Notes on contributors
in Statelessness, governance, and the problem of citizenship

Contributors

Edwin O. Abuya is Associate Professor at the University of Nairobi School of Law. He has published several articles and presented papers at international conferences on the rights of vulnerable populations, including refugees, internally displaced persons, persons living with disabilities, and those at risk of statelessness. Abuya is also part of a Kenyan network that works on issues relating to persons at risk of statelessness.

Heather Alexander is an expert on nationality, statelessness, and refugee law. She previously worked for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Chad, Sri Lanka, Kosovo, and Côte d’Ivoire. In 2020, she completed a PhD in law at Tilburg University in the Netherlands. Her dissertation is on the nationality and statelessness of nomadic and mobile peoples. She has also published on climate change, statelessness, and refugee law. She is based in Montreal, Canada.

Areej Alshammiry is a doctoral student in Social Justice and International Studies at the University of Alberta under the supervision of Dia Da Costa. She researches nationalism, statelessness, and belonging in Kuwait. Her work also explores the post-stateless experiences of the Bidoon who migrated from Kuwait and settled in Canada. She is a former stateless person from Kuwait who is now a Canadian citizen residing in Canada.

Thiago Assunção is Assistant Professor of International Relations at Positivo University in Brazil. He holds a PhD in International Law from the University of São Paulo (USP) and he received the UNHCR Brazil Office 2018 award for best doctoral research. Assunção has worked for RFK Human Rights in Italy, at the UNESCO headquarters in Paris, and as adviser for the regional government of Paraná (Brazil). Currently, he works as an independent consultant on ESG, sustainable development and human rights.

Haqqi Bahram is a PhD candidate at the Institute for Research on Migration, Ethnicity and Society (REMESO) at Linköping University, Sweden. His research focuses on the legacy of statelessness in relation to forced migration and identity formation through the experiences of Syrian Kurds in Europe. Bahram has previously worked as a Senior Officer on humanitarian and development programmes implemented in Syria. Alongside his research, he is actively involved in international refugee-led advocacy.

Ahmad Benswait is from the Indigenous populations of Arabia. He was born and grew up in Kuwait, and he became an asylum seeker in the United Kingdom in 2019. He studies applied linguistics at UCL Institute of Education and has configured his research into diasporic political activism. His current research focuses on the nexus between language and identity in unbalanced power relations. He is writing his dissertation on the Bidoon community’s activism against social categorisations and control during the current global crisis. He is also preparing a PhD thesis on the same topic.

Tendayi Bloom is a political and legal theorist who focuses particularly on noncitizenship and engages from this perspective in UN and civil society processes relating to migration governance. She is author of Noncitizen Power: Agency and the Politics of Migration (Bloomsbury, forthcoming) and Noncitizenism: Recognising Noncitizen Capabilities in a World of Citizens (Routledge, 2018). She is co-editor of Understanding Statelessness (Routledge, 2017). She lectures in politics and international studies at the University of Birmingham, UK.

Deirdre Brennan is a PhD candidate at the Peter McMullin Centre on Statelessness, University of Melbourne, Australia. Brennan has published research on the nexus between statelessness and human trafficking, gender discriminatory nationality laws, and femicide in the United Kingdom. She also co-authored the children’s book The Girl Who Lost Her Country in collaboration with the Institute on Statelessness and Inclusion.

Natalie Brinham (also known as Alice Cowley) is an Economic and Social Research Council-funded PhD student at Queen Mary University of London. Her thesis focuses on Rohingya experiences and understandings of the slow and ongoing production of their statelessness in Myanmar. Brinham has also worked for many years in NGOs in the United Kingdom and Southeast Asia on forced migration, trafficking, and statelessness in both frontline service provision roles and research and advocacy roles.

Jan Lukas Buterman is a Canadian transgender activist and PhD student at the University of Alberta. His Master’s research investigated the technological effects of the birth certificate, revealing it to be a fetish object used to prove both identity and citizenship. He currently researches the intersections of identity and technology.

Janepicha Cheva-Isarakul is a Lecturer at the School of Social and Cultural Studies, Victoria University of Wellington, in New Zealand. Her research focuses on everyday experiences and the long-term impact of statelessness on children and adolescents. She has conducted long-term ethnographic research in northern Thailand on how stateless Shan youth make sense of the ‘statelessness’ label, make decisions about their future, challenge the idea of national identity, and negotiate their place within a society that simultaneously includes and excludes them.

Manal Deeb is a Palestinian-American visual artist who works between the Washington D.C. area, USA and Ramallah, Palestine. Since personality extends itself beyond present existence to what is the past, Deeb’s self-consciousness to preserve her Palestinian identity made her concerned and accountable for her past, just upon the same ground and for the same reason as she does for the present. A desire for happiness, which is the unavoidable attendance of consciousness of pleasure and pain, Deeb’s work is an attempt to reach a conscious happiness away from home (in exile). Deeb studied art and psychology disciplines in U.S. universities.

Ekaterina E is an artist and human rights activist originally from Soviet Central Asia. She has been living on the West Coast of the United States as a stateless person for more than twenty years. In 2017, Ekaterina co-founded United Stateless – an organisation dedicated to human rights advocacy for stateless people in the U.S. She currently serves on the board of United Stateless, as well as the advisory council for the Institute on Statelessness and Inclusion.

Thana Faroq is a Yemeni documentary photographer and educator based in The Netherlands. Her work aims to achieve a personal reportage that negotiates themes of memory, boundaries, and violence. Previously, Faroq worked with various international non-governmental organisations in Yemen to tell stories of displaced women and children there.

Anoshay Fazal is a lawyer and Senior Research Associate at the Shaikh Ahmad Hassan School of Law, Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS). Fazal holds an LLM from the University of London with a specialisation in Law and Development and has ten years of experience in academic and policy research focusing on constitutionalism and legal history, human rights and humanitarian law, environmental justice, and other areas within the South Asian region. She has also worked on implementing and coordinating projects with the UN Refugee Agency in Pakistan and the American Bar Association – Rule of Law Initiative, focusing on Refugee Law, Business and Human Rights, and more recently the Rights of the Child in Pakistan, respectively. Fazal also serves as an advisory member with the Lahore Education and Research Network (LEARN).

Katharine Fortin is Associate Professor in Public International Law and Human Rights at Utrecht University’s Netherlands Institute of Human Rights. The focus of her research is the legal framework that applies to non-international armed conflicts, with a particular focus on intersections between international humanitarian law and international human rights law.

Karina Gareginovna Ambartsoumian-Clough, born of Armenian descent in the former U.S.S.R., has been stateless since the age of eight. Ambartsoumian-Clough lives in sanctuary in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, with her husband Kevin. In 2017, Karina helped found United Stateless and now leads the organisation, aiming to build and inspire community among those affected by statelessness, and advocating for their human rights.

Dilli Gautam is President of the Bhutanese Community of Michigan (BCM), which started and continues to be operated by resettled Bhutanese refugees. Gautam is Associate Director of Community Engagement of Bethany Refugee Services in Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA. Gautam has an extensive background working with refugee and immigrant students in Michigan. He holds a Master’s in Public Health from Eastern Washington University. His graduate research focused on mental health among immigrant youth.

Odessa Gonzalez Benson is Assistant Professor at the University of Michigan School of Social Work and Detroit School of Urban Studies in the United States. Her research areas include refugee resettlement, participatory approaches to urban governance with refugees, state–civil society relations, and critical policy studies. She also conducts research on migrant advocacy in Tunisia and climate displacement in the Philippines.

Nataliia Kasianenko is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science at California State University, Fresno. She received her PhD in political science from the University of Nevada, Reno. Her research focuses on comparative politics and international relations, with an emphasis on nationalism, identity, and politics in the countries of the former Soviet Union. Her work explores how political elites may intentionally intensify nationalism to gain legitimacy or advance to power.

Pefi Kingi is a daughter of Niue and a Pacific civil society leader. Her background is in education, mental health, and public health management. An Indigenous language activist, her passion and specialisation focuses on Pacific community development and effectiveness. She contributes to several global committees, with a high commitment to advancing the Blue Pacific agenda for Pacific prosperity as a regional legacy.

Lindsey N. Kingston is Associate Professor of International Human Rights at Webster University in Saint Louis, Missouri, United States, where she directs the Institute for Human Rights and Humanitarian Studies. Kingston is a Fulbright Scholar (Università degli Studi di Milano) and previously edited Human Rights in Higher Education: Institutional, Classroom, and Community Approaches to Teaching Social Justice (Palgrave Macmillan, 2018). Her monograph Fully Human: Personhood, Citizenship, and Rights (Oxford University Press, 2019) was awarded the 2020 International Studies Association ‘Human Rights Best Book Award’.

Bart Klem is Associate Professor in Peace and Development at Gothenburg University, Sweden. His main research interest lies in rebel governance, de facto sovereignty, public authority, the positioning of civil servants, and international intervention in the complicated political landscapes of armed conflict. He edited a special issue in Modern Asian Studies (52/3) titled ‘The Politics of Order and Disturbance: Public Authority, Sovereignty and Violent Contestation in South Asia’ and he is completing a book manuscript on sovereign enactment and contestation within the Tamil nationalist insurgency in Sri Lanka.

Arison Kul is a self-taught artist from Tirokave village in the Eastern Highlands of Papua New Guinea. He started painting in 2003 and it has not been an easy journey. He is fascinated by colours and explores various styles and techniques. He is now based in Lae, Papua New Guinea.

Fred Kuwornu is an Italian-born film producer, director, and activist now based in the United States. He is perhaps best known for his films Inside Buffalo (2010), 18 Ius Soli (2011), and Blaxpolitalian (2016).

Yoana Kuzmova is a lawyer practising in the areas of immigration, citizenship, and refugee law. Her work focuses on protracted displacement, statelessness, and the future of citizenship. She has worked as a Clinical Instructor at the Boston University School of Law International Human Rights Clinic and held a fellowship at the Forced Migration and Human Trafficking Initiative at Boston University. Previously, Kuzmova represented asylum seekers and worked on federal appeals challenging deportation from the United States. She holds a JD and an MA in International Relations from Boston University, and is a member of the Massachusetts and New York bars.

Jamie Chai Yun Liew is Associate Professor at the Faculty of Law, University of Ottawa, and a lawyer, called to the Bar of Ontario (Canada). She appeared before the Supreme Court of Canada representing Amnesty International and the Canadian Council for Refugees on two cases involving stateless persons (relating to immigration detention and the interpretation of the Citizenship Act). Her research focuses on how the law marginalises immigrants, refugees, and stateless persons. She is also the daughter of a previously stateless person.

Danielle Legros Georges is a Haitian-born American writer, translator, academic, and author of several books of poetry. She directs Lesley University’s MFA programme in creative writing and has received numerous fellowships and awards in literature and the arts. Between 2015 and 2019, she served as the second Poet Laureate of the City of Boston.

Pragna Paramita Mondal is a PhD scholar at the Women’s Studies Research Centre, University of Calcutta, and Assistant Professor at Narajole Raj College, India. She completed her M.Phil as UGC Junior Research Fellow at the Institute of Development Studies Kolkata. She is conducting ongoing multi-sited research on surrogacy in India. She has published in the Economic & Political Weekly (2018) and has contributed to Population Dynamics in Eastern India and Bangladesh: Demographic, Health and Developmental Issues (Springer, 2020), which is listed under STICERD LSE India Observatory Publications.

Nina Murray is Head of Policy and Research at the European Network on Statelessness (ENS), a civil society alliance committed to addressing statelessness in Europe. She leads work on ENS’s Statelessness Index and coordinates ENS’s research, training, and law and policy development in priority thematic areas – including forced migration, child rights, immigration detention and access to justice, and minority rights. Her professional experience has focused on migration, asylum, and gender equality in a range of roles, including with the Scottish Refugee Council and the Board of Scotland’s leading feminist organisation, Engender.

Shabu Mwangi was born in Nairobi, Kenya, in 1985. He lives and works as an artist in Mukuru slum, where he established the Wajukuu Art Project with the deep conviction that his work could highlight the lives of disadvantaged minorities in his community. His work has been exhibited in Kenya, the United Kingdom, and Germany.

Yoosun Park is Associate Professor at the University of Pennsylvania School for Social Policy and Practice in the United States. Park’s scholarship, framed within the broad substantive area of immigration, is informed by poststructuralist theories of discourse and methods of inquiry, and pursues two overlapping lines of inquiry: social work’s history with immigrants and immigration, and the study of contemporary issues pertinent to immigrants and the issue of immigration.

Allison J. Petrozziello is a migration researcher and human rights advocate who is currently pursuing a PhD in Global Governance at the Balsillie School of International Affairs, Wilfrid Laurier University, Canada. Her doctoral research takes a feminist approach to the study of exclusionary birth registration practices that generate a risk of statelessness, building upon prior research in the Dominican Republic. She has consulted for UN Women and ILO, among others, and is affiliated with the International Migration Research Centre and the Caribbean Migrants Observatory (OBMICA).

Mawa Rannahr is a self-taught, undocumented stateless painter living in the United States since 1994.

Melissa Schnyder is Professor of International Relations and Global Security at American Public University and Co-Director of the Multidisciplinary Research Council. Her research examines civil society advocacy to address human security policy issues, with a focus on the European Union context. In addition to books published by Rowman & Littlefield International (Activism, NGOs and the State: Multilevel Responses to Immigration Politics in Europe, 2015) and Lexington Books (Advocating for Refugees in the European Union: Norm-Based Strategies by Civil Society Organizations, 2020), she has published numerous articles in peer-reviewed journals including the Journal of Contemporary European Research, Journal of European Integration, Comparative European Politics, and Social Movement Studies.

Marika Sosnowski is an Australian-qualified lawyer and a Research Fellow with the German Institute for Global and Area Studies. Her primary research interests are in the fields of critical security studies, complex political order, local/rebel governance, and legal systems. Her geographical area of specialisation is the Middle East, particularly Syria.

Christoph Sperfeldt is Senior Research Fellow at the Peter McMullin Centre on Statelessness at Melbourne Law School, Australia. Prior to this, Sperfeldt was Deputy Director at the Asian International Justice Initiative, a joint programme of the East-West Center and the Center for Human Rights and International Justice, Stanford University, where he has supported human rights and rule of law capacity-building efforts in Southeast Asia. From 2007 to 2011, he was Senior Advisor with the Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) in Cambodia. He holds a PhD from the School of Regulation and Global Governance (RegNet), Australian National University.

Francis Tom Temprosa is a Doctor of the Science of Law candidate and Michigan Grotius Fellow at the University of Michigan Law School (USA), where he also obtained his Master of Laws degree with a certificate of merit under a DeWitt Fellowship. He is an Adjunct Professor of Law at the Ateneo de Manila University Law School and a Professorial Lecturer at the De La Salle University Manila College of Law in the Philippines, teaching human rights law and international criminal law, among other courses. He is the Director of the Human Rights Education and Promotion Office of the Commission on Human Rights (Philippines) and worked for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees from 2009 to 2012. He writes on human rights, international law, refugee law, and the law on statelessness.

Jason Tucker is Researcher in Global Political Studies, Malmö University, Sweden. His main area of focus is the relationship between statelessness and forced migration. He has researched and published on asylum and refugee law, citizenship, integration, and migration theory. Prior to his current position, Tucker worked on statelessness for UNHCR Central Asia and UNHCR Northern Europe. He completed his PhD on statelessness in Lebanon in 2014 at the Centre for Development Studies at the University of Bath, United Kingdom.

Maarja Vollmer is a Senior Analyst with Civitta Estonia. She holds a Master’s degree in International Migration and Ethnic Relations from Malmö University in Sweden. Vollmer specialises in research on migration and fundamental rights issues and has previously carried out both qualitative and quantitative research projects. These have included: research on the stateless youth in Estonia and their citizenship choices (2015), the comparison of rights of children in irregular status in Sweden and the United Kingdom (2015), the reality of free movement for young European citizens (2016), and human rights and human rights education in Estonian schools and education policy (2017).

Kate Wilkinson Cross is a Senior Lecturer in Public International Law, Gender and the Environment at De Montfort University’s School of Law. Her main research areas lie in ecofeminist legal theory and representations of the environment in international law. Her research focuses on discourses of technology, modernisation and knowledge in international environmental law, with a focus on the role of technology in the context of food security and biodiversity conservation. Drawing on ecofeminist theory, her work explores how discourses of ecological modernisation and technology shape negotiations in the Convention on Biological Diversity. Other areas of interest include environmental security, statelessness, and desertification.

Bridget Wooding is a researcher, advocate, writer, trainer, and expert witness on statelessness and related issues. She has coordinated the Caribbean Migration and Development Observatory (OBMICA), based in Santo Domingo (www.obmica.org), since its inception in 2009. She is the author of numerous publications and in 2013, she delivered an expert witness testimony in the case of Expelled Dominicans and Haitians v. Dominican Republic, which led to significant jurisprudence on the right to nationality for Dominicans of foreign ancestry (IACtHR, 2014). Under her leadership, OBMICA is a founding member of the Americas Network on Nationality and Statelessness, established in late 2014.

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