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School of Geography

The Team

 Meet the team:

Kavita Datta is leading the Connecting During Covid-19 project. She is Professor of Development Geography in the School of Geography, and Director of the Centre for the Study of Migration, at Queen Mary. Her research interests are on transnational migration, financialisation and migrants financial practices, with a particular focus on migrants’ everyday remittance, debt, inheritance and charitable practices; the financialization of remittance intermediaries and the digitisation of remittance sending. She is the author of Migrants and their Money: Surviving Financial Exclusion in London (Polity Press: Bristol).  Her current and past projects are funded by the UKRI ESRC, AHRC, BBSRC, GCRF, and the Leverhulme Trust.    


Anna Lindley is a co-Investigator on Connecting During Covid-19. She is a Senior Lecturer in Development Studies at SOAS, University of London. Her research focuses on global migration dynamics, politics and experiences. In particular, she has worked on displacement and refugee issues, transnationalism and remittances, and immigration status precarity. Earlier work focused primarily on Somali mobilities within and beyond Africa. Recent projects have explored access to justice and civic mobilization around immigration detention in the UK. She is the author of The Early Morning Phone Call: Somali Refugees’ Remittances (Berghahn) and editor of Crisis and Migration: Critical Perspectives (Routledge). 


Elaine Chase is Associate Professor in Education, Health Promotion and International Development at UCL Institute of Education.  Her teaching, research and writing explore the sociological dimensions of health, wellbeing and rights of individuals and communities most likely to experience marginalisation and exclusion.  Other current and recent research focuses on the wellbeing outcomes of unaccompanied migrant young people becoming ‘adult’ in the UK: educational wellbeing in contexts of mass displacement; the impact of deportations on the wellbeing of migrant communities in Mexico, Guatemala and the USA; and how COVID-19 affects access to legal care and support for unaccompanied children and young people. 


Laura Hammond is Professor of Development Studies at SOAS University of London. She is also Challenge Leader in Security, Protracted Conflict, Refugees and Forced Displacement for the Global Challenges Research Fund, head of the London International Development Centre-Migration Leadership Team, and Team Leader of the EU Trust Fund’s Research and Evidence Facility on migration and conflict in the Horn of Africa. She has been conducting research on refugees, conflict, food security, migration and diasporas in and from the Horn of Africa since the early 1990s. She is the author of This Place Will Become Home: Refugee Repatriation to Ethiopia (Cornell University Press: 2004), editor of Researching Violence in Africa: Ethical and Methodological Challenges [Brill 2011] and many book chapters and journal articles.

Saliha Majeed-Hajaj has previously worked in a caseworker capacity supporting refugee and asylum-seeking children build more hopeful futures through education. Her former roles in academia have seen her explore forced eviction, examine border controls and develop accessible public health resources for migrant communities. Outside of work Saliha is a co-founder of Migration Collective, an organisation which hosts events and activities that tackle the intersection of art, academia and action in order to challenge the mainstream rhetoric on migration. She has an MSc in Migration, Mobility & Development from SOAS and tweets @S_MHajaj. 


Gabriela Loureiro is a doctoral researcher and journalist primarily interested in the intersections of gender, sexuality, race, migration and decoloniality. Her PhD examines embodied emotions and collective struggle in digital activism in Brazil and her published work focuses on contemporary forms of feminist activism. She holds an MA in Gender Studies from the University of Leeds and has taught and supervised students in the Media department at UWL. Prior to academia, she has worked as a journalist at the BBC and in various outlets in Brazil, including Globo, The Huffington Post and Abril Group. 


Kaltun is a Research Associate in the School of Geography at Queen Mary University of London. For the last seven years, she has worked in communications, research and policy making for a number of non-profit organisations, healthcare institutions and government departments. In the last six months, she assisted the Office for National Statistics as an Adviser to the Somali community where she conducted focus groups with community leaders with the purpose of increasing Census awareness and participation. Prior to this, she has undertaken a Graduate Diploma in Law to build on previous experiences and gain a deeper understanding of research and legal analysis. She has used her knowledge to develop non-profit professionals on media and communications law in relation to GDPR regulations. This has also included guidance on managing multi-lingual press relations for a number of Somali charities and non-profits and conducting desk-based research on their behalf.

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