Dr Lorraine Macmillan PhD (Cantab)

Senior Lecturer in International Relations

Lorraine joined the department in 2013 as a Lecturer in International Relations.  She studied science as an undergraduate at University College Dublin and later read for a masters degree in International Studies at the University of Cambridge.  She completed her doctorate at the University of Cambridge in 2013.  She holds a Higher Diploma in Education from UCD and a Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education from the University of Greenwich.  She is a trained counsellor and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Lorraine is an Affiliated Lecturer at the Department of Politics and International Studies, University of Cambridge (2013-2017) and an occasional tutor at the Institute of Continuing Education there. She has been a Senior Teaching Fellow at the School of Oriental and African Studies and Visiting Lecturer at Birkbeck, University of London and Memorial University of Newfoundland.  She has lectured on the International Programmes of Pembroke, Downing and Lucy Cavendish Colleges, Cambridge and has been an undergraduate supervisor for the Department of Politics, University of Cambridge.

Lorraine's doctoral thesis Security Discourses and the Transnationalisation of the Private Sphere examines the re-imagining of the private sphere in global news media accounts of war.  She continues to work in this area and in the field of securitization theory, exploring media representations of refugees, asylum seekers, migrants and children.

Responsibilities within the university

  • Course coordinator for the MA courses Theoretical Perspectives in International Politics, Issues and Practice in International Politics, Research Methods in International Politics.
  • MA and undergraduate dissertation supervisor
  • Course coordinator for the third year undergraduate course International Organisations, Politics and Policy-Making.
  • Co-lecturer for the undergraduate course Europe without Borders; Introducing Politics; and Political Conspiracy and Slander.
  • Admissions tutor for the MA International Relations
  • Personal tutor to undergraduate and MA students.


Applied Sociology Research Network Grant, University of Greenwich, 2017.

(with Dr. Peter Jones and Aoife Hunt) Pump-Priming Fund, University of Greenwich, 2015.

(with Dr. Barkawi et al.) Conference Organisation Support Fund, Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities, University of Cambridge, 2012.

Federation for Women Graduates Foundation Fund, 2008.

Travel funds from the International Studies Association (2008), Wolfson College, Cambridge (2008), Centre of International Studies, University of Cambridge, Mary Euphrasia Mosley, Sir Bartle Frere and Worts Funds (2007).

Grants from the AHRC Doctoral Training Programme (2007) and Dublin Corporation.


Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Research / Scholarly interests

Lorraine's research interests lie in media representations of war and how they recast important ideas in the public consciousness such as security, belonging, the private sphere and childhood. Her doctoral thesis explored the re-imagining of the private sphere in newspaper descriptions across three decades and three continents. She continues to expand and deepen this work.

Alongside this work, Lorraine researches the securitization and desecuritization of refugees, asylum seekers and migrants. She is particularly interested in the practices of desecuritization employed by civil society to mitigate negative attitudes towards these groups.

Postcolonial approaches have inspired Lorraine's research into media representations of child soldiers and their role in projecting western fears surrounding childhood and in orientalising child soldier communities in the developing world.

Lorraine is interested in supervising doctoral students with an interest in critical security studies.

Recent publications

Journal articles

(2015) Children, civilianhood and humanitarian securitization, Critical Studies on Security (Special Issue) 3(1) 62-67.

(2009) The Child Soldier in North-South Relations, International Political Sociology 3(1):36-52.

Book chapters

(2016) Children, civilianhood and humanitarian securitisation.  In J.M. Beier (Ed) Childhood and the Production of Security. Routledge.

(2014) The many faces of globalization, in Helga Rainer et al. (Eds) Conservation and Welfare Status Report, New York and Cambridge: Arcus Foundation and Cambridge University Press.

(2011) Militarized Children and Sovereign Power, in Marshall Beier (Ed) The Militarization of Childhood: Thinking Beyond the Global South, New York and Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.


Invited papers

(2008, 2009) The Role of the Private Sphere in the War on Terror (University of Cambridge, Institute of Continuing Education's Short Courses for HM Forces).


(2016) Social Media, Securitisation and Migration. Paper presented to the Third CDCDI Conference: Changing Migration Policies: National Perspectives and Supra-national Strategies, Bucharest, Romania, Nov. 10-11.

(2014) The International New Agency as Transnationalising Securitisation Actor in Violent Conflict. Paper presented to the Transnational Violent Actors in War and Peace Conference, St. John's University, Newfoundland, Canada, July 15-17.

(2009) Childhood Security: The Growing Instrumentalization of the Private Realm in Global North-South Relations. Paper presented to the International Studies Association Annual Conference, New York, Feb. 15-18.

(2008) Ideologies of the Private Realm and North-South Relations. Paper presented at the Ideology and Discourse Analysis Conference, Roskilde University, September, 8-10.

(2007) Problematizing Premature Parenting in the Global South: An Analytics of Government Approach. Paper presented at the Standing Group on International Relations-European Consortium for Political Research Conference, Turin, September 12-15.


(2014) Internationalisation: Teaching and research in international Relations. Paper presented to the Grand Challenge of Internationalisation Conference, University of Greenwich, June 26th.

(2009) The Place of the Global in Debates over the Public/Private Divide.' Paper presented to the Shifting Boundaries of the Public and Private Conference, University of East Anglia, Norwich, June 4-5.

(2007) Constructing Children and Childhood In the International Sphere: Hegemonic Norms and Power Relations.' Paper presented at the British International Studies Association Annual Conference, University of Cambridge, December, 2007.

(2007) Inventing Child Soldiers.' Paper presented at the Centre of International Studies Staff and PhD Student Colloquium, November 14.

(2007) The Family, Colonial Patterns of Othering and Contemporary Development Practices. Paper presented at the AHRC Workshop, University of Bristol, February 6-11.

Conference Organisation

(2012) Dismantling Security Conference, Centre of Research for the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities, University of Cambridge, June 14-16th.

(2006-8) Chair and Convenor of the Centre of International Studies fortnightly Staff and PhD Student Colloquium, University of Cambridge.

(2007) Founder and Convenor of the Centre of International Studies Critical Theory Reading Group, University of Cambridge.

(2005) Roundtable Co-Chair, Sub-Saharan Africa Panel, SCUSA Conference,  US Responsibility and Global Community, Westpoint Military Academy, New York, November 2005.