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Dr Alison Jobe

Associate Professor, Director of Postgraduate Research

Associate Professor, Director of Postgraduate Research in the Department of Sociology+44 (0) 191 33 46830
Fellow of the Wolfson Research Institute for Health and Wellbeing 


I first joined the Department in October 2011 as a Teaching Fellow and was appointed as an Assistant Professor in April 2012. Prior to this, I undertook research in the third sector for the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC). My research for the NSPCC focused on discourses around risk and the age of the child, and social care responses to young people. I have also worked as a research consultant for other third sector organisations including the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and the Medical Foundation for Care of Victims of Torture in the UK (now Freedom from Torture).

A longstanding research interest centres around the ongoing international academic and policy debates on the trafficking of persons, asylum seeking and migration. I first explored the emergence of trafficking as a social problem in my doctoral research, completed at Newcastle University in 2008. My doctoral research considered how trafficking was constructed through the law, the media, within academic research and by activist groups. My doctoral research specifically explored the production and reception of stories/ narratives relating to trafficking into the sex industry. Stories/ narratives told by those identified as victims were analysed alongside responses to these narratives by the police, third sector organisations, the immigration services, and in particular in UK Home Office asylum determinations. In this respect, my research explored the social consequences related to the telling of stories, as well as the social and cultural processes within which stories are and/or may be told. More recent research projects in this area include an Institute of Advance Study sponsored project: 

An Abolitionist Industrial Complex: Patterns of anti-trafficking / anti-slavery policy and practice in the 21st century (with Siobhan Mcgrath Geography, Durham University). Further details here:

Other research includes:

  • Participatory research with women who sell or swap sex in the North East. Funded by Northern Rock, with Maggie O’Neill (Cork), Colleen Bilton, Kelly Stockdale (Northumbria), Kath, Hannah and community co-researchers.
  • Research exploring Criminal Justice System responses to people with learning disabilities in cases of sexual assault/ rape. Funded by N8 Policing Research Partnership Project People and Knowledge Exchange, with Helen Williams (Sunderland); Northumbria police and Rape Crisis Tyneside and Northumberland (RCTN). Summary report, full report and presentation available here:
  • An evaluation of RSACC SELFIE (Sexualisation, Exploitation, Love, Friendship, Information and Empowerment) Young People’s Sex and Relationships Project, with Hannah King (Durham).

I work with community partners A Way Out, Changing Lives and Low Newton Prison. via the North East Sex Work Forum

Research interests

  • Anti-trafficking/ anti-modern slavery
  • Gender and Asylum law
  • Sex Work
  • Sociology of identities
  • Sociology of narratives and stories
  • Sociology of social problems
  • UK Child protection, safeguarding policy and practice
  • Participatory Research Methods


Authored book

Chapter in book

Journal Article

Other (Print)


Supervision students