SOAS University of London

School of Interdisciplinary Studies

School of Interdisciplinary Studies Staff

Dr Dina Matar
Research Coordinator
Head of School
Dina Matar: Centre for Media and Film Studies

Middle East, especially Palestine, Syria, Jordan and Lebanon, international political communication; media and conflict; critical global media studies; activism and media; social movements; memory studies and oral history; diasporas and ethnic minorities.

  • Tel: +44 (0)207 898 4696
  • Email:
  • Room: 575
  • Academic Support Hours: Mondays 1-3pm
Dr Awino Okech
Learning & Teaching Director
Awino Okech

Africa - Critical gender theory on sexuality, queer politics, security and violent extremism, gender in nation and state making, social movements.
Qualitative research methods and feminist research methodology 

  • Email:
  • Room: 4403
  • Academic Support Hours: By appointment only

Dr Matti Pohjonen
Student Experience Director
Matti Pohjonen

East Africa, with a focus on Ethiopia; critical theory; digital anthropology; digital methods; social media and conflict; online extremism and hate speech; big data and artificial intelligence.

Dr Gina Heathcote
Doctoral Studies Director
Gina Heathcote

International feminist legal theories; International Law especially laws on the use of force; collective security; political and legal theories; law of the sea; gender and conflict

  • Tel: +44 (0)20 7898 4367
  • Email:
  • Room: S344
  • Academic Support Hours: Tuesdays 9:30- 11:30

Dr Dan Plesch
Recruitment, Admissions & Marketing Director
Dan Plesch

Applied International Relations, weapons of mass destruction, diplomacy, globalisation and corporate accountability, globalisation and democracy, globalisation and energy, the role of international non-governmental organisations, the United Nations and the Nazis.

  • Tel: +44 (0)20 7898 4841
  • Email:
  • Room: 4417
  • Academic Support Hours: By appointment
Dr Somnath Batabyal
Chair of the Centre for Global Media and Communication
Somnath Batabyal

South Asia with a focus on India; transnational news spheres with a special focus on India; Development discourses in India and its articulation in mainstream and alternate news forums; environmental politics.

Dr J. Simon Rofe
Digital Learning Director
Simon Rofe Profile Picture

Dr J Simon Rofe is the inaugural director of CISD's Global Diplomacy Masters distance learning programme.  Prior to joining SOAS he was Distance Learning Director at the University of Leicester managing a suite of four International Relations Programmes.

Professor Michael W. Charney
Research Director
Mike Charney
The history of Buddhist societies in South and Southeast Asia and of culture, technology, and warfare in colonial Africa and Asia
  • Tel: 020 7898 4612
  • Email:
  • Room: 322
  • Academic Support Hours: Thursday 5:00-7:00 pm