Policy and Social Change

Hosted by the International Inequalities Institute, the Atlantic Fellows for Social and Economic Equity, the Atlantic Institute

Online public event


Professor Ricky Burdett

Professor Ricky Burdett

Dr Amara Enyia

Dr Amara Enyia

Tracy Jooste

Tracy Jooste

Dr Robtel Neajai Pailey

Dr Robtel Neajai Pailey


Dr Armine Ishkanian

Dr Armine Ishkanian

The world is facing multiple crises that are responsible for widening economic and social inequalities and insecurities, ranging from climate change to the COVID-19 pandemic. Over the past decade, movements such as Black Lives Matter, Extinction Rebellion, Occupy, and the Indignados have confronted States and elites, challenged inequalities and mobilised to bring about greater justice, democracy, and progressive policy changes. This panel brings together speakers who are working at the intersection of research and policy to discuss the question: what is the relationship between policy and social change?

Drawing on their research and practice and in conversation with each other, Atlantic Institute’s Leaders in Residence, Amara Enyia and Tracy Jooste, and LSE academics Robtel Neajai Pailey and Ricky Burdett will consider how in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic we can not only build back better, but also build differently.

Meet our speakers and chair

Ricky Burdett (@BURDETTR) is Professor of Urban Studies at LSE’s Department of Sociology and Director of LSE Cities, a global centre of research and teaching at LSE which received the Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education 2016-18.

Amara Enyia (@AmaraEnyia) is the Manager of Policy and Research with the Movement for Black Lives and founder of Global Black. She is also a strategist and public policy expert working on local and national policy as well as international affairs and foreign policy. She holds Bachelor’s degrees in journalism and political science, a Master’s degree in education, a law degree, and a PhD in Education Policy with a focus on Evaluation Methodology.

Tracy Jooste is a Senior Atlantic Fellow for Social and Economic Equity, with expertise in urban governance, water, sanitation and housing policy. She has held senior positions in civil society, the private sector and government, where she served as Director for Policy and Research in the Provincial Government of the Western Cape in South Africa. She is a Mandela Washington Fellow and a board member of Isandla Institute, a non-profit that promotes democratic and inclusive city governance.

Robtel Neajai Pailey (@RobtelNeajai) is an Assistant Professor in International Social and Public Policy at the Department of Social Policy at LSE. A Liberian scholar-activist working at the intersection of Critical Development Studies, Critical African Studies and Critical Race Studies, Robtel centres her research on how structural transformation is conceived and contested by local, national and transnational actors from ‘crisis’-affected regions of the so-called Global South.

Armine Ishkanian (@Armish15) is Executive Director of the Atlantic Fellows for Social and Economic Equity programme at the International Inequalities Institute and Associate Professor in the Department of Social Policy. Her research focuses on the relationship between civil society, democracy, development, and social transformation.

More about this event

The International Inequalities Institute (@LSEInequalities) at LSE brings together experts from many of the School's departments and centres to lead cutting-edge research focused on understanding why inequalities are escalating in numerous arenas across the world, and to develop critical tools to address these challenges.

The Atlantic Fellows for Social and Economic Equity programme (@AFSEE_LSE) is a Global South-focused, funded fellowship for mid-career activists, policy-makers, researchers and movement-builders from around the world. Based at the International Inequalities Institute, it is a 20-year programme that commenced in 2017 and was funded with a £64m gift from Atlantic Philanthropies, LSE’s largest ever philanthropic donation.

The Atlantic Institute, based in Oxford in the UK, provides Atlantic Fellows and staff with the networks, architecture and resources to connect, learn and act to address the underlying systemic causes of inequity – locally and globally.

The Department of Social Policy provides top quality international and multidisciplinary research and teaching on social and public policy challenges facing countries across the world.

LSE Cities is an international centre carrying out research, education, advisory and outreach activities in London and abroad.

This event forms part of LSE’s Shaping the Post-COVID World initiative, a series imagining what the world could look like after the crisis, and how we get there.

Twitter Hashtag for this event: #LSEPostCOVID

Podcast & Video

A podcast of this event is available to download from Policy and Social Change.

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