Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

Clare welcomes PhD applications from students interested in the following topics: violence against women, economic violence/abuse, feminist political economy, feminist social movements, intersectionality.

Personal profile


Clare is an Assistant Professor in Criminology at Northumbria University. Her research interests centre around women’s experiences of male violence, abuse, and coercive control. Clare’s current research focuses on women’s experiences of coerced debt in the context of domestic abuse (British Academy); lawyers’ experiences of pursuing civil compensation claims for sexual violence survivors (Newcastle Law School); and women’s experiences of pedestrian underpasses in Newcastle, especially where this relates to crime, fear and perceptions of safety. Previous projects have focused on activist and third sector responses to violence against women; the impact of government austerity measures on women’s experiences of domestic and sexual violence (PhD); and online and tech-facilitated forms of harassment and abuse against feminists (British Academy). Clare’s work is interdisciplinary, adopts qualitative, ethnographic and online methodologies, and typically draws upon a feminist political economy analysis.  

Clare is module leader on a number of Criminology modules at undergraduate and postgraduate levels, including Identity and Diversity in Criminology, Intimate Partner Violence, and Social Exclusion and Victimisation in a Global Context.

Research interests

Clare's current research projects include: 

The role of coerced debt in domestic abuse contexts in Britain - this project is funded by the British Academy and uses semi-structured interviews with survivors of coerced debt, domestic abuse advocates, criminal and civil justice professionals, creditors and financial advisers to examine: (1) the occurrence of coerced debt in the context of domestic abuse; (2) survivors’ experiences of coerced debt and the consequences it has for their lives; (3) the links between coerced debt and other forms of domestic abuse; and (4) legal and financial responses to coerced debt in Britain. A feminist political economy framework guides this study, drawing attention to issues of structural gender inequality, economic insecurity, neoliberal reform, austerity and debt. 

Civil compensation claims for sexual violence - this project explores the benefits and limitations of civil law as a response to sexual violence in the UK. The research team are interviewing civil lawyers about (1) the nature and extent of civil cases for compensation brought by survivors of sexual violence; (2) access and barriers to the legal process and procedural legal problems; (3) the relationship between the civil and criminal legal systems in practice; and (4) their experiences of representing clients who may experience ongoing effects of trauma.

Pedestrian underpasses in Newcastle upon Tyne: safety, design and management - this project uses archival research, an online survey and interviews to explore people's experiences of pedestrian underpasses in Newcastle upon Tyne. Clare is particularly interested in gendered experiences of the underpasses.


In addition to researching violence against women, Clare is interested in feminist social movements, feminist political economy and intersectionality theory. Her work often extends into the community and into policy arenas at national and international levels. For instance, she has worked as a steering group member of North East Women's Network; has helped inform Police and Crime Commissioners’ strategies around violence against women; and has lobbied the UN CEDAW Committee about rising levels of violence against women in the UK.


Clare welcomes PhD applications from students interested in studying violence against women (including economic abuse and tech-facilitated abuse), feminist activism, and criminal & civil justice. 

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 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

Education/Academic qualification

Criminology, PhD

1 Jun 201231 Dec 2099

Award Date: 1 Jun 2018

Criminology, PhD

Award Date: 1 Jun 2012


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