External Staff

LIA de Mattos Rocha

Visiting Fellow

Lia de Mattos Rocha




Lia Rocha is a full time adjoint professor at the Sociology Department of the State University of Rio de Janeiro (Uerj), Brazil. She has a PhD in Sociology from the Instituto Universitário de Pesquisa do Estado do Rio de Janeiro, with a period of six months at the École de Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris. At the State University of Rio de Janeiro she is a full time member of the Graduate Programme in Social Science and coordinates the CIDADES - Laboratory for Urban Studies.

Her research focuses on the mobilisation and voicing strategies that Rio de Janeiro citizens, specially favela dwellers, use to present their demands in the public arena. Recently, she published, with other colleagues, a book called Militarização no Rio de Janeiro: da Pacificação à Intervenção ("Militarisation at Rio de Janeiro: from 'pacification' to intervention"), as well as other articles on the issue.

At the moment, her research project analyses the so called “mega-events cycle" that was taking place in Rio de Janeiro for the last ten years and its imbrication with security polices implemented by the state, comparing this experience with other cities and countries that were also mega-events hosts.

Areas of Expertise: militarisation, social segregation, armed conflicts, violence, security polices, social movements, human rights



esther Meininghaus

Visiting Fellow

Esther Meininghaus




Esther Meininghaus is a Senior Researcher at the Bonn International Centre for Conversion (BICC). With a background in anthropology and political science, her research focuses on negotiations of power and governance among Middle Eastern communities.

Educated in Middle Eastern Studies at the Universities of Bonn (MA) and Manchester (PhD), she taught across several disciplines at BA and MA level at the University of Manchester on Middle Eastern Politics, International Development and Humanitarianism between 2008 and 2015. While her original interest lay in covert processes of power negotiations in Syria, she later explored the impact of humanitarian aid on local politics since the beginning of the present war.

At BICC, her research is presently concerned with the formation of delegations in the Syrian peace negotiations and their linkages with refugee communities in Germany and elsewhere. Esther has also worked as an advisor for various governmental and nongovernmental bodies, such as GSDRC/DFID, GIZ/BMZ, the Boell Foundation and others.

Areas of Expertise: Syrian politics, humanitarian aid, forced displacement, non-democratic governance in the Middle East, conflict among refugees, peace negotiations


sridhar Venkatapuram

Visiting Fellow

Sridhar Venkatapuram




Sridhar Venkatapuram is a Senior Lecturer in Global Health and Philosophy, Founding Director of the MSc Global Health & Social Justice, and Director of Education of Global Health Institute at King’s College London. He is currently a Wellcome Trust Senior Research Fellow and working at the Global Health Ethics Unit at the World Health Organization.  

His research and expertise is in global/public health, human rights, health ethics, political philosophy, and the capabilities approach. His aim is to bridge normative reasoning, particularly about social and global justice, with relevant natural and social sciences related to human health.  

Sridhar’s academic training is in a range of disciplines including international relations (Brown), public health (Harvard), sociology (Cambridge) and political philosophy (Cambridge).  While at Harvard, he worked with the late Arjun Sengupta (UN Independent Expert on the Right to Development) in conceptualising its philosophical and ethical framework.  He was also the first researcher at Human Rights Watch to specifically focus on health as a human rights concern, namely HIV/AIDS-related abuses in India.  His doctoral dissertation making the argument for a moral/human right to 'the capability to be healthy' was supervised by Melissa Lane, and examined and passed without corrections by Tania Burchardt (LSE) and Amartya Sen, Nobel prize winning economist and philosopher.  It formed the basis of his first book entitled Health Justice: An argument from the capabilities approach, published in 2011 by Polity Press.  

He is currently working on some books on the philosophy of public health, on the modern history and current issues in global health ethics, and global health justice.

Areas of Expertise: global and public health,  human rights, health ethics, political philosophy, capabilities approach, social determinants and inequalities in health


Katerina Hatzikidi

Visiting Fellow

 Katerina Hatzikidi




Katerina Hatzikidi is a social anthropologist and 2019-20 Swiss Government Excellence Postdoctoral Fellow at the Graduate Institute. She is also Postdoctoral Affiliate at the Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology (ISCA/SAME), University of Oxford and Associate Fellow at the Institute of Latin American Studies (ILAS), University of London, where she previously was 2018-19 Stipendiary Fellow.

Her research interests include questions of human rights, politics and religion, far-right nationalism, ethnic and religious minorities, and populist movements. She is currently editing a volume, with Eduardo Dullo, on Brazil’s recent ‘conservative turn’.

Katerina obtained her PhD from the University of Oxford in 2018 with a main area focus on Brazil. Drawing on longterm ethnographic field research conducted in Maranhão, her thesis, ‘Children of the land and children of the Saint: religion, heritage, and territoriality in a Brazilian quilombo’, focused on Afro-Brazilian grassroots political organisation around collective land rights. Her doctoral research formed part of the project ‘Currents of faith, places of history’, funded by the Humanities in the European Research Area (HERA) Network. During her doctoral studies, she was also Visiting Researcher at the Museu Nacional, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ). 

She has lectured and tutored at the School of Anthropology and Museum Ethnography (University of Oxford), at the Human Rights Consortium (SAS, University of London), and at universities in Brazil and Greece.

At the Graduate Institute, Katerina is working with Yvan Droz on a project at the intersection of politics, religion, and ethnicity. More specifically, she is looking at religious transformations in ‘ethnic group’ contexts within national states and on the ways these transformations engage or fail to engage with political organisation around collective land rights.

Areas of Expertise: Brazil, Christianity, identity politics, land rights, quilombolas, ethnic minorities, religious and political transformations