Maja Zarkovic

Maja is currently completing her LLM at Queen Mary, University of London with a specialization in Immigration Law. She also has a LLB from Queen Mary and a BA in Political Science from McGill University. Her main area of interest is international refugee law. More specifically, her research interests include the special protection regime set out for Palestinian refugees under international refugee law and the (mis-)interpretation of Article 1D of the 1951 Refugee Convention. She is also currently writing a dissertation examining why women should constitute particular social group per se. Originally from the Former Yugoslavia, Maja immigrated to Canada at the age of seven due to the ethnic conflicts in the region. She currently holds American, Serbian, and Canadian citizenship. In the future, she plans to provide skilled legal aid to refugees.

Andonis Marden

Andonis began volunteering with IRRI in June 2015; his efforts were focused on the Sexual Orientation and Identity (LGBTI) programme. At that time he was also working with Forced Migration Review, was Co-Editor in Chief of the Oxford Monitor of Forced Migration, and was Director of Hogacre Common Eco Park - a community organisation that works with refugees and asylum seekers. Previously, he was Visiting Researcher at the African Centre for Migration and Society (Wits University, Johannesburg) and Research Assistant at the Geneva Centre for Security Policy. Andonis completed the MSc in Refugee and Forced Migration Studies with distinction in 2014. He received his BA in International Affairs and Political Science from Northeastern University in 2013. 

Tiffany Shakespeare 

Tiffany is a 4th year BSc Anthropology student at University College London (UCL). She spent a year abroad at Sciences Po Paris, where she conducted research for her thesis on conflict-induced forced migration and refugee involvement in homeland politics. She has been Campaigns Officer for UCL Student Action for Refugees (StAR), winning the Equal Access Campaign, an intern at Syrian refugee centre Association Revivre, Paris, and has worked in a small NGO in rural Uganda.

Ziyad Hayatli

Ziyad is currently studying a for a Master of Laws LLM in International Law at Oxford Brookes University in Oxford, and holds a combined BA in Journalism and Philosophy. He is a dual citizen of the UK and Palestine, and has lived most of his life in Oxford. He has previous experience as an assistant editor at Philosophy Now magazine and an extensive interest in Middle Eastern politics and conflict in general, and Israel and Palestine in particular.

Alessandra Di Cataldo 

Alessandra is a fourth year undergraduate student at the University of Edinburgh, studying towards a degree in Arabic and Politics. She is a dual citizen of the United States and Italy, and grew up in Baltimore, USA, while her family currently lives in Rome. She has just finished her year abroad in Amman, Jordan, where she studied Arabic language and Middle Eastern culture, media, and literature at the Institut Français du Proche-Orient. Alessandra plans to pursue a master’s degree in refugee studies after graduating next year, and will hopefully go on to work at an NGO that deals with refugees in the future.

Jill Alpes

Post-Deportation Monitoring Network Coordinator

Jill is a legal anthropologist and postdoc researcher at the migration law section VU Amsterdam and the CERI at Sciences Po Paris. Her current research is focused on return related risks for non-admitted migrants and the criminalisation of emigration. Jill holds a PhD from the University of Amsterdam, an MA in development studies from Sciences Po Paris, and a BA in history and politics from the University of Sheffield. She is an experienced fieldwork researcher with a variety of sensitive state and non-state actors (e.g. consulate offices, airports, prisons, police posts and migration brokers). She has conducted missions in rural and urban Africa and Asia and has been teaching on human trafficking, development and international politics and migration law. She has been working on vulnerabilities and protection mechanisms for migrants, women and children in collaboration with UNESCO, the IOM, the Samu Social, and PICUM.

Gabriel Bonis

Gabriel Bonis completed his MA in International Relations from Queen Mary, University of London in 2014. In his dissertation, he analysed if the 2008 financial crisis led France and Germany to reduce their average asylum recognition rates between 2008 and 2013. He also holds a Honors Postgraduate degree in Politics and International Relations from the Foundation School of Sociology and Politics of Sao Paulo and a Honors BA in Social Communications/Journalism. He edits a blog of international affairs at CartaCapital magazine, one of the most prominent publications of Brazil, and is a Refugee Caseworker at the British Red Cross in London. Speaks English, Portuguese and Spanish.

Kevin Fender

Kevin is currently studying for his undergraduate degree in Sociology with an emphasis on Law, Justice, and Social Control with minors in Political Science and Arabic at Chapman University in Orange, California. In Fall 2014, he was in Amman, Jordan conducting research for his senior thesis on the current conditions of human trafficking in the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. He speaks English and Arabic.

Andrew Kerr 

Andrew completed his BA in History at Somerville College, Oxford, in 2013. Since then he has studied the Graduate Diploma in Law at Oxford Brookes and is now studying the LLM Legal Practice Course in London. Andrew has taught in China and rural Western Sahara. 

Mel Moeinvaziri

Mel is currently pursuing an MSc in Refugee and Forced Migration Studies at the University of Oxford.  She holds an Honors BA in Political Science and a BA in International Studies from the University of Utah. Her master's thesis is focused on the post-deportation monitoring of rejected asylum seekers, states legal and moral obligrations to them, and the action of civil society to fill the protection gap left by states in regards to deportees. Upon completion of her MSc, she plans to return to the US to pursue a Juris Doctor and become an advocate for refugee’s legal rights. 

Vera Wriedt

Vera completed her BA in Philosophy, Politics and Economics at Oxford University in 2014. She works as an intern for the Sexual Orientation and Identity (LGBTI) programme and is coordinating Oxford Migrant Solidarity, a group visiting detainees in Campsfield IRC near Oxford. Vera is fluent in English, German, and Spanish, and has good oral and written knowledge of French. Seeking to expand her academic and practical engagement with refugee rights, Vera plans to pursue an LLM in Human Rights with specific focus on refugees next year. 

Tamara van Doorn

Tamara holds a M.Sc. in Cultural Anthropology & Development Studies from Radboud University, Netherlands, where she focused on migration, specifically pilgrimage in Northern India, spending several months in Asia and the Middle East. At the Rights in Exile Programme, she assists with the Post-Deportation Monitoring Network and the Sexual Orientation and Identity (LGBTI)  programme. Tamara has spent significant time with refugee organizations in Israel, and hopes to continue working and learning about refugee law through IRRI. She speaks Dutch and English.


For a list of our past volunteers, please see this list.