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School of Politics and International Relations

Brexit Brits Abroad: A conversation with Professor Karen O'Reilly and Dr Michaela Benson

When: Tuesday, February 16, 2021, 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM
Where: Zoom Webinar

Mobile People: Mobility as a way of life is a Leverhulme Trust Doctoral Scholarship programme at Queen Mary University of London, Institute for Humanities and Social Sciences and School of Politics and International Relations.   

Leverhulme Trust Doctoral Scholars Vikki Barry Brown and Connie Thomas speak with Professor Karen O'Reilly and Dr Michaela Benson about their collaborative project, 'BrExpats: Freedom of Movement, Citizenship and Brexit in the lives of Britons living in the EU-27', and its digital iteration 'Brexit Brits Abroad'. The initial discussion focusses on the methodology of the project, namely its expansive qualitative research and sociological grounding. We discuss the unique materiality of the project, and the benefit of presenting research digitally in a way that both disseminates their findings while also allowing the audience to draw their own conclusions. We also talk about the challenges and unanticipated discoveries Karen and Michaela faced while conducting their research, particularly with regards to class, labour and belonging. Lastly, we discuss the lifespan of the project, from its inception after the EU referendum in 2016 through to the 'post-Brexit' era, and its continuing relevance to research on mobility, belonging and citizenship. For the live seminar, we will be joined by panellists Atlanta Neudorf, Katherine Phipps and Jesse Connuck to discuss their reflections on the interview, and the project more broadly.   

Dr Michaela Benson is a Reader in Sociology at Goldsmiths, University of London. She is internationally renowned for her work on lifestyle migration, and has published extensively on identity, citizenship and belonging. Professor Karen O‚ÄôReilly is an Emeritus Professor of Sociology at Loughborough University, and an independent Research Academic. She is key scholar of lifestyle migration and has written extensively on the intersection of class and mobility. Building on their career-long interests in British citizens living overseas, Michaela and Karen collaborated on a Changing Europe funded research project, 'BrExpats: Freedom of Movement, Citizenship and Brexit in the lives of Britons living in the EU-27'. 

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