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Members of The Network are part of a thriving research community working across disciplines and often in collaboration with other universities and external partners. Here is a selection of ongoing and completed research projects.


ESRC Standard Grant “Labour mobility in transition: a multi-actor study of the re-regulation of migrant work in ‘low-skilled’ sectors PI Gabriella Alberti, Co-Is:Chris Forde, Jo Cutter, Zinovijus Ciupijus, Ioulia Bessa, Elena Morganti, Gary Graham  Leeds University Business School, School of Transport/ Food studies (Starting date October 2021)

Ethnic Population Projections undertaken by Nick Lomax and team of scholars at the School of Geography.

Partnerships For Equity And Inclusion project by Ghazala Mir (PI) and colleagues is looking at migrant workers in Vietnam and attention to equity in public services across a range of other contexts.

Professor Adrian Favell is PI on the large scale Northern Exposure project (2019-2021), funded by the ESRC “UK in a Changing Europe” programme, which looks at tensions around migration, race, nation and political representation in four northern localities in the period since Brexit.

ESRC funded research ‘Feeding the Nation: Seasonal Migrant Workers and Food Security during the COVID-19 Pandemic’ by Roxana Barbulescu (PI, University of Leeds) and Carlos Vargas-Silva (University of Oxford). The project, running 2020 – 2022, explores the role seasonal migrant workers and farmers in pandemic times, their recruitment and working practices in situations of international travel restrictions and re-imagined post-Brexit immigration.

ESRC funded research ‘Understanding the role of faith-based organisations in anti-trafficking’. Principle Investigator Hannah Lewis (University of Sheffield), Co-Investigator Louise Waite, Co-Investigator Emma Tomalin (University of Leeds). This research, beginning in April 2017 and running until April 2021, is at the forefront of providing a deeper understanding of changes to the welfare state in neoliberal capitalist societies and the role of religion in the public life of secular societies by exploring how faith shapes anti-trafficking responses.

“Digital Welfare” project by Andy Turner and Stuart Hopkinson. Amongst other things it explored residential movements of the benefit claiming population in Leeds Local Authority District from 2008 to present. The ‘final report’ of the most recent phase of funding is in the process of being published.

“Migration, Development and Global Transformations (MDGT)” WUN research development fund (RDF) developed by Gabriella Alberti and Chris Forde as part of the University of Leeds Migration Research Network (PI Ann Singleton, Bristol University).

Dr Sam Durrant runs a network of weekly reading groups for local refugees and asylum seekers. The groups draw on the empathic dynamics of group reading in order to foster a sense of community, build self-confidence and improve language skills. See more at and the Reading with Refugees and Asylum Seekers Leeds Facebook group.

The Regulation of Migration during COVID-19 in UK, Australia and China (World Universities Network project, with University of Western Australia and Renmin University of China (Chris Forde, Zyama Ciupijus, Rosa Mas Giralt, Li Sun and Jiachen Shi).

Labour mobility in transition: a multi-actor study of the re-regulation of migrant work in ‘low-skilled’ sectors’ (Gabriella Alberti (PI), Ioulia Bessa, Zyama Ciupijus, Jo Cutter, Chris Forde, Gary Graham and Elenora Morganti)

Concluded projects, report and working papers:

Migration and Covid-19. Alberti, G. Bessa, I. Ciupijus, Z. Cutter, J. Forde, C., Roberts, M. 2020 The coronavirus pandemic and the post-Brexit regulation of migration. CERIC Briefing Paper

An evaluation of the Migrant Access Plus Project for Leeds City Council, looking at the integration of migrants in local communities (Gabriella Alberti, Chris Forde, Louise Warwick Booth). Final report here.

Free movement, social rights and internal market law in the EU. (Forde, C., Alberti, G. and Oliver, E. (2015) EU Social and Labour Rights and EU Internal Market Law: STUDY for the EMPL Committee, Employment And Social Affairs, European Parliament).Final report for the European Parliament available here.

Translation and translanguaging: Investigating linguistic and cultural transformations in superdiverse wards in four UK cities (TLANG) (2014-2018) (AHRC). Dr James Simpson (Language Education), Mike Baynham, John Callaghan, Jolana Hanusova, PGR student Jess Bradley and visiting researcher Emilee Moore (School of Education).

From exploitation as a problem to migration as an opportunity, Report, University of Leeds by Gabriella Alberti, Zinovijus Ciupijus, Chris Forde, Hannah Lewis, Robert MacKenzie,  Rosa Mas Giralt , Louise Waite (2015) Full report available here.

Summary of Roundtable Event: Migration: challenging the debate and developing a positive agenda around migration in the Yorkshire region, published by University of Leeds (by Gabriella Alberti, Zinovijus Ciupijus, Chris Forde, Hannah Lewis, Robert MacKenzie,  Rosa Mas Giralt , Louise Waite (2015). Full report available here.

‘Migration Worker Project: The experiences of migrants in Barnsley’ (Forde., C. Mackenzie, R. and Ciupijus, Z.) December 2009-April 2010. Full report here.