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School of Politics and International Relations

Dr Alvina Hoffmann, BA, King’s College London; MSc, LSE; MA, Sciences Po Paris; PhD, King’s College London.


Lecturer in International Security

Room Number: ArtsOne, Room 2.26
Twitter: @AlvinaHoffm


Alvina Hoffmann joined Queen Mary in 2022 after teaching at King’s College London where she completed her PhD in 2021. She is an interdisciplinary researcher in International Political Sociology with interests in transnational human rights struggles, the politics of (in)security, biographical methods and power elites. She has been contributing to a new research agenda which problematises intelligence studies. Currently, she is working on her first monograph on human rights elites as spokespersons of the universal.

Undergraduate Teaching

POL256 – War in World Politics

POL258 – The International Politics of Security


Postgraduate Teaching

POLM054 War and International Security


Research Interests:

Alvina is currently writing a monograph on human rights elites in world politics. The book traces the social, political and legal mechanisms that authorise actors to speak as spokespersons of the ‘universal‘. This analysis is centred on UN special rapporteurs, a body of independent human rights experts, in the context of human rights struggles in annexed Crimea, Indigenous struggles for human rights in Sápmi and counter-terrorism policy.

She has also contributed to a new research agenda which problematises intelligence studies through transdisciplinary tools to recast intelligence as a social phenomenon. Her work focuses on human rights claims of Internet users against intrusive surveillance practices and, recently, ‘publicity’ in intelligence practice through open-source intelligence actors such as Bellingcat.

She is developing a new project on contemporary transformations of democracy through attacks on human rights law(yers) and the expansion of national security logics.

Examples of research funding:

Full doctoral ESRC studentship, London Interdisciplinary Social Science Doctoral Training Partnership (LISS DTP, 2017-2021)



Alvina Hoffmann (2023) 'What makes a spokesperson? Delegation and symbolic power in Crimea' European Journal of International Relations OnlineFirst

Jorg Kustermans, Ted Svensson, Julia Costa López, Tracey Blasenheim and Alvina Hoffmann (2022) Ritual and authority in world politics Cambridge Review of International Affairs 35(1): 2-30.

Alvina Hoffmann (2021) 'The transnational and the international: from critique of statism to transversal lines’ Cambridge Review of International Affairs OnlineFirst

Hager Ben Jaffel, Alvina Hoffmann, Oliver Kearns & Sebastian Larsson (2020) ‘Collective Discussion: Toward Critical Approaches to Intelligence as a Social Phenomenon’ International Political Sociology 14(3) pp. 323-344.

Book Chapters

Alvina Hoffmann (2022) ‘Legal imaginaries of the Internet against intelligence services: Towards universal human rights for Internet users?’ in Hager Ben Jaffel & Sebastian Larsson (eds.) Critical Approaches to Intelligence Studies, Abingdon: Routledge.

Other publications 

Alvina Hoffmann (2022) ‘Book Review: Transnational Lawmaking Coalitions for Human Rights’ Global Policy Link

Alvina Hoffmann (2022) ‘Ukraine: what anti-war protesters in Russia risk by speaking out‘ The Conversation Link

Alvina Hoffmann (2019) ‘‘Review: Emma Mc Cluskey (2019) From Righteousness to Far Right: An Anthropological Rethinking of Critical Security Studies’ e-International Relations Link

Alvina Hoffmann (2019) ‘Colonial Lives of Legality and Possibilities for Resistance?’ The Disorder of Things Link

Alvina Hoffmann (2018) ‘Urban Warfare and International Humanitarian Law’ Oxford Research Group Link


I welcome PhD proposals on topics related to contemporary transformations of (in)security, democracy and human rights; expertise, elites and authority in international politics; socio-legal studies and international political sociology. 

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