Evgenia Iliadou

Research fellow, Department of Politics, University of Surrey


With a focus on gender, Evgenia has obtained a BA in Sociology, a MA in Social Anthropology, and a PhD in Social Policy and Criminology. Her interdisciplinary PhD research centred on the EU's responses to the 2015 'refugee crisis', exploring the politics of closed borders across time and space. The primary site of her fieldwork was Greece, specifically the Greek Island of Lesvos, where she conducted in-depth interviews with forcibly displaced populations regarding their experiences of violence. 

In the period between 2020 and 2022, she worked as a postdoctoral researcher at the Department of Politics, University of Surrey, contributing to the Horizon 2020 project PROTECT: The Right to International Protection: A Pendulum between Globalization and Nativization? In this role, she managed the work package on ethnographic research in refugee camps in Greece. She conducted ethnographic research, gathered data, and carried out face-to-face interviews with vulnerable refugee populations, focusing on their experiences of vulnerability, gender, and violence. She was also involved in survey analysis exploring Civil Society Organisations' (CSOs) attitudes towards the UN notion of international protection. Additionally, she conducted an extensive literature review and historical analysis of the Greek asylum system from 1970 to the present.

Before entering academia, she worked for over a decade as an NGO practitioner in immigration detention centres and refugee camps in mainland Greece and the islands. In these roles, she provided social, emotional, practical support, and advocacy to vulnerable forcibly displaced individuals. Furthermore, she has worked at a refuge for migrant women survivors of domestic abuse, human trafficking, torture, and sexual violence. Recently, she worked as a project worker for a UK women's charity, offering face-to-face social, emotional support, empowerment and advocacy to migrant women detained at Derwentside Immigration Removal Centre (IRC) in Durham. 

Her research interests are focusing on the continuum of border violence, border controls, asylum policies, immigration detention and deportation across time and space, medicalisation of borders, border deaths, migration governance, vulnerability.

Research projects & programmes

Border Criminologies