Decolonising sexual and gender-based violence in Higher Education

22 November 2022 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
University of Westminster
309 Regent St.
London W1B 2HW
Decolonising sexual and gender-based violence in Higher Education @ University of Westminster | England | United Kingdom

The Centre for the Study of Democracy (CSD) is hosting a project led by Dr Adrija Dey on Decolonising sexual and gender-based violence in Higher Education. This hybrid event marks the official launch of this 4-year project focused on Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV) in Higher Education (HE) – a widespread, pressing global problem that requires urgent attention and collective action so that it can be more effectively addressed in Universities and other HE institutions.

The Centre for the Study of Democracy (CSD) is based in the School of Social Sciences at the University of Westminster. The Centre undertakes research across a range of critical social and political challenges, promoting an interdisciplinary environment.

The key aim of the project is to develop a survivor-centred, intersectional, decolonial and abolitionist theory and approach to prevent and better respond to SGBV in HE. We will do this by bringing together insights and experiences from survivors, activists, academics, and policy makers in the Global South, coupled with a strong focus on developing prevention strategies and building culture change in HE institutions.

In developing new theory and approaches, the project aims to decolonise our dominant knowledges and understandings of SGBV in HE. This entails critically questioning the standpoint and perspective from which our information about SGBV comes from, as well as regarding how universities understand and deal with it. Crucially, it also means engaging with learning from institutional practices and feminist struggles in the Global South and applying these to how we address SGBV in HE worldwide. For this reason, this project will prioritise the mobilisation and amplification of scholarship and activisms from the Global South.

The event will be followed by a wine reception.


Dr Adrija Dey is leading this project. She is a Senior Research Fellow at the School of Social Science and School of Media and Communication at the University of Westminster. Adrija conducts her research with a specific focus on the Global South and through a decolonial, abolitionist and intersectional feminist lens. She has been a vocal campaigner against sexual misconduct in Higher Education and currently is the Director of International Knowledge Exchange at the 1752 group.

Dr Jess Wild is the postdoctoral research fellow at the School of Social Science and School of Media and Communication at the University of Westminster working on this project. She has a background in conducting feminist, intersectional, participatory survivor-led research in the field of gender-based violence, with a specific focus on the gender politics of prevention and intervention responses.

Professor Alison Phipps has led the work on SGBV in Higher Education in the UK. She is a political sociologist and scholar of gender with interests in feminist theory and politics, the body and violence and neoliberal racial capitalism. She has pursued these in various areas including sexual violence, sex work, reproduction, and institutional cultures. All this work has involved different forms of engagement and collaboration, locally, nationally and internationally. She is currently co-leading the Feminist Gender Equality Network’s gender-based violence group and one of the patrons of the Association of Gender Studies in Africa. She recently launched a new collective called Abolition Feminism for Ending Sexual Violence, with her Newcastle colleagues.

Professor Dibyesh Anand is the Head of School of Social Sciences. He is the co-chair of University’s Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) Committee as well as the Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) Network Committee and elected as the nominee for Staff Governor for the University’s Court of Governors. His research, academic writings and public engagement focuses on topics including colonial practices of postcolonial states including China in Tibet and Xinjiang and India in Kashmir, majoritarian nationalisms including Hindutva, politics of security and representation, ethnic relations in Zanzibar. He has authored monographs including Geopolitical Exotica: Tibet in Western Imagination, Tibet: A Victim of Geopolitics, and Hindu Nationalism in India and the Politics of Fear.

Srila Roy is Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa. She is the project partner for South Africa. She is the author of Remembering Revolution: Gender, Violence and Subjectivity in India’s Naxalbari Movement (Oxford University Press, 2012), editor of New South Asian Feminisms (Zed Books, 2012), and co-editor of New Subaltern Politics: Reconceptualising Hegemony and Resistance in Contemporary India (Oxford University Press, 2015). Her book on feminist and queer feminist politics in liberalised India is forthcoming with Duke University Press. At Wits, she leads the Governing Intimacies project, which promotes new scholarship on gender and sexuality in Southern Africa and India, with support from the Andrew W. Mellon foundation.

Caroline Rodrquez a doctoral Candidate at Fundação Getulio Vargas – EAESP, São Paulo. She is the project partner for Brazil. Her research is in the area of domestic violence. She is a speaker , teacher, and consultant is the areas of management and education in a feminist decolonial perspective addressing social justice.

We would be delighted if you could join us to celebrate the launch of this important project, as we begin to make connections and start what we hope will be ongoing, productive conversations among our colleagues and partners working in this space.

The event is open to all the students and colleagues of University of Westminster as well as members of public. Survivors, academics, activists, and practitioners working in the area of sexual and gender-based violence in HE are warmly invited to attend either in person or online.

Registration is free but compulsory via Eventbrite Link.

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