SCDTP’s 2023/24 Cohort of Postdoctoral Fellows

If you are looking to apply to join our 2023/24 cohort of Postdoctoral Fellows please follow the link which will take you to our Postdoc Fellowship Scheme page.


We are pleased to welcome our latest cohort of ESRC funded Postdoctoral Fellows who will be with us until the end of the 2021/22 Academic Year.




David Alemna

David Alemna is an ESRC Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Portsmouth. His research focuses on the internationalization of public policy as well as the application of heterodox research methods in the assessment of public policy impacts. As part of his fellowship, David would advance the development of an innovative quantitative mixed method approach (Dynamic Pattern Synthesis – DPS) through the production of journal publications and conference presentations. David would also be undertaking further training in advanced quantitative research methods and teach the broader application of the DPS method.



Louise Palmour

Louise will undertake her ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Department of Modern Languages and Linguistics at the University of Southampton. Her research offers theoretically and empirically founded understandings of oral presentation assessment practices in English-medium Higher Education institutions. The project documents how these communicative performances are produced and assessed on English for Academic Purposes courses and degree programmes in UK universities. In doing so, the research sheds light on key validity and sociolinguistic justice implications of decision making in these assessment contexts. As part of the fellowship, Louise will continue to share findings from her PhD project with researchers, practitioners and students. She will also conduct further qualitative fieldwork and work on a book-length manuscript.


Daria Platonova

Daria is an Economic and Social Research Council postdoctoral fellow at the University of Portsmouth. Her research focuses on the comparison between the antebellum United States and Ukraine; regimes of Bashar Al-Assad in Syria and Viktor Yanukovych in Ukraine, and Ukraine’s decentralisation reform. Daria is a former PhD student at King’s College London.



Will Stronge

Will is based at the University of Brighton. His work focuses on models of basic income in the context of contemporary debates around social security policy and welfare reform. His PhD focused on new approaches to understanding hegemony and its relationship to modern labour markets and workplaces. Specific focus was placed on the relationship between the policies and infrastructures of unemployment on the one hand, and those of the formal labour market on the other. His interest in the nature of policy writing, its role within political practice, the UK policy landscape and the ongoing political debates around austerity, led him to create important connections to those working within the field of policy.

His work with the Autonomy think tank has enabled him to transition from humanities-based research to the field of policy. He has worked with independent welfare consultants, co-founders of the Basic Income Earth Network and advisors to MPs in order to deliver impactful policy interventions. During the fellowship, he will bring key stakeholders into conversation, generate a number of textual outputs build new collaborative potentials around the issue of welfare policy reform.



Sien van der Plank

Sien van der Plank is an ESRC Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Southampton. During the fellowship, Sien will be based in the Department of Sociology, Social Policy and Criminology. Her PhD analysed policy, organisational and household perspectives of coastal flood risk management in England. Her research examines community and household adaptation to environmental change including climate change and hazards, with a particular focus on adaptive capacity, motivation, and responsibility. In this fellowship year, Sien will prepare academic journal articles from her PhD, as well as engage with community, policy and coastal management stakeholders on the English South Coast to explore opportunities for transformational adaptation, and the role of motivation, responsibility and capacity in that process.



Gemma Williams

Gemma Williams is an ESRC Postdoctoral Fellow in Social Policy, based at the University of Brighton in the Centre for Resilience and Social Justice. Gemma is also an Associate with the National Development Team for Inclusion as part of the autism team developing policy-related reports focused on improving autistic wellbeing within health and social care services.

Her fellowship extends her doctoral work which investigated the breakdowns in communication between autistic and non-autistic speakers from the perspective of cognitive linguistics. Taking the ‘double empathy problem’ as a starting point, communication breakdowns are framed as a two-way responsiblity shared between two different individuals, rather than as an autistic deficit in social communication.

During the fellowship year, Gemma will work on the dissemination of her work through publications and will develop its impact on policymaking across three key outputs. The first will be to work co-productively with stakeholder groups to develop a set of recommendations for best practice and policy around communication between autistic and non-autistic speakers in health and social care settings. The second output will be a co-produced series of short videos sharing the empirical findings from her PhD research, illustrated and animated by local autistic artists, supported by Figment Arts. The final output will be a monograph, written for a general readership, that presents the novel theoretical contributions from her PhD research with a focus on applying this to social policy and practice.

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