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More Leverhulme Success for University

Maria Another member of the University of Warwick Department of Sociology has been awarded a prestigious Philip Leverhulme Prize in the 2017 awards round. Dr Maria do Mar Pereira’s prize brings the University’s total to five, out of just thirty prizes awarded nationally this year across different disciplines.

Philip Leverhulme Prizes recognise the achievement of outstanding researchers whose work has already attracted international recognition and whose future career is exceptionally promising.

Dr Maria do Mar Pereira was awarded the Philip Leverhulme Prize for her internationally renowned ethnographic research on gender in schools and academia. Dr Pereira was especially commended for her commitment to producing theoretically ambitious but socially relevant research which advances complex academic debates, and yet is also accessible to a wider audience beyond academia.

She hopes to use the award to produce original work that will capture not just the attention of academics, but also the imagination of a wider audience, helping to change how we see gender.

Dr Pereira’s first book, an award-winning study of how young people negotiate gender and sexuality in schools, has received significant media coverage all over the world and is shaping national policy on gender and sex education in Portugal. Her second book, an ethnography of academia asking how academics decide what counts as proper knowledge, has been described as a game-changing contribution to feminist scholarship internationally.

The award will enable Dr Pereira to give her study into gender and sexuality in schools a longitudinal dimension by revisiting the children who took part in the study 10 years ago and analysing how they negotiate gender and sexuality now, as young people transitioning into adulthood in times of austerity. She will also begin a new project on gender inequalities in our intimate lives.

Commenting on her success, she said: “I am absolutely ecstatic to have been awarded this prize, and very grateful to the judging panel for their support for my work.

Receiving a Philip Leverhulme Prize means the world to me, because this is not just another research grant – the prize enables scholars to explore forms of knowledge production that might not fit conventional funding streams.”

The University’s other four Prizes were won by Dr Ana Aliverti, from the School of Law; Dr Alice Mah, Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology; Dr John Michael, Assistant Professor in the Department of Philosophy; and Dr Hendrik Weber, Associate Professor and Royal Society University Research Fellow in the Warwick Mathematics institute.

Photo:Dr Maria do Mar Pereira at the Philip Leverhulme Prize gala dinner


Dr Pereira is an Associate Professor in Sociology and Deputy Director of Warwick’s Centre for the Study of Women and Gender. She is the author of Power, Knowledge and Feminist Scholarship: an Ethnography of Academia (Routledge, 2017) and Fazendo Género no Recreio: a Negociação do Género em Espaço Escolar (Doing Gender in the Playground: the Negotiation of Gender in Schools), (Imprensa de Ciências Sociais, 2012).

The Leverhulme Trust was established by the Will of William Hesketh Lever, the founder of Lever Brothers. Since 1925 the Trust has provided grants and scholarships for research and education. Today, it is one of the largest all-subject providers of research funding in the UK, distributing approximately £80m a year. For more information about the Trust, please visit


Sheila Kiggins

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