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Sarah is a doctoral candidate in the Department of War Studies. She holds a BA (first class) in History from Anglia Ruskin University and an MPhil in History. For the latter, she wrote her thesis on the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force and their work in British Air Intelligence in the Second World War, and carried out extensive research on military intelligence behind major RAF operations during this period, including the Battle of Britain, the Dambusters Raid, the Thousand Bomber Raids and the discovery of the V Weapons. She is very interested in recovering the history of women in intelligence work, an element that is often missing from existing research on the intelligence world.

Sarah is the leader of WIWIP (Women in War and International Politics) a department-led initiative that seeks to give greater visibility to the achievements of women in the fields of War Studies, International Politics, Security and Defence, and works closely with the department’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Committee in this capacity.


Research Interests

  • Intelligence History
  • Military History
  • Women’s History
  • Naval Intelligence
  • Military Intelligence
  • Women and Intelligence
  • Women in the Military
  • Second World War



The Contribution of the WRNS and the WAVES to British and American Naval Intelligence in the Second World War


Sarah's research considers the Women’s Royal Naval Service and its’ American equivalent, the WAVES, aiming to identify and evaluate the work carried out by the women in these services in the field of Naval Intelligence from 1939-1945. It will identify key operations and battles, including (but not limited to) the Battle of the Atlantic, Operation Overlord, Midway and the US amphibious landings in the Pacific, and will determine what exactly the WRNS and WAVES did behind the scenes in these instances to collect and disseminate vital naval intelligence that culminated in operational decisions and directly contributed to the outcome of these events. In doing so, it aims to re-evaluate these individual battles and operations and in turn, to place them in the wider context of and re-evaluate the Allied victory in 1945.


Professor Joe Maiolo