Power and Popular Politics

We bring our distinctive power-aware lens to research that identifies and supports the knowledge, action and leadership needed for better lives. We pioneer new methods and new ways of generating knowledge for change with communities, activists, academics and professional co-researchers from both the global North and South, using qualitative, ethnographic and action research.

Using a power lens on all our work, we examine popular forms of contestation. We’re particularly interested in contestation over rights, entitlements and justice that goes beyond institutionalised forms of participation.

Our Power and Popular Politics cluster focuses on:

Key contacts

Rosemary McGee

Power and Popular Politics Cluster Lead


+44 (0)1273 915738

Marjoke Oosterom

Power and Popular Politics Cluster Lead




Alex Shankland

Research Fellow

Chloe Skinner

Research fellow

Colin Anderson

Research Officer

Egidio Chaimite

Postgraduate Researcher

John Gaventa

Research Fellow and Director, Action for Empowerment and Accountability (A4EA) programme

Mariz Tadros

Director (CREID)

Marjoke Oosterom

Power and Popular Politics Cluster Lead

Patta Scott-Villiers

Research Fellow



POTENCIAR: Building partnerships for Inclusion, Participation and Action

POTENCIAR is a programme focused on addressing accountability and governance issues undermining the delivery of basic services in Mozambique. The programme takes an innovative research-led and knowledge-centred adaptive approach to achieving inclusive development outcomes via a series of...

Recent work


Backlash against student activists during #MeToo in Kolkata, India

Student politics in Kolkata is dominated by left-leaning organisations who look at the world in terms of ‘class struggle’ and claim to be supportive of all democratic movements – including women’s movements and anti-caste struggles. However, some scholars such as Arundhati Roy have...

9 January 2023