School of Geography

City, Diaspora and Migration

The City Centre logo

 Diaspora Cities: Imagining Calcutta in London, Tokyo and Jerusalem

Funded by The Leverhulme Trust, and based in the Department of Geography and The City Centre at Queen Mary, University of London, this research project proposes the idea of ‘diaspora cities’:

(i) to analyse the importance of the city rather than the nation and/or ‘homeland’ for many people living in diaspora;
(ii) to understand the importance of migration and diaspora within cities of origin as well as resettlement.

For more information see the Diaspora Cities research pages [new window]


 South Asian Migrants Making Home in the City

This research draws on oral histories to explore the experiences of displaced South Asians, who migrated from the Indian subcontinent and East Africa during the second half of the twentieth century. It examines boundary negotiation between the white majority and minority ethnic groups and shows how gender was fundamental to the experiences of migration and settlement. For more information see Dr Joanna Herbert's page.


 Placing Neighbourhood and the City in Diasporic Space: Anglo-Indian and Chinese communities in Calcutta, London and Toronto

This research focuses on the critical intersections of neighbourhood and community, mapping the socio-spatial histories of Anglo-Indians and Chinese in Calcutta from the early twentieth century to the present and positioning these histories in the diasporic imagination of these communities in London and Toronto. It explores the experiences of the two communities in neighbourhoods, analyses the significance of the locale and the role of these experiences in placing the city in diasporic imagination. For more information please contact Jayani Bonnerjee at


 Latin American transnational migration to Europe

There are a series of ongoing projects exploring the particular experiences of Latin American migrants in the cities of Europe currently being conducted by staff and postgraduate students at the City Centre: (see also Socio-economic exclusion and livelihoods).

Gender, political violence and peace-building among Colombians in Europe
This ESRC-funded research examines how Colombians in the UK (London) and Spain (Barcelona and Madrid) are involved in political activities focusing on peace-building in their home country. In particular it considers the role of gender and civil society organisations in transnational political processes. For more information contact Anastasia Bermudez Torres on:

Transnational practices and identity among Colombian migrants in London
This Queen Mary-funded research examines the impact that the development of transnational spaces within the city has on the identity politics of Colombian migrants in London. It considers their negotiation of belonging and identity through practices in spaces that connect the UK and Latin America. For more information contact Juan Cock on

Transnational family strategies among Ecuadorian domestic workers in Madrid, Spain
This Queen Mary-funded research (jointly supervised with the Centre for the Study of Migration) examines the strategies used by Ecuadorian domestic workers to sustain a family life transnationally both in Spain and in Ecuador. It focuses particularly on the functioning of motherhood, fatherhood, family budgeting and transnational socialization and rearing of children. For more information contact Cristen Davalos on:



 Global Cities at Work: migrant workers in low paid employment in London

This ESRC-funded project aims to advance academic understanding about the importance of migrant labour in global cities; produce the first comprehensive empirical evidence about the role and experiences of migrant workers in low-paid employment in London; and highlight the implications for public policy. For more information, see