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Senior Fellows

Senior Fellows

Our Senior Fellows have been flying the WIE flag form the beginning. Starting off as foundation Fellows or Honorary Fellows, they have been newly appointed as Senior Fellows in 2023 to help advise us and guide WIE as we grow. They put their expertise and experience in Public Engagement in service of WIE by either chairing Learning Circles, acting in an advisory capacity to the WIE Team, being mentors to other fellows and generally supporting the work of the Institute.

Alex Baker, Chemistry

I'm passionate about engagement because I get to share incredible stories about the universe. These stories have the power to inform, challenge and change the way we live our lives as human beings.

Engagement provides an opportunity to grapple with research in new ways and in new forums with the public. I've been very fortunate to have these opportunities at Pint of Science, the Warwick Christmas Lectures and various summer schools, as well as in our group’s lab encouraging students to look to engage communities beyond their field.

Amanda Bishop, Widening Participation/Outreach

I've been lucky to work in the field of Widening Participation for the last 15 years and have taken part in and organised numerous events and training sessions, attended by many types of audiences from young people, supporters and community groups. Two recent projects include the British Science Festival Schools Day and supporting as an Area Manager for the British Science Festival Family Day. I was inspired to set up my own Science Faculty Family Day in March 2020 for International Women in Science day. Named 'Slice of Science', it saw 45 local year 9 young women come onto campus and learn about science subjects they wouldn’t necessarily be exposed to. Slice of Science culminated in over 500 visitors attending and engaging in interactive workshops, three packed out lectures and hands on experiments for all the family! In another professional role, whilst working for Voluntary Action Coventry, I created and led on a Coventry wide campaign to increase volunteering to young people who were unemployed and at risk. I created a ‘voice’ group, a marketing campaign that went viral, as well as culminating in a city centre flashmob! In my non work capacity I have also been involved with Imagineers and was involved in the Godiva Awakes Choir, which was one of the most exciting things I have ever collaborated on.

Andy Johnson, Social Inclusion Manager

I have over 20 years’ experience in Widening Participation and Social Inclusion. I’ve spent my career working to enhance access, dispel myths and breakdown barriers to university by delivering wide-reaching, high-quality engagement opportunities to a diverse range of people. I truly believe that everyone should have the opportunity to engage with, and to be enabled to reach their potential within Higher Education. I’m excited to bring my experience of inclusive programme design to this Institute.

Bryan Brazeau, Liberal Arts

Bryan Brazeau is Associate Professor of Liberal Arts in the School for Cross Faculty Studies. As director of postgraduate taught programmes (Liberal Arts), he is coordinating the launch and recruitment for the new MASc in Community, Engagement, and Belonging, which seeks to explore the rich relationship between communities and sites of knowledge production through an in-depth, interdisciplinary lens. He also directs the SCFS Venice programme and teaches on a wide range of transdisciplinary modules ranging from Science, Society, and the Media to modules focussing on Paradises, Underworlds, Heroism, Exile, and Homecomings. He is the editor of The Reception of Aristotle’s Poetics in the Italian Renaissance and Beyond (Bloomsbury, 2020), a series editor for the Brill Sources in Early Poetics series, and has published a number of articles and book chapters on Torquato Tasso, Lucrezia Marinella, sixteenth-century chivalric epic, Counter-Reformation poetry, Dante, and early modern poetics. Currently he is working on two book projects; the first is entitled Global Villains, Local Heroes: Metaphors of Alterity in Counter- Reformation Christian Epic; the second focusses on the epistemic claims of fictional poetry as a form of knowing in early modern Italy and Spain. He obtained his MA and PhD from New York University in 2015.

Des Hewitt, Centre for Teacher Education

As Head of Primary and Early Years Teacher Education, I place engagement with schools at the heart of my work. Currently, chair of the University Council for the Education of Teachers (Primary and early years), I have a particular interest in supporting bilingual learners and those with special educational needs. I’ve worked on engagement projects with schools and Universities in Tanzania, Finland, Germany and India.

My publications include a focus on Innovation, Engagement and Learning and wellbeing. In addition, I’ve organised several conferences on children’s literature with leading writers such as Michael Morpurgo.

Gemma Wright, Head of Creative Learning at Warwick Arts Centre


My role is to develop strategies that widen the reach of the organisation to increase creative engagement opportunities for our community. I have previously worked at arts organisations such as Spike Island in Bristol, Leicester Print Workshop and Camden Art Centre. I am committed to demonstrating the social impact of arts and culture in people’s lives and to breaking down barriers to engagement. I believe that everyone has the right to experience and enjoy arts and culture, to be creatively empowered and to discover their creative futures.

Ian Tuersley, WMG


Prior to my career in academia, my background is as an aerospace apprentice-trained Chartered Engineer created a strong enthusiasm for ensuring both the application and practical relevance of his work. This led to my dedication to all aspects of engagement with a wide range of external bodies, not just to ensure that relevance but also to present the results to the widest possible audience. An example is my work with my students’ Group Project, ‘The Warwick Human-Powered Submarine’, which has involved everyone from school children to Professional Engineering Institutions in the exciting work that our students create at Warwick.

James Hodkinson, School of Modern Languages and Cultures


I work in the School of Modern Languages and Cultures, and specialise in Islam in modern Germany. I have a long experience of engaging with schools, both in student recruitment and also widening participation programmes. Since 2015 I’ve been working with community leaders, activists and artists from the Muslim community in the Midlands to co-deliver arts programmes that challenge media representations of Muslims, empower Muslim voices in the arts and build cross-community empathy and cohesion. I’m a board member of the Birmingham arts organization Soul City Arts and and mentor public engagement projects across the HE sector in the UK.

Kate Astbury, School of Modern Languages and Cultures


I'm Head of the School of Modern Languages and Cultures and co-convenor of the IATL Public Engagement module. I really enjoy sharing my research through public engagement. Since 2013 I've been working with English Heritage on a project to help visitors understand better the experiences of French prisoners of war at Portchester Castle during the Napoleonic wars. I've also worked with National Trust property Waddesdon Manor on their collection of French Revolutionary prints which form the basis of a series of lessons for primary school pupils every spring as part of Warwick's Bright Stars programme.

Margaret Low, WMG


I'm Director of Outreach and Widening Participation for WMG. I work with young people to encourage them to become creators as well as consumers of technology. My interactive workshops explore creative aspects of technology. I collaborate with local, national and international organisations and communities to explore inclusive, creative learning experiences. In 2008, I set up the student-led, Technology Volunteers project at Warwick, enabling students to present technology workshops for local school children

Mark Hinton, Centre for Lifelong Learning


I ran an IATL Community Engagement module for five years, and support colleagues across the University in developing their own community-engaged modules. I've developed engagement initiatives in neighbourhoods in the region, including working with 650 people in Canley, and I contribute to anti-racist initiatives across and outside the University. I am currently working with community groups in Coventry to develop their skills in inclusive online community engagement - they have much to teach us!

Martine Barons, Applied Statistics


It was the discovery, during my undergraduate degree, that Maths can make people’s lives better that inspired me to continue into postgraduate study and research. My excitement for Mathematical sciences and their applications naturally bubbles over in conversation and I waste no opportunity to explain the power of mathematical sciences for social good on TV, radio, in newspapers, at Pint of Science, Café Scientifique, science and other festivals and events for older school pupils.

Naomi de la Tour, IATL


My scholarship and teaching – which include topics and practices of reinventing education, the imagination, and social change – are informed by my belief that we reach richer, deeper understandings when we learn in community, and my co-creation and engagement work are grounded in this ethos. I have taught in education, arts and community settings around the world, including with children growing up in difficult circumstances in the West Midlands, and I find I can learn as much from listening to the seven year olds I have taught, as when I am working with eminent colleagues. I hope to use my WIE fellowship to contribute to developing partnerships which foster mutual, reciprocal learning.

Phil Jemmett, WMG


I'm happiest when tinkering and playing with equipment – we usually learn the most when something breaks. My Ph.D. is in biophysical chemistry and I joke that the subject name suggests no-one knew which science I did! Now I work with scientists and engineers at WMG to bring the latest technology off campus and out to the public. Before lockdown, I could be found in schools or libraries doing science shows but now I appear virtually. I believe collaboration between universities, community groups and schools leads innovation towards helping people and building the future we all want to live in.

Sarah Richardson, History


I’ve been passionate about engagement since the beginning of my career and actively seek opportunities to share my passion for history. I’ve been fortunate to have had many diverse experiences and hope to have many more. These include writing and presenting a documentary for BBC Radio 4, several appearances on Who Do You Think You Are?, curating an exhibition in Parliament for the centenary of women gaining the vote and commentating on the funeral of Margaret Thatcher and at the reinterment of Richard III. I work extensively with the local Coventry and Warwickshire community.

Sophie Staniszewska, Warwick Medical School


I lead the Patient and Public Involvement and Experiences of Care Programme at Warwick Research in Nursing, Warwick Medical School. I’m Co-editor in Chief of a Springer Nature Journal, Research Involvement and Engagement. I’ve carried out a wide range of studies in patient and public involvement and patient experiences, contributing to the development of the evidence base to inform involvement and engagement practice. I’m a founding member of the Global PPI Network and I’m currently leading PPI in studies focusing on mathematical and economical modelling, gastrointestinal infections, genomics, enabling data and health data science.

Vishalakshi Roy, Centre for Cultural and Media Policy Studies, School of Creative Arts, Performance and Visual Cultures


Having worked as a cultural engagement professional at a regional audience development agency for seven years, I developed a thorough understanding of what real engagement means, how to work with individuals from different walks of life, build mutual dialogue and lasting relationships. While at Warwick, I have taken on the role of an ambassador for the university primarily for the creative and cultural sector and researchers working in this area across other universities and research bodies. Internally at Warwick, I regularly engage individuals across departments due to my unique position of being associated with four departments, which has also helped me develop a nuanced understanding of the engagement potential of the University.