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Vicki Squire

Professor of International Politics


Twitter: @vidkowiaksquire
Tel: +44 (0)24761 51977
Room: E1.13, Social Sciences Building
Advice and Feedback Hours: By appointment


I joined PAIS in 2012, following my role as RCUK fellow at the Centre of Citizenship, Identities and Governance, Open University, UK. Prior to that, I was ESRC postdoctoral research fellow in the Department of Political Science and International Studies at the University of Birmingham, UK. I completed my PhD and my MA studies as part of the Ideology and Discourse Analysis programme at the Department of Government, University of Essex, UK. I have also held visiting professor positions at Sapienza University, Rome, and Soka University Japan.

Research interests

My research is situated in the broad transdisciplinary field of International Political Sociology, and cuts across the areas of critical border, migration, citizenship and security studies. In particular, I focus on the politics of migration, asylum, and humanitarian protection, while also examining contemporary border struggles and forms of solidarity activism in various global and local contexts. I have published widely in these areas, and have presented lectures by invitation across the world, including in Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Italy, Japan, Sweden, the UK and the US. I am Co-Editor of the flagship International Studies Association journal International Political Sociology, and Convenor of the Warwick BREM (Borders, Race, Ethnicity and Migration) Network.

My recent research has focused on border struggles across the Mediterranean. In September 2020 my book based on research carried out for my Leverhulme Fellowship was published with Cambridge University Press: Europe's Migration Crisis: Border Deaths and Human Dignity. I also have a co-authored monograph forthcoming with Manchester University Press (2021) based on an ESRC project that I led during 2015-2019: Reclaiming Migration: Voices from Europe’s ‘Migrant Crisis’. In addition to these projects, I am also currently undertaking research on Syrian refugee experiences of re/making 'home' for the British Academy project Lost and Found? A Digital Archive of Testimonies of Migration, Displacement and Resettlement (Principal Investigator: Dr Yasmine Shamma, University of Reading).

From October 2020 I am Principal Investigator on a new project funded by the AHRC: Data and Displacement: Assessing the Practical and Ethical Implications of Targeting Humanitarian Protection. This project addresses the practical and ethical questions that arise from the increase of data-driven practices of humanitarian protection. It undertakes the urgent task of assessing the production and use of large-scale quantitative, biometric and visual data, to examine the impact these have on at-risk populations in conflict situations.The research will focus on the data-driven targeting of humanitarian protection to internally displaced persons (IDPs) in two regions: northern Nigeria and South Sudan.

Teaching and supervision

I have been Programme Director for the MA in International Security as well as module director and tutor on the MA modules PO966 Concepts and Theories of International Security and PO9A2 Borders and Migration. I have wide-ranging experience in teaching across the related fields of politics and international studies, as well as across the social sciences more widely.

I have experience of supervising a range of PhD students, and welcome proposals on any of the above or related topics. Prospective students are invited to send me a short outline proposal for their proposed project. Students supervised to completion include:

  • Dr Shannon Mathieu, Gender, Intervention Policy, and Right to Protect (2019)
  • Dr António Ferraz De Oliveira, The Politics of Territory in Early Anarchist Thought (2018)
  • Dr Veit Schwab, Discursive Borders in EUrope (2018)
  • Dr Lorenzo Vianelli, Governing Asylum Seekers: Logistics, Differentiation and Failure in the European Union’s Reception Regime (2018)
  • Dr Helen Arfvidsson, On Burning Cars, Concrete and Citizenship (2014)
  • Dr Jennifer Bagelman, City of Sanctuary: A State of Deferral (2012)

Recent publications

My recent works include:

  • Squire, V. (2020) Europe's Migration Crisis: Border Deaths and Human Dignity (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press).
  • Squire, V. (2020) “Migration and the politics of the ‘human’: Confronting the privileged subjects of IR”, International Relations, 
  • Squire, V. (2020) “Hidden geographies of the ‘Mediterranean migration crisis”, Environment and Planning C: Politics and Space, org/10.1177/2399654420935904
  • Squire, V. (2019) “A milestone missed? The global compact on migration and the limits of solidarity”, Global Affairs, 5(2): 155-162.
  • Squire, V. (2018) “Researching precarious migrations: Qualitative strategies toward a positive transformation of the politics of migration”, British Journal of Politics and International Relations 20(2): 441-458.
  • Squire, V. (2018) “Mobile solidarities and precariousness at City Plaza: Beyond vulnerable and disposable lives” Studies in Social Justice, 12(1): 111-132.
  • Perkowski, N. and Squire, V. (2018) “The anti-policy of European anti-smuggling as a site of contestation in the Mediterranean migration ‘crisis’”, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 42(3): 400-417.
  • Squire, V. (2017) “Divided Seas, Parallel Lives”, Women’s Studies Quarterly, 45(1&2): 69-89.
  • Squire, V. (2017) “Governing migration through death in Europe and the US: Identification, burial, and the crisis of modern humanism”, European Journal of International Relations, 23(3): 513-532.
  • Squire, V. (2017) “Unauthorised migration beyond structure/agency? Acts, interventions, effects”, Politics, 37(3): 254-272.

For a full list of my publications, please see my Publications page.



***See Vicki's research for free from 24 September 2020 at the Imperial War Museum London exhibition, Refugees, and view the IWM animated audio installation based on her project online***

My new book, Europe’s Migration Crisis: Border Deaths and Human Dignity, has been published with Cambridge University Press. I argue that the ‘migration crisis’ reflects a more fundamental breakdown of a modern European tradition of humanism, and unpack a series of pro-migrant activist interventions to show how these advance alternative horizons of solidarity and hope amidst the lived experiences of a lethal policy regime.

Professor Engin Isin (Queen Mary) describes the book as ‘masterfully’ documenting ‘how the European licence to dictate the measure of a human being is revoked by acts of hope and solidarity’, while Professor Suzan Ilcan (Waterloo) describes it as ‘an insightful and compelling analysis’ that is ‘powerfully argued, deeply compassionate and indispensable reading for scholars of migration and refugees’.

I have also published two journal articles recently: ‘Migration and the politics of “the human”: Confronting the privileged subjects of IR’ builds on the insights of anti-racist, indigenous and postcolonial scholarship to argue for appreciation of the silences and violences of contemporary migration politics. ‘Hidden geographies of the “Mediterranean migration crisis”’, in Environment and planning C, shows how migratory testimonies involve claims to justice in both anti-war and anti-colonial terms.

The Crossing the Mediterranean Sea by Boat final report and online interactive map are available online via the project website Several stories from the map feature as an animation in the new exhibition, Refugees, launched at the Imperial War Museum (London) on 24 September 2020.

openDemocracy have published important testimony from an unaccompanied minor in Sicily along with my reflections on his experiences

My book on US border humanitarianism has been published with Palgrave Pivot: Post/Humanitarian Border Politics between Mexico and the US


exclusionary politics of asylum

contested politics of mobility