Shruti Iyer


Shruti Iyer is a second year DPhil candidate in Socio-Legal Studies, under the supervision of Linda Mulcahy. She is a 2019 Rhodes Scholar at St Antony's College, and completed her MPhil at the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies in 2020. She is a co-convenor of the Law and Political Economy Discussion Group for 2021-22, and also convenes a fieldwork support group for scholars working on the Global South. She is an Associate Editor of Teaching and Learning on Exertions, the short-form web publication of the Society for the Anthropology of Work.  

Her doctoral project is an ethnographic study of a government welfare programme for communities affected by silicosis (an occupational lung disease) in Rajasthan, India. It asks how moral values come to influence how the state places an economic value on human life, and investigates the contestations surrounding state policy on worker health. Her MPhil examined the emergence of state compensation in India, and drew on a transnational colonial history of labour law in Britain and South Africa to understand contemporary informal workers' struggles in India. 

Shruti graduated in Politics, Philosophy and Law (2016) from King's College London, and later worked as a researcher at the Centre for Equity Studies in New Delhi. While at King's, she worked under Professor Ben Bowling as an Undergraduate Research Fellow on race relations legislation in the UK and its links to immigration and policing, as well as on the use of new technologies of law enforcement. At the Centre for Equity Studies, her research was on the Indian state's evolving relationship to sanitation workers. She also conducted fieldwork on a range of informal labour issues, and prepared teaching curricula on exclusion in contemporary India.

Shruti has worked as a TA in the Department of Political Economy at King's College London (2020-21 and 2021-22), and was awarded the Graduate Teaching Assistant Award from the School of Politics and Economics in 2021-22. 


Research Interests

Labour law; medical anthropology; extractivism; political economy; social movements; critical theory; tort law; social reproduction theory; critical approaches to human rights 

Research projects & programmes

Law and Political Economy Discussion Group