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Dr Joanna Newman

Dr Joanna Newman

Senior Lecturer in Modern History

Vice Principal (International)

Tel +44 (0)20 7848 1738
Address K0.54, King's Building
King's College London
London, WC2R 2LS


Dr Joanna Newman studied for her PhD at the University of Southampton where she was awarded the Parkes Studentship and researched Britain, the West Indies and refuge during the 1930s and 1940s.  She studied for her MA at University College London and her BA at Middlesex University. She received a Fellowship in American Jewish History at the American Jewish Archives in Cincinnati and a postgraduate fellowship at the Centre for Advanced Study, Institute of Commonwealth Studies, London University. In 1998 she was appointed an Honorary Research Fellow at University College London. She has held academic posts at the universities of Warwick and University College London and remains an Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Southampton.  She started off as an academic and then living in Germany and the US worked as a journalist and producer (ARD, ZDF, Wall Street Journal Europe), coming back to higher education management at the British Library.  Joanna came to King’s as the Vice Principal (international) in March 2014, having been director of the UK’s Higher Education International Unit, representing all UK Higher Education Institutes in international policy and engagement.

Research interests and PhD supervision

Dr Newman’s research focuses on Jewish/non Jewish relations, refugee history, with particular reference to the role agencies had in providing relief to refugees and official British responses to refugee crises.   She has taught courses on refugee movements, the history of immigration to Britain, and courses on Jewish history and the Holocaust. Her special fields of interest include Caribbean history from seventeenth century to the twentieth, the role of relief agencies in refugee movements in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, the development of British refugee and immigration policies, and British and American attitudes to refugees and rescue during the 1930s and 1940s.  From her time at the British Library she is also interested in aspects of librarianship and digital humanities. 

Selected publications
  • ‘Refugees from Nazism in the British Caribbean’, in J.Gerber (Ed.), The Jews in the Caribbean, Littman, Oxford, 2013
  • 'The changing role of library and information services’, in R. Andrews, E. Borg, S. Davis, M Domingo, & J. England (Eds.), The SAGE handbook of digital dissertations and theses, Sage Publications, London, 2012. 
  • Postgraduate Education in the United Kingdom, (Ed), Higher Education Policy Institute and the British Library, January 2010
  • ‘Jews of Jamaica’, Jewish Renaissance Magazine, Volume 6, Issue 2, January 2007
  • Representations of the Holocaust in Film and Television from 1933, Eds., Joanna Newman & Toby Haggith, Wallflower Press, September 2005 
  • ‘The Colonial Office and British Refugee Policy in the 1930s’, in Administering Empire: The British Colonial Service in Retrospect, University of London Press, 1999.
  • Articles for Encyclopaedia of the Holocaust, The Jerusalem Publishing House, Jerusalem, 1997
Expertise and public engagement

Joanna is on the board of the School of Advanced Studies, University of London, a Council Member of the Wiener Library, and the VITAE external advisory board (regarding postgraduate education).  She regularly speaks at conferences, roundtables and on international platforms representing the UK on issues relating to Higher Education and internationalisation. She oversaw the Google Generation study at the British Library and remains involved with library studies and digital humanities.  She has written for the Wall Street Journal Europe, the Guardian and was the writer and presenter of BBC Radio 4’s The Archive Hour when she presented ‘A Caribbean Jerusalem’.

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