My research interests include class and gender inequalities in classical music, character education and policy networks, and staff sexual misconduct in higher education. The best way to follow my ongoing work is on twitter, and on my personal blog as well as The 1752 Group blog.
I am a co-founder of The 1752 Group, a lobby group and consultancy set up to address the issue of staff-student sexual harassment in higher education http://www.1752group.com/. We worked with the National Union of Students on a national survey examining students' perceptions of professional boundaries in higher education and experiences of sexual misconduct from academic staff, published in a report as 'Power in the Academy'. On behalf of The 1752 Group I was lead author on the report 'Silencing Students' published in Sept 2018. You can read an academic article on our activism here. I am a regular media commentator on issues related to this work for publications including The Guardian, the BBC, and Nature.
My monograph on classical music, class and gender, entitled 'Class, Control, and Classical Music' was published in July 2019 with Oxford University Press. Out of this research, I have also published an article on the gendered authority of the conductor in The Sociological Review, and I made a short film based on this article together with the National Youth Choir of Great Britain. I have also published a co-authored article with Christina Scharff, was published in Cultural Sociology, looking at the unspoken ways in which classical music is valued over other genres. I was a guest on BBC Radio 4's sociology programme, Thinking Allowed, in December 2017, discussing this research. I have a book chapter published in The Classical Music Industry edited by Julia Haferkorn and Chris Dromey, looking at how gender and class shape young people's pathways through classical music, and have published a critical discussion of El Sistema-inspired music education programmes in the UK, in a special issue of the Journal of Action, Criticism and Theory for Music Education. I am on the editorial board of the Journal of Cultural Analysis and Social Change.
At the University of Portsmouth, I lead the working group for Organisation and Culture within the university's Athena Swan self-assessment team. I also sit on the Speak Up, Step Up working group which is working on sexual harassment, bullying and hate crime across the university. My teaching responsibilities include unit coordination for the first year unit Class, Inequality and the Lifecourse. I also contribute to teaching on the second year unit, Sociology of the Body, and teach on first year units Studying Society and Research Design and Analysis. I teach sociology of music through film on first year unit Observing Society.
Before starting at the University of Portsmouth, I worked with Jonathan Gross and Nick Wilson on a project looking at everyday creativity in the UK. This involved an evaluation of the BBC campaign 'Get Creative', launched in February 2015, as well as looking at the ways in which people in Britain engage in creative and cultural practices. The report of this work was published as 'Towards Cultural Democracy' in 2017. Prior to this I completed a BA and M.Phil in social and political sciences at Cambridge, working with Professor Georgina Born on cultures of classical music as well as a masters dissertation on political music in the UK, and a PhD in sociology at Goldsmiths working with Les Back and Bev Skeggs. I have taught at the University of Cambridge, Goldsmiths College, and Anglia Ruskin University.
My previous career was as a pianist and cellist in New Zealand and Scotland. My portfolio of work involved performing with ensembles such as the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, teaching at the University of Strathclyde, and education workshops for Scottish Opera.