Michal P. Garapich
  • 203 Hirst, Digby Stuart

Accepting PhD Students


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Personal profile


I am a social anthropologist specializing in the issues of migration, ethnicity, nationalism, multiculturalism, substance misuse, homelessness and migration from Poland.

My PhD (Jagiellonian University, Krakow) focused on the political and symbolic dimensions of the relationship between different waves and groups of Polish migrants in the UK and Italy, the practices of de-territorialized nation state, power relations within diasporic/ethnic associations and negotiations of ethnicity and whiteness. Since 2005 I have‚ conducted numerous research projects using both quantitative as well as ethnographic qualitative methods exploring various aspects of life of migrants from Accession States (EU10) in the UK, as well as migrants from Africa. I have done research and published (with almost 2000 citations, according to Publish or Perish, with h-index 19) on homelessness, social remittances, ethnicity, identity and diasporic politics. My research was funded by London local government (among others: Hammersmith & Fulham, Redbridge, Lewisham, Waltham Forest, Greenwich), the European Commission, Research Councils (ESRC, National Centre for Science in Poland), media (BBC Newsnight, Channel 4), think tanks (IPPR, Institute of Public Affairs, Warsaw) and charitable trust (Southlands Methodist Trust). In 2015 I also conducted fieldwork in Peru, looking at land invasions in the Andes, a study funded by Santander Bank.

At the moment my work focuses on homelessness, and constructions of race among migrants from Poland, in particular recent rise in far right groups among Polish migrants. In cooperation with University of Warsaw, I also explore the migration patterns and identity of Polish Roma in England.

Besides academic articles published in four languages, I am a regular contributor to the media in Poland and Britain, having commented for the Economist, The Guardian, BBC, LBC radio, The Times. I have published opinion pieces in The Independent and Haaretz, as well as contributing to the LSE Brexit blog. I am also a co-editor of Przeglad Polonijny-Studia Migracyjne, a peer-reviewed journal published by the Polish Academy of Sciences.

I teach 'Contemporary Urban LIfe', 'Londonopolis - exploring the global city' (for students on Study Abroad programme) and ‘Living in the Mobile World. Migration, Transnationalism and Diversity’. For 3rd Year students I also teach a highly successful dissertation module called ‘Special Ethnographic Project’ conducting research among London’s homeless population, at one of local charities.





Research projects

Research reports/projects:


(2014) Land invasions in Peruvian Andes

(2012-2014) Social Remittances in Enlarged Europe (with Prof. Izabela Grabowska)

(2013) Polish nationals in British Trade Unions (Institute of Public Affairs, Warsaw)

(2011) Substance misuse and homeless among migrants in Waltham Forest Borough

(2011) Migrapass – Project on Adult Learning among Migrants (funded by EU Leonardo)

(2010) The Unwanted - Social and Cultural determinants of alcohol abuse and homelessness among Eastern European migrants in England. Report from a study funded by the Southlands Methodist Centre

(2009) New Communities in London Borough of Lewisham.

(2009) Accession States Migrants in the London Borough of Redbridge.

(2009) Social Cohesion in London Borough of Redbridge.

(2007) Between the Local and Transnational. EU Accession States Migrants in the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham

(2007) Class and Ethnicity. Polish migrants in London. Report from an ESRC funded study (with J. Eade and S. Drinkwater)

(2006) Survey among Polish migrants for BBC Newsnight