Professor Louise Ryan

Louise Ryan, Professorial Research Fellow, Department of Sociological StudiesLouise-Ryan

Louise Ryan joined the University of Sheffield as a Professorial Research Fellow in autumn 2016. Her research expertise is in the area of migration, social networks, gender and religion.

Louise was elected a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in 2015, as recognition for her contribution to intra-EU migration research. Also in 2015, her work on migration was recognised internationally when Louise was named on a list of leading international researchers on migration. Louise is interested in a broad range of topics around migration, particularly intra-EU migration. She has worked on highly skilled migrants in London’s financial sector, an ESRC-funded study with Dr Jon Mulholland.   She has also worked on an European funded project (FP7) with Prof Eleonore Kofman on gender and migration in the EU – GEMMA.

Over the last decade, much of Louise’s work has focused on new migration from East/ central London – especially Polish migrants – which was funded through several ESRC awards and a Heritage Lottery grant.  Louise has also worked on Irish migration, both historically through oral history research projects with older Irish migrants, and in more recent years through a study on highly qualified Irish migrants in the post-recession era.

Louise has worked with community partners and local stake holders on a Dept of Communities and Local Government funded, longitudinal project, on Engaging Muslim Youth in Barnet.  Arising from that study, Louise also published several articles on working with Muslim groups.


Video cast on latest journal article:

Looking for Weak Ties: Using a Mixed Methods Approach to Capture Elusive Connections (2016)

(Source: The Sociological Review)


Some books relevant to Migration research:

Ryan, L. U. Erel and A. D’Angelo (2015) Migrant Capital: Networks, Identities, Strategies, Palgrave Publisher.

Ryan, L. and W. Webster (eds) Gendering Migration: Masculinity, Femininity and Ethnicity in Post-War Migration to Britain (Ashgate Publishers 2008).

Recent articles:

Ryan, Louise. “Looking for weak ties: using a mixed methods approach to capture elusive connections.” The Sociological Review (2016).

Ryan, Louise, Magdalena Lopez Rodriguez, and Paulina Trevena. “Opportunities and Challenges of Unplanned Follow-up Interviews: Experiences with Polish Migrants in London.” Forum Qualitative Sozialforschung/Forum: Qualitative Social Research. Vol. 17. No. 2. 2016.

Ryan, L. and E. Kurdi (2015) “‘Always up for the craic’: young Irish professional migrants narrating ambiguous positioning in contemporary Britain’ Social Identities, 21(3).

Ryan, L. (2015). ‘”Inside” and “Outside” of What or Where? Researching Migration Through Multi-Positionalities’, Forum: Qualitative Social Research, 16 (2)

Ryan, L., Von Koppenfels, A. K. and Mulholland, J. (2015), ‘The distance between us’: a comparative examination of the technical, spatial and temporal dimensions of the transnational social relationships of highly skilled migrants. Global Networks. doi: 10.1111/glob.12054.

Ryan and Mulholland (2014) ‘French Connections: The networking strategies of French highly skilled migrants in London’ Global Networks, 14 (2): 148-166 DOI: 10.1111/glob.12038

Ryan, Mulholland and Agoston (2014) ‘Talking Ties: reflecting on network visualisation and qualitative interviewing’ Sociological Research Online,

Ryan, L. (2013) ”Islam does not change’: young people narrating negotiations of religion and identity’ Journal of Youth StudiesDOI:10.1080/13676261.2013.834315.

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