Project summary

Bringing together leading scholars from the University of Warsaw and the University of Sheffield, our project uses the lens of migration to examine key dynamics in modern Polish society and uses the transnational field to explore the interconnections between Poland and Britain. While there have been many interesting events and lectures about Poland in London and the South-East of England, our proposal will provide an important opportunity to develop understandings of Poland in Sheffield, the wider Yorkshire region and the North of England. The unfolding consequences of Brexit will form an important backdrop to our programme of events.


Principal Investigator
Professor Louise Ryan

Professorial Research Fellow in the Department of Sociological Studies at the University of Sheffield. Louise joined the University of Sheffield in 2016, having previously been Professor of Sociology at Middlesex University, London. Louise’s research expertise is in the area of migration, social networks, gender and religion.  Louise was elected a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in 2015, and she is currently chair of the editorial board of the journal Sociology. Her most recent publication examines the concept of ‘differentiated embedding’ in relation to Polish migrants in the UK (published in Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 2017,

Dr Majella Kilkey

Reader in Social Policy in the Department of Sociological Studies at the University of Sheffield and Co-Director (with Louise Ryan) of the Faculty of Social Sciences Migration Research Group. She researches at the intersection of migration and family studies. She is Co-Editor of the journal Social Policy and Society. Most recently she has published an article in Journal of Social Policy (2017) exploring the potential impact of Brexit on EU-citizen migrants’ family rights, and has co-edited a special issue in Journal of Family Studies (2018) on the Social Reproductive Worlds of Migrants.

Dr Aneta Piekut

Lecturer in Quantitative Methods at the Sheffield Methods Institute since 2014. In 2010-2014, she worked as a post-doctoral researcher for LIVEDIFFERENCE research programme at the Universities of Leeds and Sheffield. In 2005-2010, she was involved in comparative migration studies in the Centre of Migration Research, University of Warsaw. Aneta’s research expertise includes international migration, social cohesion and quantitative data analysis in the field of migration and ethnic relations. Her most recent publication explores the importance of various social spaces in shaping attitudes towards minority ethnic groups, in a comparative perspective, in the UK and Poland (published in Social Science Research, 62,

Laura Foley

A doctoral researcher in the Department of Politics at the University of Sheffield. She has received a European Research Council PhD Studentship to conduct research on labour migration governance in Southeast Asia as part of the Prospects for International Migration Governance (MIGPROSP) project. Laura is the Administrator of the Migration Research Group at the University of Sheffield. Laura has previously worked for the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants (JCWI) in London where she was involved in organising campaigns such as the ‘I am an Immigrant’ campaign. She also collaborated with the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) to develop the global ‘I am a Migrant’ campaign.

Professor Izabela Grabowska

Professor at University of Social Sciences and Humanities in Warsaw and the Director of the Interdisciplinary Doctoral School (three faculties, four disciplines, 340 PhD students). She is IMISCOE Coordinator at the Centre of Migration Research, University of Warsaw. She is Deputy Chair of IMISCOE Research Network Board of Directors and member of the Executive Board. She took part in the international research consortia of 6 FP of the EU: in IDEA Project (coordinated labour market part) and PROMINSTAT (external expert). Currently she is the national expert of ESCO classification. She publishes internationally on labour market, social and geographical mobility and development with social remittances. Her latest co-authored monograph Migrants as Agents of Change. Social Remittances in an Enlarged European Union (2017, Palgrave) analyses in depth the non-material aspects of development with human agency at the forefront. More at:

Professor Paweł Kaczmarczyk

Director of the Centre of Migration Research at the University of Warsaw and an assistant professor at the Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw; IZA and TFMI (Transcontinental Forum on Migration and Integration) fellow, and SOPEMI correspondent for Poland at OECD. His main research areas include causes and consequences of labour migration (with special attention paid to analysis of migration processes in CEE countries), highly skilled mobility, methodology of migration research, labour economics, population economics and demography, international economics and migration policy. He is the author of many publications concerning those areas.

Dr Anna Rosińska-Kordasiewicz

A sociologist interested in migration, integration and transformations of social relationships, working as an Assistant Professor at the Centre of Migration Research at the University of Warsaw, in the Polish NSC funded “Unfinished migration transition and ageing population in Poland”. She specializes in qualitative research and analysis, she also has experience with participatory approaches. In 2016, she led the project “Londoner – Pole – Citizen” that reached out to Polish youth in the London Borough of Lewisham. Her recent publications include a co-authored paper on the elderly care in transnational families:

Dr Michał Bilewicz

Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of Warsaw, Poland, where he chairs the Center for Research on Prejudice. Previously, he was a Fulbright scholar at the New School for Social Research in New York and DAAD post-doctoral fellow at University of Jena, Germany. His research interests include conspiracy theories, reconciliation processes, dehumanization, prejudice, and collective moral emotions. In 2013, he co-edited a special issue of Journal of Social Issues on the consequences of genocide and, in 2015, a volume The Psychology of Conspiracy (Routledge). He co-ordinates the first Polish diagnostic survey on xenophobia – the nationally representative Polish Prejudice Survey. He presented his reports on anti-Semitism to the Polish Parliament (Ethnic Minorities Commission) and, in 2013-2016, he was a consultant to the Polish Ministry of Administration in the Council to Prevent Racism and Xenophobia.

Dr Sabina Toruńczyk-Ruiz

A social psychologist with sociological orientation. In 2016, she defended her doctoral thesis in psychology on the relationship between social diversity and neighbourhood attachment. She is also interested in the social capital of migrants, intergroup relations and migrants’ integration, and integrating quantitative and qualitative research methods. She holds also a MA degree in social and cultural anthropology, obtained at the Free University of Amsterdam. In 2015, she stayed as a guest researcher at the WZB in Berlin in the team Migration and Diversity. She is affiliated with the CMR since 2009. She is an adjunct at the Faculty of Psychology, University of Warsaw.

Dr Michał Garapich

Currently a visiting scholar at the Centre of Migration Research, University of Warsaw. He is a social anthropologist with over 10 years of research experience looking in particular at issues of urban diversity, migration from Central and Eastern Europe in the wake of EU enlargements, homelessness, class and resistance. He also conducted research on land invasions in the Andes and is currently looking at the migration experience of Polish Roma. Among his recent publications is Garapich M. (2016) London’s Polish Borders. Transnationalizing Class and Ethnicity among Polish migrants in London. Ibidem, Stuttgart; (monograph).

POLIN Museum

POLIN Museum is the first public-private partnership in Poland, created jointly by the government, the local government, and a non-governmental organization. Its mission is to recall and preserve the memory of the history of Polish Jews, contributing to the mutual understanding and respect amongst Poles and Jews as well as other societies of Europe and the world.

Magdalena Dopieralska

A graduate of the University of Warsaw, at the POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews she coordinates POLIN Meeting Point programme – the summer school for Polish, German, Israeli and Ukraianian university students and other educational activities for adults. She is also a co-curator of the medieval gallery of POLIN Museum Core Exhibition.

Anna Pokłosiewicz

An expert on cultures and promoter of culture, a graduate of the University of Warsaw’s Institute of Polish Culture. At the POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews, she coordinates educational activities for adults and the Polish-Israeli student exchange programme. Apart from her museum work, she is also involved in film education.

Joanna Andrysiak

Graduated from University of Warsaw, Jagiellonian University, and Université Paris-Sorbonne in cultural and film studies and recently completed a postgraduate program “Exhibiting Contemporary History” at Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena. She works in the research and publications department at the POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews, specializing in academic and scholarly programs. She has published articles on Israeli cinema, film, and artistic projects using found footage.