Research activities

Our Visiting Scholars

No Longer Marginal - voices heard and issues highlighted by expert actions from the edges

At the start of their time with University of Greenwich our Visiting Scholars present their work, their drive, and their active creative research from across their careers. We welcome them to share their thoughts with us in this event,  and to outline their visions of the future and the potential transformations they see ahead.

With major shift changes around the world, linked to the pandemic as well as to 21st century cultural, political, environmental and economic upheavals, we have reached a reset point in time. Our scholars, with their passionate advocacy, have dedicated their work across many years into intense research and practise on a range of important issues that have risen to the surface in our present scenario.

Their work has pioneered a range of processes and outputs that are leading to significant shifts in the discourses around inclusivity and diversity, sustainability, intersectionality, digital innovation, human rights, co-creation and collaboration, public engagement and meaningful participation. This evening will be a chance to engage and ask questions, to learn how active outputs can enable a more inclusive debate and advance public understanding, enabling progressive societal moves.

Our first event was held in February 2022 with the following panel:

Ola Animashawum, Creative Director

As a theatre dramaturg, 25 years in the making, it Ola's principal role to react and respond to the original idea.  Ola began his journey into new writing at the Royal Court Theatre, as the head and founder of the Young Writers’ Programme, and took the question and provocation, “Of what’s your story?” as the quintessential starting point for the theatre we wanted to produce.  In the last five years, as Ola's travels and practice have taken him across the globe he's been developing an itch – a yearning for a new narrative.  A new way of seeing and telling, of bearing witness to our experience.  The question remains the same, but the way in which we answer it, given the catalyst of a global pandemic, might just be about to become vastly different than ever before.

Heather White, Visiting Fellow

During her fellowship term Heather will expand upon her expertise researching sustainability and human rights in global supply chains.  She will be liaising with the Film and Media Center on the production of a new documentary and a narrative screenplay.

Heather is the co-director and producer of the globally acclaimed documentary ‘COMPLICIT’, which received several international film festival awards, reflecting years of research on labour and human rights violations in the electronics industry.

Recent projects on carbon emissions in global apparel will inform her collaborations with those working on sustainability issues on campus.

Roy Williams, Playwright

Roy began writing plays in 1990. Since then, he  has been writing plays for over twenty -five years in many of this country’s prestigious theatres such the National Theatre, Royal Court,  and the RSC.

In 2000 he was the joint-winner of The George Devine Award and in 2001 he won the Evening Standard Award for Most Promising Playwright. He was awarded the OBE for Services to Drama in the 2008 Birthday Honours List and was made a fellow of The Royal Society of Literature in 2018. He has been leading the New Writers group Inspire at Hampstead Theatre for the last four years and is thrilled as well as honoured to be taking a position in a university as a visiting RSL fellow in 2023.

Gillian Youngs, Visiting Professor of Design and Digital Strategy

Gillian has a leadership background in media, entrepreneurial business and higher education. Her experience and project work in Europe, the USA, Africa and East Asia, provides her with cross-cultural perspectives informing all aspects of her work. Innovation and digital transformation have been core to her professional profile, and her current focus includes strategic work on young leadership and diversity and inclusion.


Ghislaine Boddington, Reader in Digital Immersion

Ghislaine Boddington is a curator, presenter and researcher, known for her pioneering work on the future human, collective embodiment and virtual physical blending since the early 1990s. Her practise led research, entitled ‘The Internet of Bodies’, is supported by her Readership In Digital immersion at the University of Greenwich and implemented through her Creative Direction of the body>data>space collective. Her direction and curatorial work include “me and my shadow” (National Theatre 2012) and Nesta’s FutureFest 2015-18. In 2017 Ghislaine was awarded the prestigious IX Immersion Experience international Visionary Pioneer Award.  She is a presenter for the weekly BBC World Service Digital Planet radio show, Associate Editor for AI & Society (Springer), a member of the DCMS College of Experts and a Trustee for Stemette Futures.