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Dr Natasha Saunders

Dr Natasha Saunders


Researcher profile

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Dr Saunders completed an ESRC-funded PhD in International Relations in the School in 2015, after which she worked as an Associate Lecturer before being promoted in 2019 to Lecturer of International Relations. In addition to her work within the School, Dr Saunders is also a member of the University's Sanctuary Operations Group, which coordinates and supports activities relating to St Andrews' 'University of Sanctuary' status.


Dr Saunders contributes to team teaching at Sub-Honours level, on:

  • IR2006 Studying International Relations.

Her Honours teaching includes:

  • IR3065 Refugees and International Relations
  • IR4565 Contemporary Political Theory

Dr Saunders teaches also teaches the following modules on the MLitt in International Political Theory:

  • IR5413 Topics in International Political Thought
  • IR5046 Migration and Political Theory

Research areas

Dr Saunders' research sits at the intersection of global politics and political theory, focusing on contemporary social and political thought as a framework for analysing pressing global issues. She has a particular interest in issues of forced migration, human rights, and citizenship, and in conceptualisations of, and questions about, political responsibility, social justice, political subjectivity, and agency. While interested in a range of traditions in international/global political theory, Dr Saunders has a particular interest in the work of Michel Foucault, Hannah Arendt, Iris Marion Young and Judith Butler.

Dr Saunders' doctoral research exploring the emergence and (re)conceptualisation of 'the refugee problem' was funded by the ESRC. She has recently received a Research Incentive Grant from the Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland to to detail the political activism of refugees and asylum seekers in Scotland since 1999. Her research has been published in Refugee Survey Quarterly, and The International Journal of Human Rights. Her book, International Political Theory and the Refugee Problem, was published in 2018 as part of the Routledge Research in the Global Politics of Migration series.

Dr Saunders is the Associate Editor of the Journal of International Political Theory, and is Book Review Editor for School of International Relations in-house journal Contemporary Voices: St Andrews Journal of International Relations. She acts as a peer reviewer for a number of prominent journals in her field, including: Citizenship Studies, Refugee Survey Quarterly, Journal of Refugee Studies, Journal of International Political Theory, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, and Review of International Studies.

PhD supervision

  • Aristidis Agoglossakis Foley

Selected publications


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