Skip to main content

Please note: this event has passed


Chair: Dr Amanda Chisholm, Senior Lecturer in Security Studies / Researcher in Gender and Security


  • Negah AnghaDirector for Multilateral Initiatives for the Democracy and Human Rights Directorate at the US National Security Council, White House
  • Ali Hawks, Executive Director of the Common Mission Project UK
  • Sumi Madhock, Professor of Political Theory and Gender Studies at the Department of Gender Studies, LSE
  • Malcolm Murfett is a Professor of contemporary history in the Department of War Studies at King’s College London

Following on from our successful discussion on careers outside of academia, translating your PhD into practice, this roundtable “non-traditional pathways in and out of Academia” brings together a number of accomplished professionals in higher education, government and the third sector. The focus on this discussion is to bring to light that there is no right pathway in or out of academia. Here we ask our colleagues to reflect upon their unique pathways to their current roles and the different factors and influences that led them to make particular career decision. The aim of this roundtable is to demystify and de-stabilise what a successful career trajectory and pathway looks like, and to highlight the varied ways in and out of academia.



Negah Angha is the Director for Multilateral Initiatives for the Democracy and Human Rights Directorate at the U.S. National Security Council, White House. Negah spent over 15-years with the U.S. Department of State where she represented the U.S. on complex bilateral and multilateral negotiations; advised on issues related to the G-7 and UN Security Council, peacekeeping, sanctions, counter-terrorism, and anti-corruption; and coordinated international donor and assistance efforts in Middle East and North Africa and South Asia. Originally from California, Negah holds an MA and MBA from American University and is a part-time PhD candidate at King’s College London. Most recently she was a full-time PhD student with the Department of War Studies before returning to America in 2021. During her time in London, she was a GTA with the Department of Security Studies and the Department of Theology and Religious Studies; senior editor with Strife journal; and co-founder of the Middle East Research Group (PhD working group in the Institute of Middle Eastern Studies).

Alison Hawks is the Executive Director of the Common Mission Project UK. She was previously the Director of Research at the Section 809 Panel, a US congressionally mandated commission tasked with streamlining and codifying defense acquisition. She has been an Assistant Professor at the School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University and is a Visiting Research Fellow at the School of Security Studies, King’s College London. Previously, she was a Lecturer at the Defence Studies Department, King’s College London, and has lectured in American politics at Brunel University, as well as numerous undergraduate courses in the Department of War Studies. Her doctorate thesis was in military sociology. She has published her research and given numerous presentations on her work in the U.K., U.S., and Sweden. She received her PhD from the Department of War Studies, King’s College London and her MA in Strategic Studies from the University of Leeds. She holds a BA in Political Science from the University of California, San Diego.

Sumi Madhock is Professor of Political Theory and Gender Studies at the Department of Gender Studies, LSE. Quite unusually, she is a feminist political theorist with an ethnographic sensibility. Her work combines theoretical, conceptual and philosophical investigations with detailed ethnographies of the lived experiences, processes of political subjectivation, and of subaltern political struggles for rights and justice, specifically, in South Asia. Her latest book is titled Vernacular Rights Cultures: The Politics of Origins, Human Rights and Gendered Struggles for Justice (Cambridge University Press 2021). She is also the author of Rethinking Agency: Developmentalism, Gender and Rights (2013); the co-editor of Gender, Agency and Coercion (2013); and of the Sage Handbook of Feminist Theory (2014). Professor Madhok’s scholarship goes beyond producing critiques of Eurocentrism and develops new concepts, theoretical frameworks and methodologies, which contribute to setting a new epistemic direction for the social sciences focused on knowledge production from the Global South.

Malcolm Murfett is a Professor of contemporary history in the Department of War Studies at King’s College London. While undertaking his doctoral studies in Modern History at New College, Oxford University, he was selected to be the research assistant to the Earl of Birkenhead on the officially commissioned life of Sir Winston Churchill. It proved to be a priceless opportunity since these papers were restricted to only two historians in the world at this time. Malcolm has subsequently taught at universities across four continents winning teaching awards at each of the institutions he has represented. He has written fifteen books on a range of military, strategic and political themes and was elected a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society in 1991 and became an Associate Editor of the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography in 1997. His Naval Warfare 1919-1945 is widely recognised as a pathbreaking book since it brings the element of simultaneity of action and decision making to bear in each theatre across the globe and with every combatant involved in the process. Known for his experience in Asia, Malcolm was invited in 2017 to become the series editor for Routledge’s new set of publications under the banner ‘Cold War in Asia’.

Register in advance for this meeting

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

At this event


Reader in Gender and Security


Visiting Professor


PhD Candidate