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Dr John Clayton

Associate Professor

Department: Geography and Environmental Sciences

John graduated from the University of Leicester in 1997 with a degree in BA (Hons) Geography and Social and Economic History, followed by a research-based MSc degree in Human Geography at the same institution.

In 2002, after a short break from academia, he started an ESRC/ODPM PhD in the Department of Geography at Durham University, examining everyday geographies of multiculturalism amongst young people in the city of Leicester, England.

John then went on to work as a Research Associate on two large projects at the University of Sunderland, firstly exploring the learning and socio-cultural experiences of working-class students in higher education (ESRC) followed by digital inclusion/exclusion in Sunderland, England (DCLG).  

In 2009 John took up a Lectureship in Sociology and Social Policy at the University of Sunderland in the Department of Social Sciences and arrived at Northumbria University in October 2013 as a Senior Lecturer in Human Geography. He is now an established member of the Department of Geography and Environmental Sciences, contributing through both research and teaching.  

John Clayton

I am a critical social geographer, interested in the connections between space, identities and inequalities. In my work I draw on a range of approaches and methods that explore the ways in which unequal socio-spatial relations are contested, navigated and negotiated. My inter-disciplinary and collaborative work is widely published through a diversity of outputs including international geography, sociology and social science journals.

I have researched several inter-related topics including the emotions of austerity and digital exclusion, but my work mainly centres around geographies of ‘race’, ethnicity and multiculture, particularly in the British context. My interests in this area were established through my ESRC/ODPM PhD exploring everyday geographies of multiculture amongst young people living in the city of Leicester. I was able to extend these interests (and intersections with classed identities) working as a Research Associate on an ESRC project exploring the cultural and learning experiences of working-class students in Higher Education.

More recently I have examined the experience of work for ‘new migrants’ in North East England (British Academy/Leverhulme), the experiences of the Zimbabwean diaspora in a post-Mugabe era and the reporting of intersectional hate crime/incidents. Through ongoing research with academic colleagues and practice-based partners, we propose the concept of ‘hate relationships’ to capture forms of ‘low level’, enduring and home-concentrated hate incidents and the forces which re-produce them. Relatedly, other current interests are around processes and experiences of home takeovers or ‘cuckooing’ and the diversity of ways in which homes might become colonised as well as pedagogical research exploring the value of self-reflection in teaching and learning our undergraduate modules including ‘Geographies of ‘race’, ethnicity and multiculture’.

  • Please visit the Pure Research Information Portal for further information
  • Disability, Mate Crime, and Cuckooing (Home Takeovers), Macdonald, S., Clayton, J., Donovan, C. 22 Feb 2024, Disability Hate Crime: Known Harms and Future Directions
  • Experiencing (dis)comforting pedagogies: learning critical geography beyond the here and now, Clayton, J., Griffin, P., Mowl, G. 14 Mar 2024, In: Journal of Geography in Higher Education
  • ‘He Made Us a Bit Suicidal to be Honest’: Disability Studies, Hate and Victimisation, Macdonald, S., Donovan, C., Clayton, J. 22 Feb 2024, Mental Health, Crime and Justice
  • Applied (im)mobilities in turbulent times: transdisplinarity, creativity and mobility justice, Clayton, J., Wilson, S. 23 Sep 2023, In: Applied Mobilities
  • Domestic colonisation: the centrality of the home in experiences of home takeovers and hate relationships, Clayton, J., Donovan, C., Macdonald, S. 11 Dec 2023, In: Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers
  • ‘I may be left with no choice but to end my torment’: disability and intersectionalities of hate crime, Macdonald, S., Donovan, C., Clayton, J. 2 Jan 2023, In: Disability and Society
  • Re-conceptualising Repeat Reports of Hate Crime/Incidents as Hate Relationships Based on Coercive Control and Space for Action, Donovan, C., Macdonald, S., Clayton, J. 1 Jun 2023, In: Sociological Research Online
  • Why we need to rethink our approach to hate, Clayton, J., Donovan, C., Hall, E. 16 Feb 2023
  • Becoming cuckooed: conceptualising the relationship between disability, home takeovers and criminal exploitation, Macdonald , S., Donovan, C., Clayton, J., Husband, M. 4 May 2022, In: Disability & Society
  • Diasporic reorientations: Emotional geographies of the Zimbabwean diaspora in a post Mugabe era, Clayton, J., Manyena, B. 18 Nov 2022, In: Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies

  • Matthew Durey Postindustrial identities in the cultural and creative industries: exploring Newcastle upon Tyne and Hamburg Start Date: 01/10/2015 End Date: 16/09/2019
  • Kahina Meziant Forced Migration and Anticolonial Geographies of Regrounding: An Ethnography of the Voluntary and Community Sector in North East England Start Date: 06/06/2019 End Date: 27/01/2023

  • Geography PhD October 01 2002
  • Fellow (FHEA) Higher Education Academy (HEA) 2016


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