I started at Keele in 2020 to begin my Leverhulme funded Early Career Fellowship - Global therapeutic networks: mapping the new disconnects between place and care – in the School of Geography, Geology and the Environment. This project examines transnational forms of healthcare focusing on call centre nurses in the Philippines and migrant carers in the UK. This builds on my PhD research undertaken at Newcastle University (2015-2019) that explored the context of nursing in Metro Manila, the Philippines in relation to the emigration of nurse labour. I was also a visiting student at the Balsillie School of International Affairs (September-December 2016), Ontario, Canada. I remain a research associate of the International Migration Research Centre (IMRC). I studied at Newcastle University for my PhD (2019), Masters (2014) and Bachelor of Arts (2013), all of which were in Human Geography, and before coming to Keele I Lectured in Human Geography at Newcastle University.
I am also involved with the Royal Geographical Society and currently coordinate the Geographies of Health and Wellbeing Research Group annual dissertation prize. I have previously served as the Postgraduate Forum chairperson and am an Ordinary Member of the Social and Cultural Research Group.
Research and scholarship
As a feminist labour geographer, my research focuses on the intersection of three key themes within geography – health, migration, and labour. I focus on Southeast Asia.
My expertise lies in Philippine care labour migration. I began my research with migrant Filipino care workers in the UK in 2012. Initially I conducted interviews and mapping exercises with Filipinos in a nurse-led care home in northeast England. My doctoral research (2014-18) then developed my expertise through fieldwork in the Philippines. There, I examined how trained nurses are drawn into exploitative domestic labour conditions, labour migration, entrepreneurship, or call centre care work, employing in-depth interviews and mental mapping. My thesis, by incorporating previously invisible care providers working across international boundaries, revealed the inadequacies of existing conceptualisations of global care provision.
Key publications from my doctoral research develop the geographical imaginations approach to understanding migration decision-making. I examine how geographical imaginations - the imaginations of cultural, societal, economic, and political opportunities of - impact the propensity to migrate. This work seeks to contribute new dimensions to the growing literature which interrogates the relationship between migration decision-making and culture, moving beyond purely socio-economic conceptualisations of migration. More recently, I have turned to examine the role of digital health in disrupting and reproducing globally exploitative labour practices in healthcare. My most recent publication in Mobilities (2019), examines how inequalities are reproduced through the outsourcing of healthcare-based activities.
Additionally, I have also worked on two ESRC funded projects related to my core interests. The first, explored challenges of ethical commodity chains in the global south, and the second examined retailers understandings of Anti-Microbial Resistance. I am also co-authoring a paper based on the exploitation of palm oil workers in Malaysia.
Global therapeutic networks: mapping the new disconnects between place and care
My current Leverhulme funded project builds on my findings regarding the outsourcing of healthcare. Recognising that the world faces a ‘care crisis’ that is changing patterns and practices of care work, my new project questions how new technologies tend to break the place-care link, enabling trained care professionals to provide care from a distance in call centres, disrupting expectations of 1:1, face-to-face care delivery. Through conducting fieldwork in the UK and the Philippines, this study examines how these changes transform the quality of care delivered and produce new global therapeutic networks.
Maddy is not teaching at Keele University at the moment, but is happy to speak to students on any issues concerning healthcare, migration, and labour.
Maddy is a Fellow of the Higher Education Authority.
At her previous post, Maddy taught Health Geographies, Geographical Study Skills, and was the departmental lead for Careers and Employment.
Full Publications Listshow
2020. Challenges and opportunities as a white postgraduate woman researching in Asia. In Handbook on Gender in Asia. Edward Elgar Publishing. doi>
The Ethical Recruitment of Internationally Educated Nurses? An Examination of the Devaluing of Nursing in the Philippines, a Sending Region. In An Examination of the Devaluing of Nursing in the Philippines.