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School of English and Drama


The Drama Department is a leading centre of research in drama, theatre, and performance studies.

Across the Department, our research shares a spirit of intellectual and creative adventurous enquiry and an ethical commitment to social justice. Whether making practice- or text-based research, we consistently investigate the cultural politics of performance, aiming to enhance political and cultural understanding of the place of theatre and performance in social life. We concentrate on four main – but overlapping – strands of research enquiry, focusing on cultural histories of performance, transnational performance, live art, and socially engaged and applied performance.

In the latest national research assessment exercise (REF 2014), QMUL Drama was the top-ranked Drama Department in the UK for the quality of our research. 69% of the Drama Department’s research was judged ‘world-leading’ and 93% was ‘internationally excellent’ or better. The quality of both our research impact and our research environment was evaluated as 100% ‘world-leading’. We also placed first in the quality rankings in both Research Fortnight and the Times Higher Education, 2014.

Our profile has strengthened since the last UK research quality audit in 2008, when 50% of our research was judged ‘world-leading’ and 90% ‘internationally excellent’ or better (RAE 2008). Since then, we have expanded our PhD programme; recruited dynamic new staff, including several early career researchers; developed exciting new partnerships with policy makers, arts organizations and others; and produced new world-leading practice- and text-based research.

Drama’s research webpages illustrate our very active research culture, offering detail on: activity in our four main research areas; research partners and collaborations; research events, including conferences and festivals; media and public appearances; postdoctoral fellows; research awards; and recent publications and performances and other practice-based research.