One year MSc in Policy Analysis and Evaluation followed by a three year PhD. 

About meTURNER Lewis

Before starting my PhD, I studied for an MSc in Middle East Politics, also at SOAS, which I was awarded with distinction. I also hold a first class BA Hons in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from New College, University of Oxford, from which I graduated in 2009. During the first year of my studentship, in addition to my PhD studies at SOAS, I wrote an academic article based on my MSc dissertation, which was published in September 2015 in Mediterranean Politics. With the support of the Research Support Training Grants, I also attended a variety of in-depth training programmes and academic conferences, which greatly enhanced my research methods training and my ability to familiarise myself with, and network within, the academic community.

My research

My research studies the production of masculinities in the context of Syrian refugee communities in Jordan. This research will involve an exploration of the following themes: how masculinities change in situations of displacement; how the humanitarian governance that many Syrians are now subject to incorporates certain understandings of gender; how the humanitarian regime impacts understandings of masculinities among refugees; and how our understandings of humanitarian governance and power can be enhanced through an exploration of gender and masculinities. This research is based on fieldwork being conducted in Jordan from September 2015 – August 2016, and will use ethnographic study as well as more structured interviews to collect its data.

The difference my research makes

My research will offer a valuable contribution to a number of academic fields: gender in the Middle East, in which masculinities are extremely understudied; the governance of refugees and refugee camps; the politics of displacement, in which gender in general, and masculinities in particular, are rarely the focus of study; and the emerging literature on the consequences of the Syrian civil war, specifically the mass displacement it entailed. More fundamentally, my research is a study of power and governmentality. It seeks to understand how governance operates in a context characterized by dramatic inequalities of resources, status, and movement, and how that governance affects, and is contested by, a population many of whose members will be subject to a disempowering, authoritarian regime, yet simultaneously privileged by other axes of differentiation.

I furthermore hope that my research to influence policy-makers, NGOs and humanitarian organisations working with refugee communities. I have  begun to develop contacts with several organisations that are interested in engaging in conversations about masculinities among refugee communities so that they can incorporate these ideas into their work, for example on issues such as sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV).


Professor Laleh Khalili: https://www.soas.ac.uk/staff/staff36189.php.
My second supervisor is Dr. Rahul Rao, and my third supervisor Dr. Tania Kaiser


Turner, L (2015) Explaining the (Non-)Encampment of Syrian Refugees: Security, Class and the Labour Market in Lebanon and Jordan, Mediterranean Politics, vol. 20 (3). DOI: 10.1080/13629395.2015.1078125

External links

Academia.edu profile: https://soas.academia.edu/LewisTurner
SOAS profile: https://www.soas.ac.uk/staff/staff102034.php
Article in Mediterranean Politics: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/13629395.2015.1078125