Kate Hardy



PhD, Queen Mary, University of London
MRes, The University of Liverrpool
BA, The University of Sheffield


2016 ongoing: Associate Professor in Work and Employment Relations
2012-2016: Lecturer in Work and Employment Relations
2011-2012: Researcher Cosmetic Surgery Tourism
2010-2011: Researcher The Mainstreaming of Lap Dancing (all at the University of Leeds)

Visiting positions at:
2009 - School of Management and Labour Relations, Rutgers University, New Jersey
2007 Centre for Gender and Excellence, Orebro University, SwedenMy overarching research considers issues of gender, work, employment and collective organising from a Marxist-Feminist perspective. My ESRC funded doctoral work focused on the organising strategies of AMMAR, the Argentinean sex workers union. It used a collaborative approach to explore the experiences of collectively organising, examining the role of the state, connections with broader trade unions and the place of sex work in the wider political economy of Argentina.

In 2010-2011 I worked with Teela Sanders on the ESRC-funded project The Regulatory Dance which examined the apparent expansion and mainstreaming of strip clubs in the UK high street. We found working conditions to be poor in strip clubs and argued that dancers tended to use dancing as part of wider future orientated career plans. This project had wide ranging impact and became an impact case study. For more information: http://www.researchcatalogue.esrc.ac.uk/grants/RES-000-22-3163/read

In 2015, I was the Co-PI on a Feminist Review Trust funded study The Beginning of the End of the Housing Crisis: participatory action research with Focus E15 in East London. Focus E15 is a housing campaign in east London led by young working class women from the borough of Newham. Using questionnaires and interviews, this research project sought to gather information that will enable activists to better resist the removal of individuals and families from the borough and to demand the right to decent housing for all. Each week many Newham residents visit the campaign stall and tell activists the stories of their struggles to be housed and remain in Newham. This project enabled the activists to capture these stories and generate an evidence base to contest displacement. 

My research interests include issues surrounding sex work; the body and work; disability; gender and work; black, informal and underground economies; paid and unpaid work and labour; theorising work and labour; labour organising and social movements.; trade union organizing; women's movements; disability; agency and resistance. I additionally have interests in other forms of struggle, including feminist and housing movements.

I am interested in supervising doctoral students with interests in any of the above.My teaching interests lie in the fields of sex work, gender and development, work and employment, sexuality, and qualitative research methods. My teaching is widely interdisciplinary and I have taught in Sociology and Geography departments, as well Management and Business Schools.

I currently teach on modules: Strategic HRM (BA), Research Methods (MA), Diversity Management (MA and BA) , all in LUBS and Contested Bodies (MA) and Queerying Sexualities (MA) in the Centre for Interdisciplinary Gender Studies (CIGS).

Current postgraduate researchers