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Marcelle Dawson ImageMA (RAU) DPhil (Oxon)

Head of Programme

Contact details

Room 6C16 Richardson Building
Tel +64 3 479 8113

My research platform comprises four interrelated themes, namely Social Movements and Popular Protest; Identities; Alternative Futures and Cognitive Justice. In general, I am interested in researching and teaching about social transformation, and I have a particular interest in alternatives to capitalism.


  • SOCI 102 Cultural and Social Identities
  • SOCI 310 Social Movements and Popular Protest
  • SOCI 410 Alternative Futures and the Sociological Imagination
  • SOCI 490 Dissertation

Research interests

  • Social movements and popular protest
  • Alternative futures
  • Social identities
  • Cognitive justice

Postgraduate supervision

Not accepting students until 2024

Current Postgraduate Supervision

Erin Silver (PhD, Primary supervisor)
Proposed topic: 'Creating Transformative Change: exploring the place of social service NGOs in the abolitionist movement in Aotearoa'

Dani Pickering, VUW (PhD, Co-supervisor, External)
Proposed topic: 'Tracing the evolution of the Tiriti education movement'

Shirley A'chieng (PhD Co-supervisor)
Proposed topic: "Towards an Indigenous African Approach to Counterterrorism in Kenya.”

Jule Barth (PhD, Co-supervisor)
Proposed topic: “Political Subjectivities, Knowledge and Care”

Suddhabrata Deb Roy (PhD, Primary supervisor)
Proposed topic: “The Dormant Contemporary Indian Working Women's Movements: Failure of Unions and Marxism or Inadequacy of Feminism?”

Tahere Siisiialafia (PhD, Co-supervisor)
Proposed topic: “Spirituality, Youth Advocacy and Activism: A Pacific Perspective”

Completed supervision

Samwel Oando (PhD, Co-supervisor)
Proposed topic: "Engendered Conflict Transformation: Space for African Women in Tackling Violent Extremism in Kenya" (Completed in 2022)

Mariam Abdul-Dayyem: (PhD, Primary supervisor)
"Everyday resilience: How has the journey of internet usage among Palestinians in the West Bank affected and reflected their political subjectivity?” (Completed in 2021)

Yoonjin Kim (PhD, Joint supervisor)
"Old Practices, Sports Reforms and Sports Coaches in a Quandary: Sports Coaches' Identities and the Coaching Self" (Completed in 2020)

Joe Llewellyn (PhD, Co-supervisor)
“Envisioning an Anarcho-Pacifist Peace: A case for the convergence of anarchism and pacifism and an exploration of the Gandhian movement for a stateless society” (Completed in 2018)

Amy Foster (BA Honours, Sociology)
“You're Welcome Here, but…”: Understanding the Role of Mass and Social Media in Shaping Attitudes Towards Refugees in New Zealand (Completed in 2016)

Krzysztof Jankowski (BA Honours, Sociology)
"Everyday Resistances of the Local Food Movement: Individual Action or Collective Social Change?" (Completed in 2013)

Lucert Nkuna (MA Sociology, University of Johannesburg, Primary supervisor)
"Youth Identity and Popular Culture: A study of 'The Zone', Rosebank, Johannesburg." (Completed in 2014)

Heather Tluczek (MA Development Studies, University of Johannesburg, Primary supervisor)
"Municipal Service Partnerships in KwaZulu-Natal: Comparing Water Service Provision in Etete and Kwadukuza." (Completed in 2013)

Kgopotso Khumalo (MA Sociology, University of Johannesburg, Primary supervisor)
“Perceptions and Experiences of the Urban Landless People's Movement in Acquiring Land: The Case of the Landless People's Movement in Protea South' (Completed in 2012)

Rachélle Koekemoer (MA Sociology, University of Johannesburg, Co-supervisor)|
“Community Participation in Water Service Delivery in the Vembe District, Limpopo” (Completed in 2009)

Kurai Masenyama (MA Sociology, University of Johannesburg, Co-supervisor)
“The Influence of Local Content Regulations on 'National Identity' Creation: The Case of the South African Broadcasting Corporation Television” (Completed in 2005)


Jackson, S., Sam, M., Porter, D., & Dawson, M. (2023). The well-being pandemic: Outline of a contested terrain and research agenda. Proceedings of the International Sociological Association (ISA) XX World Congress of Sociology. (pp. 343). Madrid, Spain: International Sociological Association. Retrieved from Conference Contribution - Published proceedings: Abstract

Kim, Y. J., & Dawson, M. C. (2023). Sports reforms and coaches’ spoiled identities: An analysis of structural stigma. Sociology of Sport Journal. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1123/ssj.2022-0216 Journal - Research Article

Primbs, O., & Dawson, M. C. (2023). Taking stand-up seriously: Comedy as a site for imagining decolonial futures. Sociological Inquiry. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1111/soin.12585 Journal - Research Article

Jackson, S. J., Sam, M. P., Dawson, M. C., & Porter, D. (2022). The wellbeing pandemic: Outline of a contested terrain and a proposed research agenda. Frontiers in Sociology, 7, 950557. doi: 10.3389/fsoc.2022.950557 Journal - Research Article

Dawson, M. C. (2022). Participatory action research and the study of political participation. In M. Giugni & M. Grasso (Eds.), The Oxford handbook of political participation. (pp. 329-343). New York, NY: Oxford University Press. doi: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780198861126.001.0001 Chapter in Book - Research

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