Sara as a research fellow as part of Centre for Urban and Regional Studies, at the University of Birmingham in May 2017 on the USE-IT! (Unlocking Social and Economic Innovation Together!) project. In this role, she engaged proactively with colleagues as well as partner institutions and local NGOs. She is also responsible for the management and administrative activities, including: leading, recruitment and delivery of Community researcher programme; project management, engaging with different partners, contributing to school/ department meetings and organising events; and preparing periodical reports and briefs. Through USE-IT! She contributed to knowledge transfer, enterprise, business and public engagement. For example, she recruited and trained more than 60 local people with no history in research to become community researchers in under a year. They are now being commissioned research projects and two of them have started on CURS MSc in Urban Regeneration and Planning. I have also invited the CRs to enhance the student experience by joining the final student project presentations and giving comments and feedback from a community perspective. I have also been committed to presenting my research findings to both staff and students at CURS where I was recently invited to deliver a lecture and workshop to 100 Urban Planning students.
Sara was awarded her PhD degree in July 2016 at the School of Environment, Education and Development SEED, University of Manchester upon being awarded the competitive SEED PhD studentship award in September 2012. Her PhD research developed a strong understanding of current conceptual debates within the urban planning policy, transport studies, social diversity and critical urban studies. In her PhD, she developed a Stakeholder driven decision-making model SDDM to reconcile the transport policy agenda with issues of social and economic sustainability through the stakeholder engagement planning that empowers end-users. The SDDM builds on understanding mechanisms and theories of change that can deliver sustainable outcomes. Her enthusiasm for knowledge transfer was proven when disseminating the findings of her research by presenting to audiences from policy and academic backgrounds in seminars and through participating in top level policy makers meetings encouraging the integration of poor and migrant communities. The outcomes of this timely research were transport policy development and creation of evaluation models based on stakeholder analysis. She has recently been granted a small fund award (£5000) from the Institute of Global Innovation Resilient Cities theme to further validate and evaluate the model developed during her PhD.
She has ten years of teaching and research experience, developing creative research methods of interpretation and analysis and applying them in her teaching. I have a solid track-record in publications not only proven by publications in top rated journals but also through positive feedback and comments I received in International conferences. For example, my paper ‘Streetscape Design Process in Constraint Environments’ was published in peer reviewed ‘Spaces & Flows: An International Journal of Urban & Extra Urban Studies’. In addition, I currently have papers under review in top tier journals such as Urban Studies, Spaces and Cultures, Transport Policy and Cities.