Nafhesa Ali

Nafhesa Ali


Personal profile


I am an interdisciplinary Sociologist with expertise in everyday experiences specifically looking at gender, ethnic inequalities, intersectionality and creative methods. 


I am currently a Research Associate for the Leverhulme Trust-funded project ‘Towards Inclusive Environmental Sustainability (TIES)’ (Jan 2021 – Jan 2024; ID: 89321), led by Principal Investigator Dr Sherilyn MacGregor. This project is the first in-depth study of immigration and household sustainability in the UK. TIES examines culturally specific notions of sustainability by investigating how Global South (GS) to Global North (GN) migration and the drive for urban sustainability intersect at a household level in Manchester. This is research will contribute to new knowledge about culturally specific notions of sustainability and how newly arrived and settled migrants view, identify with, and practice sustainable behaviours.



Prior to my UoM role, I was a PDRA in the Geography Department at the University of Sheffield on an AHRC-funded project titled, ‘Storying Sexual Relationships’. This research examined young Muslims and personal relationships across Yorkshire, Tyne and Wear, and Scotland. I have two co-edited books from the project, which include the anthology A Match Made in Heaven: Young British Muslim Write about Love and Desire and Storying Relationships, and expertise in creative methods which include storying and short-film methods.


From September 2019 – January 2021, I was co-investigator on the ‘Advancing Female Literacy and Empowerment in Pakistan and India through Life-Writing’ project funded by the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) (Sep 2019 – Jan 2021) led by Professor Siobhan Lambert-Hurley in the History Department at The University of Sheffield. As project Co-Investigator, I led on the social research methods training for partners in the Global South (GS).


I received my PhD in Sociology from the University of Huddersfield in July 2015. My thesis was titled ‘Older South Asian Migrant (SAM) Women’s Experiences of Old Age and Ageing in the UK’ and explored first-generation settled migrant experiences of old age and ageing in the UK. It utilised a life course approach and intersectional framework to examine older women’s transnational positions of age.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy, The University of Huddersfield


Award Date: 15 Jul 2015

Master of Research, The University of Huddersfield


Award Date: 20 Jul 2010

Bachelor of Social Science, Psychology, Lancaster University

Award Date: 26 Jul 2004

External positions

Member, Sustainable Huddersfield - Comms, Communities and Culture working group

Member, White Rose Research Network

Areas of expertise

  • HM Sociology
  • Gender
  • Creative methods
  • Ethnic Inequalities
  • Intersectionality
  • Transnationalism
  • Environmental sustainability
  • Sexualities
  • Everyday lives

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Sustainable Futures
  • Sustainable Consumption Institute


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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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