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Trans-continental lab on affects, diversity and higher education

Launching a trans-continental lab on affects, diversity and higher education

In order to share, compare and learn about the diversity work carried out by humans and educational organizations across different academic contexts and ‘diversity histories’, the project group have gathered 10 researchers from different countries and continents working within the field of affects, diversity and academia and established a trans-continental lab.

Today, diversity is staged as a challenge as well as a solution for universities and educational institutions in questions of excellence, social justice, innovation, quality e.g. However, in line with other change management activities, diversity work generates not only joy and hope for change and a happy future, but also frictions and uncomfortable atmospheres of fear and anxiety, arouses resentment as well as feelings of a lost past. These affects hit and are registered and embodied differently by different students, employees, and managers. Affects and moods energize and challenge the diversity work done in unforeseen ways even as they play together with more overall conditions of living in the current times of planetary crisis of war, pandemics, migrations flows, racism, and climate crisis

By launching an online and trans-continental, analytical advanced and empirical based laboratory, we intend to meet these issues with a timely and site-sensitive methodology.

The idea is to extend the traditional and place-based laboratory with simultaneously working online spaces where researchers situated at different sites makes academic labour together. The methodology is to do analytical experiments with a variety of data. While trying to detect the affective impulse and fixations of diversity work in education across the globe, we try out and think the data through theories and concepts of new materialism, posthumanism, poststructuralism and different strands of what has been known as ‘the affective turn’.  

The data used are produced in each participants’ independent research project. It is anonymized and cannot be used by third part.


  • Amani Hassani, PhD., sociological Review Fellow, Keele University (UK)
  • Bontu Lucie Guschke, Postdoc, Frei Universitet (DE)
  • Dorthe Staunæs, Professor, Aarhus University (DK)
  • Iram Khawaja, Associate Professor, Aarhus University (DK)
  • James Burford, Assistant Professor, University of Warwick (AU)
  • Mante Vertelyté, Postdoc, Aarhus University (DK)
  • Maree Martinussen, Professor, The University of Melbourne (AU)
  • Nicholas Hill, Postdoc, The University of Melbourne (AU)
  • Nilima Laura Chowdhury, Postdoc, University of St. Gallen (CH)
  • Octavia Calder-Dawe, Lecturer in Health Psychology, Victoria University of Wellington (NZ)