Skip to main content Skip to navigation

Emily Dunford

Emily Dunford. She has brown hair and glasses and is standing by a wall in a park.
Graduate Teaching Assistant and PhD Researcher

Email: opens in a new window

Pronouns: She/Her

Listen to me pronounce my name here

About Me

Emily began her PhD in April 2019, researching Coventry, UK City of Culture 2021. She is funded by the University through the Higher Education Industrial Fund (HEIF). Prior to beginning her PhD, Emily worked on the University’s Student Personalised Information Programme Student Personalised Information programme, and, in 2017-18, was Warwick Students’ Union’s Warwick Students’ Union’s full-time Postgraduate Officer. She has experience in UK Higher Education policy and pedagogical development.

Research interests

Emily’s research focuses on Coventry, UK City of Culture 2021.Link opens in a new window

Coventry 2021 has, so far, portrayed itself as aiming to create an inclusive year for culture change with a transformative legacy. Emily’s research project stems from the idea that the arts and culture are often presented as offering an incubator for rethinking established socio-political norms. At the same time, the arts can be exclusionary for many people. Her project explores the extent to which the City of Culture provides a site for experimenting with alternatives to the culturally-specific context in which the mega-event is located.

Emily is supervised by Professor Nadine Holdsworth and Dr Michael Pigott.

Coventry 2021 is anticipated to have an enormous economic, educational, cultural and health impact on Coventry. During the City of Culture year, researchers from different fields of the partner universities (and beyond) will be engaged in qualitative and quantitative research in the city. It is expected that there will be opportunities for undergraduate involvement in various forms. Click here for information on monitoring and evaluation, and how you can get involved in Warwick's City of Culture activities.


Emily is one of the founding members of the Cities of Culture Early Career Research Network along with researchers at Coventry University, University of Hull, Royal Holloway University of London, Open University, University of Graz, and University of Warwick. Postgraduates and early career researchers with an interest in Cities of Culture, cultural mega-events, place-based cultural programmes and similar are invited to join the network's Jiscmail list at

In 2020, Emily was an acting Postgraduate Representative for the Theatre and Performance Research Association (TaPRA).


Theatre and Performance in Context

Theatre and the Creative Industries (2021-22)

Institute for Advanced Teaching and Learning: Coventry City of Culture: Place and Place-making, and Coventry City of Culture 2: The University and the City. (Co-developed with Professor Jonathan Heron and Mark Hinton, modules postponed for 2020-21 and 2021-22)


BA: English and Theatre Studies, University of Warwick

MA: English, University of Warwick

Office hours and Meetings

In-person or online

By appointment, please email (or use Outlook's scheduling assistant if you're based at Warwick)