Dr Mariya Ivancheva

Senior Lecturer



Personal statement

Mariya Ivancheva is an anthropologist and sociologist of higher education and labour. Her academic and research-driven advocacy work focus on the casualisation and digitalisation of academic labour, the re/production of intersectional inequalities at universities and high-skilled labour markets, and the role of academic and student communities in broader processes of social change especially in transitions to/from socialism. She is the author of multiple peer-reviewed and book chapters, op-ed and policy reports, and has recently published the monograph The Alternative University: Lessons from Bolivarian Venezuela (Stanford University Press, 2023). 

Mariya has carried out historically grounded and theoretically informed ethnographic fieldwork and interdisciplinary mixed-method research in different regions of the world, including Eastern and Western Europe, South America and Southern Africa. As an engaged scholar she has been a member of a number of research-led platforms, working on national, international and EU-level on topics of anti-racism, labour rights, gender and financial justice, e.g. LeftEast, LevFem, Essential Autonomous Struggles Transnational (E.A.S.T.) and PrecAnthro. As a member of her anti-perecarity work, she served on the board of the European Association of Social Anthropology, as a member (2019-21) and President (2021-23).

Beyond her academic work, Mariya is a qualified psychotherapist (PGDip Counselling and Therapy, Leeds Beckett University, 2023). In her work she integrates insights and techniques from psychodynamic (psychodrama, TA), humanistic, and cognitive-behavioural paradigms. She works with specific focus on mental health provision in education- and labour-related setting and is interested in issues around the link between collective and individual mental health and wellbeing, volunteer and activist 'free' labour and burn-out, and the effects of 'flexible' capitalist organisation on personal wellbeing and public mental health provision.

Mariya has a large experience in undergraduate and postgraduate research & teaching supervision, through traditional MA & PhD routes, as well as professional doctorates and practitioner inquiry. She is happy to receive PhD / EdD inquiries on topics such as:
- Higher education, leadership and management
- Academic and teaching labour and industrial relations
- Digital education, outsourcing and automation
- Gender/race/class/intersectional inequalities and social justice in education
- Global historical and geopolitical topics in education incl. socialist and alternative university experiments

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Professional Activities

International Women's Day 2024 - Strath_Fem Feminist Book Celebration
Book Talk: The Alternative University. Lessons from Bolivarian Venezuela
Minimum service levels for teachers: Government plan to restrict strikes further undermines a profession in crisis
Book Talk: The Alternative University. Lessons from Bolivarian Venezuela
Book Talk: The Alternative University. Lessons from Bolivarian Venezuela
Book Talk: The Alternative University. Lessons from Bolivarian Venezuela

More professional activities


Who cares? Feminised labour and social reproduction in post-socialist Bulgaria
Ivancheva, Mariya (Co-investigator) Weissova, Lea (Co-investigator) Tetevenski, Stoyo (Co-investigator) Angelova, Alessandria (Co-investigator) Konstantinova, Nely (Co-investigator)
This project is sponsored by the Economic Opportunities Fund, 2023-2025, by the Alliance for Gender Equality in Europe. The study uses a qualitative research and knowledge exchange strategy to explore and render visible the different exploitative and self-exploitative aspects of care work, especially in sectors such as domestic care, social work, health care, elderly care, and nursery/primary school teaching.

Through 50 qualitative interviews with workers in these sectors in five locations across Bulgaria, the study will examine the challenges/opportunities faced by workers with regard to the de-financing of public services, ageing population and outward migration, and relation to institutional care strategies in post-socialist Bulgaria and the European Care Strategy (European Commission 2021).

Beyond researching and visibilising different norms of care work and how it is exacted and performed within families and communities, nationally and transnationally, the project also aims to work with policy-makers and trade unions to increase their understanding of the role of social reproduction and care sector for economic and social stability in every sector of society, and push for legislative change.

01-Jan-2023 - 30-Jan-2025
Care and social inequalities: public kindergarten place shortages and their impact on women in post-socialist Bulgaria
Weissova, Lea (Principal Investigator) Ivancheva, Mariya (Co-investigator) Tetevenski, Stoyo (Research Co-investigator) Eneva, Stoyanka (Research Co-investigator) Drenska, Kalina (Research Co-investigator)
A project sponsored by the Bulgarian Fund for Women.
01-Jan-2022 - 30-Jan-2022
Re/defining “Essential Work”: The Impact of the Covid-19 Pandemic on Venezuelan Migrants in Argentina
Ivancheva, Mariya (Principal Investigator) Pla, Jesica Lorena (Co-investigator)
01-Jan-2020 - 30-Jan-2022
Labour market integration of university-trained Venezuelan migrants in Argentina
Ivancheva, Mariya (Principal Investigator) Pla, Jesica Lorena (Co-investigator)
01-Jan-2019 - 01-Jan-2021
The Unbundled University: Researching Emerging Models in an Unequal Landscape
Morris, Neil (Principal Investigator) Czerniewicz, Laura (Principal Investigator) Ivancheva, Mariya (Researcher)
01-Jan-2016 - 30-Jan-2018
Equality of opportunity in action: studies in working, learning and caring
Lynch, Kathleen (Principal Investigator) Ivancheva, Mariya (Researcher)
01-Jan-2014 - 31-Jan-2017

More projects

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Dr Mariya Ivancheva
Senior Lecturer

Email: mariya.ivancheva@strath.ac.uk
Tel: Unlisted