Department of Social & Policy Sciences

Dr Emma Carmel

Researcher specialising in the governance of public policy in the European Union, particularly in migration, welfare and labour market policies

Senior LecturerBA, MA, PhD

3 East 4.3
Tel: +44 (0) 1225 38 4685

Current research students
  • Thomais Massala: Governing pension fund sustainability
  • Jorge Garcia: Castro governing transnational public sector reform programmes
  • King Papiez: Polish migration to the UK and social rights portability
Recent research students


I investigate the social and political dynamics of public policy governance, and have three main areas of research.

First, theorising governance analysis, and applying this approach to explain public policy and public services developments in the EU and UK. Second, I undertake work explaining migration governance in the European Union, with particular emphasis on labour migration and social rights. Third, I am developing a new strand of research on the role of expertise and knowledge in shaping the political sociology of the European Union. I have particular methodological expertise in qualitative comparative research. My main current research project is TRANSWEL, a 3 year cross-national study of the way the welfare and social rights of migrants from within the EU are regulated and experienced transnationally.

I have supervised and co-supervised more than 10 PhD students, and have an excellent track record in on-time completions. Most of these students have gone on to significant research and academic posts, and I am always keen to hear from committed students working in my broad research area.

My other roles include editorial board membership of the Italian Journal of Social Policy, and I have also been Editor and Co-editor of the Journal of European Social Policy.

Research interests

  • Governance analysis as a new approach to the interpretation of public policy
  • The governance of migration, labour market and social policy in the UK and the EU
  • Political sociology of the European Union.

Current projects


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