Our Researchers

The multi-disciplinary, bi-lingual research group based in the College of Arts and Humanities is well-balanced in terms of research expertise and skills. Our researchers are available to collaborate with community members and groups who are interested in planning heritage based activities and research. If you wish to plan a project or contact a researcher as part of the Connected Communities Project please Contact Kate.

Professor Huw Bowen is an economic and social historian who has been exploring the ways in which British interactions with Asia shaped the development of the Swansea Valley.  Huw was principal Investigator for the ESRC project ‘History, heritage, and urban regeneration ‘and he is now leading the multi-partner Cu @ Swansea project which is focused on the heritage-led regeneration of the Lower Swansea Valley.

Dr Chris Evans is a historian and lecturer at the Faculty of Business and Society at University of South Wales. His research interests include the iron industry in Britain during the Industrial Revolution, radical politics in Britain in the age of the French Revolution, trade between Britain and the Baltic in the eighteenth century, the early modern Atlantic economy and slavery in the Atlantic world.

Mr Stephen Donnelly is a Swansea based artist, performer, and organiser. Steve’s practice encompasses helping to organise community groups, campaigns and spaces, producing and performing small to large-scale works in urban environments which make attempts to reclaim public space with games, spontaneous playful acts and protest. Steve’s work regularly uses site-responsive performance, direct address and audience participation, inviting people to re-imagine their surroundings and to encourage social and personal criticism. Steve has in the last few years begun to find a focus on oral histories and autobiography through the curation of gallery exhibitions and performed interventions in public spaces.

Dr Tehmina Goskar is a Research Associate whose research expertise is in historical material culture, particularly of industries from the Middle Ages to the present day. Tehmina has conducted extensive work in online cultural content development and as Project Officer for the ‘History, Heritage, and Urban Regeneration’ project she established an extensive range of links with community groups across the region.

Dr Gwenno Ffrancon is Director of Academi Hywel Teifi within the College of Arts and Humanities. Her area of expertise is Welsh film, animation and media. She has considerable experience of working alongside community groups through a variety of means including engagement with local and community-based societies (from local history societies to WI groups), via national and international forums, such as the national eisteddfodau of Wales and Welsh-American conferences in the US, and through various media platforms including radio, television and interactive media.

Dr Martin Johnes is Senior Lecturer and Head of the Department of History and Classics. His publications include Wales since 1939 ( 2012) .  He is former chair of the British Society of Sports History and an executive member of Llafur, the Society for Welsh People’s History. Both these organizations are committed to bringing academic history to wider audiences and have memberships and remits that extend far beyond conventional academic circles. He has recently secured a Heritage Lottery Fund grant to organize a community project on the centenary history of Swansea City Football Club.

Mr Mostyn Jones is a PGR student and Tutor in Media Studies.  He worked for three years on a European-funded project alongside local Small and Medium Enterprise (SMEs), voluntary organisations and online services. These included technologies and components such as email, bespoke websites and interactive facilities.

Dr Gethin Matthews is a Lecturer in History through the medium of Welsh.  In 2010-11 he ran the JISC-funded project ‘Welsh Voices of the Great War online’, which successfully engaged with communities around Wales to gather and share family-held material related to WW1. He has a personal interest in the history of industry in the region, and made two programmes for BBC Radio Cymru in 2009 about the Mynydd Newydd Colliery in the Lower Swansea Valley.

Dr Louise Miskell is a Senior Lecturer in History whose research interests focus on the history of urban and industrial communities in eighteenth and nineteenth-century Britain. An academic collaborator on Swansea’s recent ESRC-funded project on the Local and Global Worlds of Welsh Copper, her recent research on the Welsh copper industry fed into the public events and exhibitions produced as part of that project.

Dr Steve Morris is a Lecturer in Welsh before joining Academi Hywel Teifi, Steve spent nineteen years as a lecturer in the Department of Adult Continuing Education where he taught Welsh extensively throughout the communities of West Glamorgan and East Carmarthenshire.  He was recently in receipt of a research grant to look at language centres and social networks of adults learning Welsh in non-Welsh speaking areas – mainly, Swansea, Neath Port Talbot, Merthyr Tydfil, Bridgend, Newport and Mold.

Mr Richard Owen began his career as a trainee, later assistant, solicitor with the British Coal Corporation. Following that he went to the Cayman Islands Law School and was a member of the Chambers of the Attorney General of the Cayman Islands. He has set up an run law clinics in a number of universities and joined Swansea University as Director of the Swansea Law Clinic in January 2017. In addition, to running clinics providing initial advice and assistance to members of the public in areas such as housing, relationship breakdown, consumer issues, and employment law, Richard has also run a prison law project in association with the Prisoners’ Advice Service, and a Miscarriage of Justice Project in association with Inside Justice and the Centre for Criminal Appeals.

Mrs Kate Spiller leads the Connected Communities Project at Swansea University and specialises in community-focused research that researches and celebrates the history of Welsh communities. Kate also leads the Heritage Skills Programme at the Research Institute for Arts and Humanities (RIAH) working closely with national and international heritage organisations to offer master classes, workshops, placements and skills training to postgraduate students focused on the heritage sector.

Professor David Turner, Department of History and Classics, Swansea University is a disability historian. He is the author of Disability in Eighteenth-Century England: Imagining Physical Impairment (Routledge, 2012), which won the Disability History Association Outstanding Publication Prize in 2012, and was academic advisor to BBC Radio 4’s ‘Disability: A New History’ (2013). He is currently Director of Disability and Industrial Society: A Comparative Cultural History of British Coalfields 1780-1948 (2011-16), funded by a Wellcome Trust Programme Award.

Dr Steven Thompson is a historian at the University of Aberystwyth with specific interest in the history of Wales and Britain in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. His research interests include the history of medicine, the provision of welfare, and labour history. His current research is focused on the mixed economy of medical and welfare provision in south Wales from c.1780 to 1950. He also has research interests in the history of housing, folk-song revivals, and the history of sport.

Professor Chris Williams is the Head of the School of History, Archaeology and Religion at Cardiff University. His research interests include the social, economic, political and cultural history of the South Wales coalfield and associated ports, political cartooning in nineteenth- and twentieth-century Britain Alpinism, mountaineering and rock-climbing from the late eighteenth century to the present. Chris has also researched and written extensively on the life and times of Richard Burton (1925-84).

Dr Yan Wu has research interests which include digital media; risk reporting; migration and media; and feminist media studies. Her recent publications concern media representation of Chinese irregular migration into Europe.


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