Early Childhood Research Centre Staff


Deborah Albon
Deborah Albon is a Lecturer in Early Childhood Studies, in the School of Education. She is a former student of Roehampton University (known as the Roehampton Institute) - as a BA, PGCE and MA graduate. She began her career as a nursery nurse, working as a maternity nanny and nursery nurse in a variety of early childhood settings. She later qualified as a teacher and worked as a nursery teacher, Foundation Stage coordinator and manager of an Early Years Centre. She has been a traveller liaison link teacher within a school, worked on family learning programmes, supported non-maintained early childhood settings within a local authority and also coordinated curriculum areas such as science and design/technology.

sigrid brogaard clausen

Sigrid Brogaard Clausen

Sigrid Brogaard Clausen is a senior lecturer and researcher in Early Childhood at the School of Education, University of Roehampton. She was previously a lecturer at the College of Social Education/ Kobenhavns Paedagog Seminarium, Copenhagen, Denmark.

Her research interests arise from her experience of the Danish and English early years and range from the policy conditions for children's well-being, learning and democratic participation to the development of professional identity in 'early years'.

She has been a programme convenor for the BA Early Childhood Studies for 11 years and is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, England. She is a member of the steering group of the Early Childhood Studies Degree Network, England


michelle cottle

Michelle Cottle
Michelle Cottle is a Senior Lecturer in Early Childhood Studies. Her current research interests include policy enactment within early years settings and primary schools with a particular focus on discourses of creativity and performativity. She is interested in children's experiences and their participation in research, practitioners' perspectives on their work with children, quality in the early years and Children's Centre development.

peter elfer

Peter Elfer - Interim Director
Dr Peter Elfer is Principal Lecturer in Early Childhood Studies. His long-standing research centres around babies and children under three in nursery provision. He is particularly interested in attachment and peer interaction in this setting and how psychoanalytical tools can be used to explore this relationship. His doctoral research concerned the nature of nursery cultures and their impact on individuals and interactions. The aim was to see whether particular patterns of management are associated with particular outcomes for children.


Dalvir Gill
Dalvir Gill worked as a Senior Lecturer in Early Childhood Education and Care at Newman University (Birmingham) for almost 10 years. Her key teaching and research interests around Human Rights and Social Justice encourage learners to deconstruct the inter-relationship between theories and practice. Other previous experience includes working with diverse communities as part of a successful DfES research project in 2001 to develop innovative inclusive strategies aimed to increase the take-up of early childhood services by Black and other ethnic minority groups. This work also included the development and implementation of the ENCO (Equalities Named Co-ordinators) training. Dalvir has rich international research collaboration and participation. She managed the England part of a Five Country research project, Children Crossing Borders. This study examined the early childhood education and care (ECEC) systems of five countries, in relation to how they include the needs of children of recent immigrant families. Dalvir is a member of the RECE (Reconceptualising in Early Childhood Education) Network and has presented keynotes and symposiums at several international conferences. Additionally, she is currently the Vice Chair of the European Network Diversity in Early Childhood Education and Training (DECET) and has been an active member for over 12 years.


Sue Greenfield
Sue Greenfield is a member of the Early Childhood Studies Research Centre at the University of Roehampton where, until recently, she was a Senior Lecturer in Early Childhood Studies. She is a member of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Working with Parents and of the Institute of Health Visiting. Her research interests are connected to the relationships between families and those who work with young children. Sue is currently involved in a project investigating the contribution of Work Discussion groups, working as part of a team, with Peter Elfer, Sue Robson and others.


Sofia Guimarães
Dr Sofia Guimarães is Senior Lecturer in Early Childhood Studies. Her current main research interests include bilingualism and multilingualism, literacy acquisition and children's emotional wellbeing and learning.

sally howe

Sally Howe
Dr Sally Howe is Lecturer in Early Years and Programme Convenor on the BA Early Childhood Studies. Her research interests include children's perspectives on transitions in the early years, the development of identities in context, and the role of autonomy and interest in children's learning.



Penny Lawrence
Penny Lawrence is Senior Lecturer in Early Childhood Studies. Penny's main research interest is in agency and dialogic learning, particularly in non-verbal interactions. Her background as a specialist documentary maker (BBC Producer in Broadcast Features and Documentaries) and as an early years teacher meet in expertise in observation, documentation and analysis of children’s learning experiences for research and for practice. She has worked extensively in Reggio Emilia, Italy, and with children and families in Pen Green in the UK. Penny is currently preparing publications about dialogic agency in multi-modal interactions from her doctoral thesis ‘Observing and Understanding Decision-making in Two Year Olds in Dialogue’. Penny teaches on modules specialising in children under 3 years of age, play, representation, creativity and thinking, and on research methods on the BA and MA programmes.


Michelle Palser
Michelle Palser is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Roehampton and teaches on the BA Early Childhood Studies and teacher training programmes. As a qualified primary school teacher with a specialism in early childhood, Michelle has held a number of teaching and management responsibilities both in UK and international primary schools. She has also worked as an Early Years Consultant for Service Children's Education, an agency of the Ministry of Defence, where she supported the development of early childhood provision, and supported children and families who were part of the service community. As part of her research interest in early childhood teacher development, Michelle is currently working on a Froebel Trust funded project that explores early childhood teacher trainees’ articulation of Froebelian principles.

suzanne quinn

Suzanne Quinn
Dr Suzanne Quinn is Senior Lecturer in Early Childhood Studies. Her teaching and research projects are related to socio-cultural issues in early childhood studies, particularly the intersecting fields of child development, family studies, early years/primary education, and teacher education.

Current projects include the study of photography and pedagogical documentation techniques in early years education and teacher training, peer mentoring in university early childhood studies programmes, and international experiences in teacher training.

She also has teaching and research expertise related to the analysis of children's literature, specifically the portrayals of fathers and children in picture books.



Clara Rubiano
Clara Rubiano is a Lecturer in Early Childhood Studies. Her main research interests include social justice in early childhood education, teacher education and international educational policies and practices that influence early childhood. With experience in teaching undergraduate and postgraduate students in Colombia, Clara teaches on modules introducing current issues, debates, research in early childhood and awareness of the importance of equity and inclusion in the early years: Contemporary Issues, Researching Social and Cultural Issues, Research Proposal and Being a Professional in Early Childhood: Inclusive Practice. She has been a co-researcher in the explorative study about implications of privatisation in early childhood education funded by Education International and she is currently working on the Erasmus Plus Project E+ Inclusion with the Learning and Teaching Enhancement Unit at the University of Roehampton. She is a member of the Research Network: Cultures of Early Childhood Education and Care (CECEC).

Fengling Tang

Fengling Tang
Dr Fengling Tang is Senior Lecturer in Early Childhood Studies. Her research interests include childhood culture, early childhood curriculum and pedagogy, ethnicity and racial issues in education, technology with young children, Froebelian perspectives in early years, comparative research in early childhood, ethnographic research in education, EAL in early childhood, creativity in early childhood, and research in teacher training education.


Antonia Zachariou
Dr Antonia Zachariou is Lecturer in Early Childhood Studies, in the School of Education. She teaches on the BA Early Childhood Studies programme.

She has previously held a Research Associate post at the Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge, working on the Play, Learning and Narrative Skills (PLaNS) project, with Dr. David Whitebread being the Principal Investigator. She has also been employed as a researcher in a multitude of projects including the Learning in small-group contexts project (funded by the British Academy), led by Prof. Christine Howe and the Family Thinking Skills international project (funded by ESRC) and led by Dr. Michelle Ellefson and Prof. Claire Hughes.



Veronica Anne Read
Looking beneath the surface of what it might mean to say goodbye at two-years-old Lived experiences of children, parents and practitioners on the threshold of nursery, concerning the nature of saying farewell, with specific reference to the two-year-old early education entitlement.



Associate Members

Honorary Research Fellow: Dr Sue Robson

Emeritus Fellow: Dr Jane Read

Honorary Research Fellow: Dr Kristen D. Nawrotski

Honorary Research Fellow: Dr Hiroko Fumoto

Honorary Research Fellow: Dr Yukio Nishida

Visiting Professor: Professor Tina Bruce

Senior Lecturer, University of Reading: Maria Kambouri


Visiting Scholars:

Prof Helen May, University of Otago, Aotearoa/New Zealand

Rodrigo Gabbi Polli, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Porto Alegre, Brazil

Yumiko Taoka, Ryukoku University, Japan

Camilo Zarate Pinto, Universitad Nacional de Colombia

Marisol Moreno, Universitad Nacional de Colombia

Rita Flores Romero, Universitad Nacional de Colombia


Founding Director:

Professor Kevin J. Brehony