Amory Building, University of Exeter, Rennes Drive, Exeter, EX4 4RJ , UK
Broad research specialisms
Migration and integration, refugees and asylum.
BA Sociology, University of Mannheim (Germany)
MA Sociology and Social Research, Newcastle University (UK)
I graduated in sociology from the University of Mannheim (Germany) in 2014 and subsequently successfully completed a Master’s programme in Sociology and Social Research at Newcastle University (2014-2015).
My MA thesis examined definitions of the ‘refugee’ based on the case of Germany’s so-called Temporary Humanitarian Admission Programmes (THAP) for Syrian refugees set up between 2013 and 2015. Two publications developed out of this work (with movements and the German Bundeszentrale fuer politische Bildung).
From 2016 to 2018 I worked as an evaluator at the German Institute for Development Evaluation in Bonn, Germany, as part of the team evaluating the German development volunteer service ‘weltwaerts’ (evaluation report).
All through my BA and MA studies as well as my work experience, I have developed and sustained an interest in issues around migration, asylum, citizenship and integration, looking in particular at the ways in which legal provisions play out in practice.
I joined the University of Exeter in September 2018 to embark on a PhD investigating the training of judges who work in refugee status determination.
Refugee and asylum law, judicial training, adult education, mixed methods research
My PhD project investigates the training of judges who work in refugee status determination (RSD).
It aims at 1) mapping the status quo of available judicial training relating to refugee status determination, 2) analysing the contents of trainings, and 3) capturing participants’ and trainers’ views on training needs, modalities, contents, and access barriers. The overall objective is to provide pointers for improving the training for judges working in refugee status determination. Training in this particular area of law is vital as judges are both “corrective” to first-instance asylum decisions and “guarantor” for the correct application of international and national law.
The project will implement a comparative mixed methods approach. The purpose is to arrive at a well rounded picture of RSD training availability, contents, participants, and perceptions, in different jurisdictions (e.g., England, Germany). The methodology combines quantitative and qualitative elements, to both trace the concepts conveyed through training (text mining), and to capture relevant individuals’ views and experiences of training (observation, interviews/ focus groups). Desk research will provide an overview of training related to refugee status determination in the jurisdiction(s) studied. The novelty in the proposed approach lies in making a new field fruitful for text mining and mixed methods analysis.