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Institute of Criminology


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The Justice and Society Research Centre at the Institute of Criminology, Cambridge, is delighted to invite you to a hybrid research seminar to mark International Women’s Day 2024. The seminar will invite reflections from leading experts in the field of violence against women (VAW) including Zeynep Kaya (Sheffield), Adrija Dey (Westminster) and Miranda Horvath (Suffolk). The event will take place in the basement of the Institute of Criminology (CB3 9DA) from 3pm to 5pm on 8 March 2024. Coffee will be available from 2:45pm and the seminar will be followed by a drinks reception till 5:45pm.


With its roots in socialist feminist activism, International Women’s Day (IWD) was first celebrated over a century ago to demand liberation for women in cultural, political and material terms. In its ethos and orientation, IWD is aimed at working towards the emancipation of the global majority of women, whose gender-based subordination is shaped by intersecting structures of inequality such as race, class and nationality. This understanding of gender as being inextricably enmeshed in other inequalities has not permeated the field of feminist criminology.

A multidimensional approach to gender inequality presents both challenges and opportunities for feminist criminology. For example, while cultural theories of VAW would trace such violence to patriarchal attitudes, materialist feminist theories would zoom out to analyse whether broader economic and political structures shape victimisation, offending and institutional responses in this area. Similarly, deploying intersectionality as a framework for analysis would emphasise the heterogeneity of women’s experiences in navigating, or choosing not to navigate, through institutional processes in the aftermath of violence. The recognition of these multiple marginalisations is therefore crucial to a full appreciation of how violence is used to perpetuate women’s subordination, even though this recognition simultaneously risks fragmentation within the broader feminist community. Engaging with intersecting inequalities also requires us to reckon with how, in the global academy, some theories, policies and approaches (from high income countries) come to be characterised as ‘leading’ or ‘universal’ while others have their significance shrunk to fit only specific (low income) contexts and locales. Adopting a feminist praxis therefore requires constant reflection not just on what topics are included within VAW research, and who conducts research, but also what knowledge comes to be regarded as essential rather than optional.

Against this background, we are delighted to invite you to a conversation among the invited experts, which will draw upon case studies from a range of contexts, including India, Iraq, England and Wales, and will focus attention on the experiences of multiply marginalised women. The event will be conducted in the form of an interview with the speakers, followed by interaction with members of the audience. 

Please register for online or in person attendance if you are interested in joining us. To view information about the building’s accessibility, you can view AccessAble’s guide. We will provide live BSL interpretation for this event and you are welcome to raise other accessibility concerns with us through the registration form.

Please note that this event deals with themes that might be distressing to some. We encourage you to seek appropriate support if needed. For example, the NHS provides a list of resources that might be useful in relation to domestic abuse or sexual violence.

We hope to welcome many of you at the event.


About the speakers


Adrija Dey


Dr Adrija Dey is a Senior Research Fellow at the University of Westminster. She is the Principal Investigator on the UKRI-funded research project "FemIDEAS: Decolonising Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) in Higher Education (HE)". She is the author of Nirbhaya: New Media and Digital Gender Activism. Adrija has been a vocal campaigner against sexual misconduct in Higher Education and currently is the Director of International Knowledge Exchange at the 1752 group. She is also the founder of the North-South Feminist Dialogue platform that aims to foster conversations and solidarity among activists and academics working on SGBV in HE in the Global North and Global South.


Miranda Horvath


Professor Miranda Horvath is Director of the Institute for Social Justice & Crime at the University of Suffolk and a leading international researcher in the field of forensic psychology, specifically Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG). Miranda is co-editor Rape: Challenging Contemporary Thinking and the second edition of The Cambridge Handbook of Forensic Psychology and has published numerous journal articles and reports. In 2020 Miranda founded the Violence Against Women and Girls Research Network  which brings together researchers providing opportunities to meet regularly, share ongoing, completed and planned research in a supportive environment. Between 2021 and 2023 Miranda was the Pillar 1 (suspect focused investigations) academic lead for Operation Soteria Bluestone a UK Home Office-funded  programme designed to improve the investigation of rape and serious sexual offences (RASSO) in England and Wales. The research informed policing practice as well as government policy and developed a new National Operating Model for RASSO which was launched in June 2023.


Zeynep Kaya

Dr Zeynep Kaya is Lecturer in International Relations at the University of Sheffield since 2020 and previously worked as Research Fellow at the LSE. She previously worked at LSE. She holds a PhD in International Relations from the LSE. She is co-editor of I.B. Tauris-Bloomsbury’s book series on Kurdish studies and co-convenor of Kurdish Studies Series with the LSE Middle East Centre. She is also an Academic Associate at Pembroke College, University of Cambridge. Zeynep’s main research areas involve borderlands, territoriality, conflict, peace, political legitimacy and gender.

Zeynep has a monograph entitled Mapping Kurdistan: Territory, Self-Determination and Nationalism with Cambridge University Press and has published several peer-reviewed articles with journals such as Conflict, Security & Development, Middle East Policy, Democratisation and Ethnopolitics as well as book chapters in edited books. 

In her gender-related research, Zeynep examines contemporary peacebuilding and development policies on gender and security in Iraq and the wider Middle East and situates this examination within a long-term political and historical international context. Her most recent policy and research reports are ‘Listening to Women’s Rights Organisations: The UK’s Gender and WPS Practice in Iraq’ (2022),‘Peace and Women in Iraq: Opportunities, Challenges and Prospects for a Better Future’ (2021), ‘Feminist Peace and Security in the Middle East and North Africa’ (2020) and ‘Women, Peace and Security and Displacement in the Middle East’ (2019). She is leading a UKRI HEIF funded project on the UK’s Women, Peace and Security policy in Iraq, Afghanistan and Yemen, which started in late 2022.


Friday, 8 March, 2024 - 14:45 to 17:00
Event location: 
Seminar Rooms B3 & B4, Institute of Criminology, University of Cambridge