Skip to main content

Language, (In)security and Everyday Practice (LIEP)

LIEP is an interdisciplinary collaboration between sociolinguists and researchers in peace, conflict and security studies. It seeks to connect ethnographic descriptions of language and situated practice with critical accounts of the growing significance of geopolitical conflict and insecurity in everyday life.

Our work links everyday communication to processes such as:

  • securitisation
  • surveillance
  • peace and conflict resolution
  • war and post-conflict
  • radicalisation and counter-extremism
  • immigration and mobility

LIEP was established in 2017 with support from the British Academy and the Faculty of Social Science & Public Policy at King's. We produce publications, bibliographies and research training materials, organise seminars and work on funded research projects with UK and European researchers.


Didier Bigo is professor at King’s College London department of War Studies and research professor of international relations at Sciences-Po Paris/CERI. His works focuses on critical approaches to security in Europe and the relation between internal and external security, as well as on sociology of terrorism, antiterrorism and practices of surveillance.

Constadina Charalambous is Assistant Professor in Language Education & Literacy at the European University Cyprus. Her research interests focus on language teaching and learning in relation to larger cultural and socio-political ideologies, and more specifically on language education in contexts of conflict and insecurity. She has also conducted research on peace education initiatives in Cyprus using linguistic ethnography as methodological apparatus.

Panayiota Charalambous has conducted linguistic ethnographic research in the context of Greek-Cypriot education in conflict-affected Cyprus. Her interest in questions of language, (in)securitisation and the everyday relates specifically to her work in the areas of Turkish language teaching and learning (Turkish being the language of the 'other' community); and peace education practices (cultivating peaceful relations and working with the traumas of the past).

Louise Eley is a doctoral student in the Centre for Language, Discourse and Communication, King's College London. Her PhD thesis looks at diversity, gentrification and surveillance through an ethnographic investigation of life around public signs in a district of Frankfurt am Main, Germany.

Rebekka Friedman is Lecturer of International Relations in the Department of War Studies, King's College London. Her four main areas of research interest are Reconciliation, healing and trauma, Gender and peace-building, Transitional justice and Collective memory and identity politics.

Vivienne Jabri is Lecturer of International Relations in the Department of War Studies, King's College London. Her research interests include critical and poststructural theories of politics and international relations, war and political violence in the government of populations, cosmopolitanism and the ‘international’ as political space and gender and feminist theory.

Kamran Khan is Research Associate at the University of Leicester. His research interests are in citizenship, language testing, multilingualism and language in security contexts.

Erez Levon is Reader in Sociolinguistics in the Department of Linguistics at Queen Mary University of London. His research focuses on how people use everyday sociolinguistic practice to navigate terrains of psychological tension and societal conflict, particular as these relate to the lived experience of gender, sexuality and national belonging. He has conducted fieldwork on these topics in Israel/Palestine and South Africa.

Emma McCluskey is a postdoctoral Research Associate at the Department of War Studies, King's College London. Her research interests include refugees and migrants in the European Union, ethnographic approaches to Critical Security Studies, the relationship between hospitality and security, and reconfiguring International Political Sociology along more anthropological lines.

Maria O’Reilly is Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the School of Politics and International Relations, at Queen Mary University of London. Her research examines gender and agency in (post-)conflict contexts. Maria is particularly interested in exploring the lived reality of armed conflict, and embodied, situated experiences of (in)justice and (in)security, as articulated within sites of post-conflict peace and security interventions.

Ben Rampton is Professor of Applied & Sociolinguistics in the Centre for Language Discourse & Communication at King’s. He is an interactional sociolinguist focusing on urban multilingualism, and he edits Working Papers in Urban Language & Literacies. He was founding Chair of the Linguistic Ethnography Forum (2001-09), and Director of the King’s Interdisciplinary Social Science Doctoral Training Centre (2011-14).

Project status: Ongoing

Contact us

Get in touch with LIEP and find out more about our work: