William Durden

Richmond students developing real PR skills

One way of putting what you’ve studied to the test is to see what happens when you try it out in the world beyond the classroom. That is something students from the many countries represented on Richmond’s new MA Advertising and Public Relations are helped to do, providing them with proof of their practical skills.

As part of their final professional project, our students researched a topic of their choosing and sought to get real media coverage, using the techniques they had been taught in the previous semesters. Their topics ranged widely, covering the fashion industry, German food in London, clubbing in Richmond, Italian musicians in Britain, health in the workplace, homelessness, what it’s like for Americans and Russians studying abroad – and much more besides.

The work of many of the students on the new MA programme featured in their home countries’ media, appearing in newspapers and online news sites in Austria, Spain, Italy, Germany and the USA as well as on Italian television, while others got their stories into the UK print, broadcast and online media.

Topics ranged widely – eg German food in London, clubbing in Richmond, Italian musicians in London, what it’s like for Americans (and Russians) studying abroad and other articles in Richmond and Twickenham Times newspaper and Arkansas Democrat Gazette amongst others.



Dr Robert J. Wallis to speak at Wellcome Institute on ‘Rituals in the 21st century: continuity or reinvention’

Wallis will be part of a panel of three anthropologists discussing ritual today in response to the exhibition of Alice Anderson’s work, ‘Memory Movement Memory Objects’, currently on show at the Wellcome Collection. Wallis’s contribution will introduce the anthropology of ritual and focus on the re-use of shamanism by Western practitioners and contemporary artists. Tickets are available for the event on Thursday 17 September, 19.00-20.30 at the Wellcome Collection, Euston.

Dr. Robert J. Wallis is Professor of Visual Culture, Associate Dean of Postgraduate Programmes and Convenor of the MA in Art History and Visual Culture at Richmond University. He is interested in the archaeology and anthropology of art and religion with a particular focus on prehistoric rock art, shamanism and animism, and the uses of shamanism in society today. He is a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London and a Fellow of the Royal Anthropological Institute.

Wallis is the author or co-author of over 100 articles, chapters and other publications, and five books including A Permeability of Boundaries? New Approaches to the Archaeology of Art, Religion and Folklore (Oxford 2001), Shamans/neo-Shamans: Ecstasy, Alternative Archaeologies and Contemporary Pagans (Routledge 2003), Historical Dictionary of Shamanism (Scarecrow 2005), and Sacred Sites, Contested Rites/Rights: Pagan Engagements with Archaeological Monuments (Sussex 2007). He is currently working on a monograph critically examining the interface between shamanism and art, from prehistoric cave painting to the contemporary art gallery.

Richmond Shield

Professor Nick Wilkinson from the School of Business & Economics has just signed a contract with Palgrave Macmillan for a third edition of his textbook

Professor Nick Wilkinson from the School of Business & Economics has just signed a contract with Palgrave Macmillan for a third edition of his textbook “ An Introduction to Behavioural Economics”. Professor Wilkinson has also been invited by Naspers Academy in Cape Town to deliver a series of workshops in behavioural economics in October 2015 as part of their leadership programme.”

Professor Dominic Alessio

Professor of History and Dean of International Programmes, presented latest paper

Dom Alessio, Professor of History and Dean of International Programmes, recently presented a paper on his new research examining the role of filibusters in empire formation and the origins of fascism by way of Jules Verne’s last published book The Barsac Mission (1914). The international conference, entitled “Utopias”, was held at the University of Brighton. The work is part of an on-going re-examination of the theories surrounding empire-state formation and argues that states are not the only empire-makers. An extended and updated version of the piece is to be presented at the institute of Historical Research in October.


Art History and Visual Culture MA Student secures prestigious internship at Guggenheim, New York


A core component of the MA in Art History and Visual Culture programme is a 9-week internship carried out over the summer months. Coming towards the end of their MA studies, students tell us that the internship provides them with the opportunity to put into practice the skills and knowledge they have gained during their time at Richmond. Students are placed with a wide range of leading cultural institutions depending on their personal interests. One of this years students, Irati Arrieta has recently completed an internship with The Arts Catalyst, were she gained valuable art commissioning and management skills and will now go on to take up a placement with Guggenheim, New York. Irati commented:

“During my nine weeks with The Arts Catalyst I have exercised a very wide range of skills at work, such as researching for future projects, making contracts for the artists, creating risk assessment documents and press releases, organising information into neat spreadsheets, or getting in touch with local groups in order to promote the events. But aside from exercising a long list of transferrable skills, I have also gained a wide perspective on how an art commissioning organisation works, how they develop their projects and how their vision of future influences the work they do at the present.

Picture2I can say that this has been a successful internship experience in that it has given me the chance to have a fist hand engagement with the daily activities of an arts commissioning organisation, through which I have developed a highly valuable skillset and an equally important critical awareness on how the art industry works. Through the many different projects I have had the opportunity to collaborate with, I have acquired a wide vision of the steps, processes and contacts required to go ahead with a publicly funded art project, as well as the prior research needed and the media and marketing infrastructure through which it is publicised to the public”


Wrecked! on the Intertidal zone: A Series of Investigations into the Thames Estuary. Commissioned by The Arts Catalyst. Photo Credit: Irati Arrieta

With glowing endorsements from her summer placement, and a strong academic record Irati has successfully secured a highly competitive, and prestigious graduate internship at Guggenheim, New York, which she will begin in September 2015.

“I see the internship at Guggenheim New York as an excellent opportunity to continue learning about the contemporary art world in one of its leading institutions, while consolidating the knowledge and skills I’ve acquired so far and expanding my work experience in a world class museum. I think that having an international work and academic experience has been quite decisive for achieving such a placement, and studying an MA in Art History and Visual Culture in a global art hub such as London makes a great difference, at both a personal and professional level”

Art History and Visual Culture Programme Convenor, Professor Robert Wallis commented:

“We are delighted for Irati, during her time at Richmond she has shown a real dedication to her studies, and demonstrated a flair for Art History and Visual Culture across a range of courses including Contemporary Art and Professional Practice. Irati joins a long line of Richmond graduates who have taken up positions at key international museums and galleries including The Saatchi Gallery and The Metropolitan Museum of Art”

Further details about the MA in Arts History and Visual Culture Programme and how to apply for this programme.

Professor George Xinsheng Zhang

Richmond’s Professor George Zhang recently spoke on Chinese language teacher training at the International Conference on Teaching and Learning Chinese Higher Education

Richmond’s Professor George Zhang recently spoke on Chinese language teacher training in the UK and Holland at the 13th International Conference on Teaching and Learning Chinese Higher Education: Past, Present and Future in Oxford University (8-10 July) organised by the British Chinese Language Teaching Society (BCLTS).

The conference drew over 160 participants from all around the world this year. He also gave a talk, via video link, at the Fifth International Chinese Teacher Education Forum in Beijing (15-17 July).

The annual forum was organised by the China Open University and is the only regular international forum of its kind in China. Professor Zhang is also a member of the advisory council for both organisations.swed

Dr Parviz Dabir Alai

Dr Parviz Dabir-Alai invited to Oxford University to discuss work on informal labour markets in South Asia

Dr Parviz Dabir-Alai, Professor of Economics, was recently invited (July 2015) to the Department of International Development at Queen Elizabeth House, Oxford University, to discuss with faculty and postgraduate researchers the work he has done on the measurement of economic vulnerability within informal labour markets in South Asia; and also to discuss work pioneered as part of Oxford University’s Poverty and Human Development Initiative on multidimensional indicators of poverty.

Subject to further extensions of it Dr Dabir-Alai’s work on measuring economic vulnerability is now complete but his research methodology has been replicated by academics in Ethiopia, Peru and the Philippines.

Dr Martin D. Brown

Richmond’s Dr Martin D. Brown writes for the London School of Economics’ EUROPP Blog

Forty years later, the signing of the Helsinki Final Act continues to have an impact on European security

The Ukraine crisis dramatically raised the profile of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), with the OSCE playing a role in discussions between Russia, Europe and the United States. It also provided an opportunity for the organisation to demonstrate its continued relevance to European security, forty years after the signing of the so called ‘Helsinki Final Act’ in 1975, which served as the foundation for the establishment of the OSCE. Martin D. Brown and Angela Romano provide an overview of the significance of the Final Act, its original aims and how its contents shaped future security developments up to the present day.



BSc Accounting & Finance programme formally receives accreditation from the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)

ACCREDITED PROGRAMMEThe School of Business & Economics at Richmond University is pleased to announce that their BSc Accounting & Finance programme has formally received accreditation from the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) the global body for professional accountants.

Assessment has been carried out by ACCA against the BSc Accounting & Finance and in addition to their degrees students will now be able to obtain professional exemption from ACCA examination which needs to be completed to gain chartered qualified accountant status.

Commenting on this achievement, Professor Adrian Wilkins, Dean of School said “this is an important development for the school and for our students who appreciate the growing importance of professional accreditation in their degree programmes. At Richmond University we aim to provide a high quality business- focused education and we wish all our students on the BSc Accounting & Finance programme every success in their studies.”


Victoria Olszewska on behalf of Delia Heneghan, Vice President (Pro Vice-Chancellor), Marketing, Recruitment and Admissions

Richmond, the American International University

Queens Road



TW10 6JP



Richmond, The American International University in London is a private, liberal arts university established in 1972 in Richmond, London. The university’s degrees are accredited in the USA by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, and are validated in the UK by the Open University Validation Services (OUVS). Richmond hopes to achieve taught degree awarding powers (TDAP) by 2016.

The university is split between two campuses, both in the Greater London area: the Richmond campus, and the Kensington campus. The Richmond campus is the primary residence of undergraduate students, especially freshman who have just enrolled at the university; its facade is a major symbol of the school and appears on almost all promotional literature. The school’s The Kensington campus ( a closely grouped set of buildings) is where many of the upper-level undergraduate and postgraduate students reside.

William Durden

MBA Student Successfully Completes Internship at Virgin StartUp

A key feature of the MBA Programme is the opportunity to carry out a nine week internship over the summer months.

The School of Business & Economics is pleased to report that Keri Hodnik has recently successfully completed her internship with Virgin StartUp.

Virgin StartUp was created as a delivery partner for the government Startup Loans Scheme, whose mission was to provide loans of up to  £25,000 to UK residents to start independent businesses. Keri was responsible for developing a co-working proposition. This would see Virgin StartUp move away from simply providing early stage funding to having a physical space in Central London, which would provide not only co-working space for entrepreneurs, but also incorporate popup retail space, a commercial café as well as housing a Virgin StartUp run accelerator programme.

Andy Fishburn ( Head of Investment at Virgin StartUp ) commented:

“ Keri is the first intern that we have had at Virgin StartUp, and based on this experience it is certainly something we would look to do again… From our perspective, the Internship Programme has been a great success and I hope Keri has gotten as much out of her time as we have.”