Ellie Assaf is a PhD candidate in Politics and International Relations within the School of Social, Political and Global Studies. Ellie completed her Masters in Criminology & Criminal Justice at Keele in 2017, following on from receiving a BA in Criminal Justice from Liverpool John Moores University (First class with Honours) in 2016. Alongside her studies, Ellie has collaborated on a variety of research projects with the Criminology department and Education department at Keele University. In addition to this, she enjoyed playing an active part in sessional teaching in the Criminology department for four years before moving into a full-time role within the University.

Research and scholarship

Ellie’s thesis explores how local NGOs navigated the Syrian refugee crisis in Lebanon between 2011-2020. The research entails a multifaceted enquiry, in that it engages not only with the question of how Lebanese LNGOs engage with Syrian refugees, but it goes further into analysing an exceedingly complex refugee management system that revolves around the Lebanese State, international non-governmental organisations (INGOs), and intergovernmental organisations (IGOs). The thesis takes a post-colonial approach by placing local voices at the centre of the research through semi-structured interviews with a range of LNGOs formally and informally responsible for managing the crisis. The main aim of this project is to provide a greater understanding of LNGO’s perceived strains and strengths in their relationships with actors in Lebanon when managing the Syrian refugee crisis. Ellie is supervised by Dr Naveed Sheikh and Dr Moran Mandelbaum.

Research interests:

  • Lebanese politics and political history
  • Syrian refugees
  • NGOs
  • Humanitarian aid
  • Digital research methods


Ellie has taught on the following Criminology modules:

  • Understanding Crime (CRI-10010)
  • Psychology and Crime (CRI-10012)
  • Criminal Justice: Process, Policy and Practice (CRI-10013)
  • Investigating Crime:  Criminological Perspectives (CRI-10014)
  • Punishment: Beyond Popular Imagination (CRI-10015)

And on the Social Work module:

  • Applying Social Work Knowledge and Research (SWK-30001)

And on the Education modules:

  • Dissertation - Education (EDU-40027)
  • Understanding Learning (EDU-10033)

For an up-to-date list of publications, please see my ORCID.