psychology

As a critical psychologist, Sarah Gillborn uses predominantly qualitative methodologies to research racism and marginalisation. Drawing on feminist and anti-racist theory, Sarah’s research focuses on analyses of discourse and voice, particularly in relation to public policy, in order to understand how social issues are officially constructed and re/negotiated by those implicated by them. In addition, Sarah’s work takes a critical look at the role of psychology as a discipline in reproducing and challenging racism through research, knowledge, and practice.

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Email s.gillborn@bham.ac.uk

Dr Saba Hussain

Assistant Professor in Education Studies

Saba is a feminist Sociologist of Education with a particular interest in theorizations of social justice, citizenship, power and resistance in postcolonial contexts. Shaped by her own location as a transnational scholar, she has an inter-disciplinary research portfolio working across the global North and South.

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Telephone +44 (0)121 414 4849

Dr Karl Kitching

Reader in Education Policy

Karl Kitching's research focuses on children's and young people's experiences of racism and religious exclusion, and how these interplay with issues of gender, sexuality and class inequality. He examines how these issues are linked to policy and historical processes, through the use of post-structural, new materialist, critical race and postcolonial frameworks. His book Childhood, Religion and School Injustice (2020) introduces a critical postsecular lens to explain how secular-religious discourses in schools and in education policy can reproduce or counter multiple inequalities.

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Email k.kitching@bham.ac.uk

Dr Dina Kiwan

Reader in Comparative Education
Head of Department of Education and Social Justice and School International Lead

Dina Kiwan is Professor of Comparative Education. Her research programme focuses on citizenship and inclusion, and is interdisciplinary and comparative in scope. Her interests centre around sociological and politico-philosophical examinations of inclusive citizenship through the lens of education policy, naturalization policy and migration policy, in particular in the context of pluralist / multicultural societies, and also societies in conflict. She is currently PI for a GCRF Global Challenges Network Plus Programme Disability Under Siege with partners in Jordan, Lebanon and Palestine. She is also a member of the government's Migration Advisory Committee 

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Telephone +44 (0)121 414 6734
Email d.j.kiwan@bham.ac.uk

Dr Valentina Migliarini

Assistant Professor in Education Studies 

Valentina Migliarini’s research focuses on increasing access to equitable education for students from multiply-marginalised communities, specifically disabled students from migrant and forced migrant backgrounds, in secondary education.

Valentina is at the forefront of researchers using the Disability Critical Race Theory in Education (DisCrit) framework as an intersectional lens to examine inclusive policies and practices in education systems in Europe and in the United States. Through her research agenda, she troubles mainstream conceptualisations of inclusion, highlighting how these reproduce micro-exclusions for students living at the intersections of multiple forms of oppression.

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Email v.migliarini@bham.ac.uk

Professor Deborah Youdell

Head of the School of Education
Professor of Sociology of Education

Deborah's work is at the forefront of the developing field of biosocial education, which brings emerging knowledge in the new biological sciences together with social science accounts of education to generate new insights into learning and the learner.

Her latest line of research intersects with Deborah’s longstanding concern with how inequalities are connected to subjectivities, everyday practices, pedagogy, institutional processes and policy. Deborah’s research has spanned issues of race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, religion, social class, ability and disability and has been underpinned by engagements with post-structural thinking about power, the subject, space, and the political.   

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Telephone +44 (0) 121 414 4840
Email d.youdell@bham.ac.uk