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Dr Mike Finn

Contact details
Tel.: 02476 575979 (Ext. 75979)
Room: R3.32 (Ramphal)

Office Hours: Tuesday 3.00pm-4.00pm;

Thursday, 12 noon-1.00pm

Dr Mike Finn

Deputy Head of the School for Cross-Faculty Studies (Liberal Arts Division)

Principal Teaching Fellow


BA History (Liverpool); BA Theology (Oxford); MPhil, PhD History (Cambridge)

Current Appointments and Affiliations:
  • Principal Teaching Fellow (Liberal Arts)
  • Honorary Research Fellow in Politics, University of Buckingham
Research Interests:

My current research focuses on contemporary British politics and the political economy of the post-war British state. I maintain an interest in education policy, specifically the politics of higher education, which was the subject of my doctoral dissertation. My forthcoming monograph, Socialism, Education and Equal Opportunity, focuses on the role of Anthony Crosland’s contribution to the politics of post-war British education policy begins a critique of state intervention in education within the context of a ‘moral economy’ of social fairness in the post-war period. This will be followed by a second book, The Birth of the Knowledge Economy, which interrogates the political economy of the post-war state in relation to British higher education. The two books taken together will offer a significant new interpretation of post-war British educational politics and its place in the wider life of the nation.

I have previously researched and published on a wide range of topics including the social history of the First World War, the politics of constitutional reform, contemporary education reform and the tenure in office of the coalition government between 2010 and 2015.


I was born in Liverpool, where I studied for my first degree, receiving a BA in History from the University of Liverpool. An MPhil and PhD in History at Magdalene College, Cambridge followed, and I spent a year at Harvard University as Kennedy Scholar in History. I also read BA Theology at Exeter College, Oxford, specialising in the study of Islam and Catholicism. I have taught widely in universities, teaching History and Politics at both Oxford and Cambridge, Politics, Political Science and International Relations at the London School of Economics (for the Hansard Society) and in the Department of Political Science and International Studies at the University of Birmingham. I also taught education at a number of institutions, and was the founder of the Centre for Education Policy Analysis.

I worked in Westminster politics for a number of years as a speechwriter and political adviser, and I also have a background in journalism. My research draws on this diverse range of experiences; my writing of political history/contemporary political analysis is indebted both to my original training as an empirical historian and my subsequent work in politics and the media.

I have appeared in a wide range of broadcast media, including on the BBC, ITV, Sky, CNN, CNBC and CTV and have written for a wide range of newspapers/magazines including the Guardian and Times Higher Education.

  • Liberal Arts: Science, Society and the Media
  • Liberal Arts: Brexitland
  • Liberal Arts: Anarchism and the Practice of History





Fellowships/Awards/Other Activities:
2016 Research Fellowship, University of Warwick
2015 Honorary Research Fellowship, University of Buckingham
2014 Student-Led Teaching Award (Inclusivity), Liverpool Hope University
2002-2003 Kennedy Scholarship, Kennedy Memorial Trust
2001 Palgrave/Times Higher Education Humanities and Social Sciences Prize