Jun 27 2024

In memory of Vhon Barrett

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Vhon BarrettIt is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Vhon Barrett.

Vhon joined LSE in October 1999 and served as part of the Estates Maintenance team for almost 25 years.

He was also a member of LSE’s staff network EmbRace, and his enthusiasm for the group’s mission and community did not go unnoticed.

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Jun 27 2024

In memory of Anne Shepherd

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A young Anne ShepherdIt is with great sadness that friends and colleagues from across the LSE share news of the death of Anne Shepherd, on Thursday 6 June 2024.

Anne joined LSE in 2002, and until her retirement last autumn, she managed the Editorial Office of Population Studies, deftly overseeing all aspects of the day-to-day production of the journal. She also served as the Secretariat for the Population Investigations Committee (PIC) and the British Society for Population Studies (BSPS). Anne’s unwavering and unparalleled commitment to her work has left an indelible mark.

Anne’s extremely competent, extremely knowledgeable, and no-nonsense approach to all she did, earned her much respect and admiration, both within and outside of the School. Countless members of the demographic research community who encountered Anne as PIC-funded MSc students, BSPS council members, authors, reviewers, and editors will have fond memories of her inimitably patient, good-humoured – but uncompromising and occasionally irreverent – manner and approach. She will be dearly missed by everyone who had the pleasure of working with her.

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Jun 26 2024

In memory of Cheryl Conner

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Image of Cheryl Conner on a sunny day overlooking the beachThe Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion (CASE) is greatly saddened to announce the death of our dear colleague and friend Cheryl Conner on 30 May 2024.

Cheryl, was CASE Administrator from 2010 to 2019, returning to the role in September 2022. She was a much loved member of the team, who will be greatly missed by all who knew her.

Cheryl graduated from the LSE with a BSc in Social Policy in 2010 at the age of 30. She was incredibly proud of her achievement, having gone to university as a mature student. She followed this degree with a Masters in Social Policy and Planning in 2013. Cheryl worked alongside her part-time studies, first joining CASE in 2010 as John Hills’ Personal Assistant. She stayed at CASE for nine years, only leaving following a move to the Midlands in 2019 and a desire to work more directly with people experiencing disadvantage. She had several different roles following her departure from CASE, including as a Community Support Worker for North Warwickshire Borough Council during the COVID-19 pandemic, playing an important keyworker role ensuring older people were kept safe in their own homes. But she never stopping missing LSE (and we never stopped missing her).  It seemed fortuitous that when the incumbent CASE administrator left in 2022, Cheryl was also ready to return and immediately applied for the role of Centre Administrator. She was without doubt the most qualified and most enthusiastic applicant to be interviewed for the role bringing a wealth of experience and lots of new ideas. We were thrilled to welcome her back to the team and she picked up the role like she’d never left, making an immediate positive impact on the Centre and the CASE / STICERD admin office.

The work of CASE and of the LSE generally is not possible without the huge effort put in by its professional services staff, and Cheryl was at the core of CASE’s academic and social life. Cheryl was often the first person someone would meet in CASE, and she made everyone feel welcome and part of our community.

Cheryl was a key part of the joint CASE-STICERD admin teams that share an office in the Sir Arthur Lewis building, always on hand to offer support, advice, charm the printer, and do the literal heavy lifting. She was always up for a cup of tea and chat about the commute or share pictures and stories of her beloved pets. Cheryl was highly organised, creative, with a special interest in graphic design, and always kind and generous; a combination that endeared her to academics, researchers, professional services staff, and students alike. Cheryl was also very clever and astute, and able to share valuable takes and insights on CASE’s research. She created a huge following on CASE’s social media and was responsible for ensuring that CASE’s seminars and special events were well attended, as well as looking after speakers and ensuring the technology ran smoothly (no mean feat!).

Outside of work, Cheryl loved spending time with close friends and family, including her parents and brother, was a devoted aunty to her young nephew, and would delight in sharing stories about the adventures of her rescue cat, Tommy. She was a strong advocate of LGBTQ+ organisations and social justice causes. She enjoyed caravanning, playing with old cars and working out how to keep them running, art, trips to the seaside, being a quarter Danish, and European pop.

Cheryl took such pride in being part of CASE and the LSE, and we feel hugely privileged to have had her as both a colleague and a friend. She will be deeply missed.

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Jun 4 2024

In memory of George Carey

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LSE Library is greatly saddened by the death of George Carey, a former member of the Collection Management team, a great colleague and friend to many of us. George joined LSE Library in 2000 and stayed for 21 years before retiring in 2021.

We will miss his enthusiastic contribution to the team; he had a mischievous sense of humour and was a great personality to be around. George was very supportive of his colleagues and always enjoyed helping library users.

George had a keen interest in football and music (especially Elvis Presley) and visited Liverpool several times to see the historical places associated with the football club, the Beatles, and the individual members of the group. George was also an avid traveller and visited multiple European cities, often sending postcards back to colleagues in the library detailing his numerous escapades.

He had a sharp, investigative mind and often after a shift in the Library would spend some time observing the proceedings in the Royal Courts of Justice. He never took himself too seriously and often joked about writing a sit-com based on the multiple things that could go wrong in a library.

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Jun 4 2024

In memory of Chris Hamlin

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It is with great sadness that we share the passing of Chris Hamlin, who passed away peacefully on Tuesday 21 May 2024.

Chris, joined LSE as part of the Estates Division in 2008, starting as a Porter and moving on as a General Cleaning Assistant as part the Centre Building’s night team in August 2019.

He was a well-known character across the campus and will be missed by all who knew and worked with him.

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Apr 10 2024

In memory of Cheistha Kochhar (1990–2024)

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Cheistha Kochhar was a first year MRes/ PhD student in Organisational Behaviour in the Department of Management. It is with the deepest sadness that we share the news of her tragic passing on 19 March 2024. During her short time in the department and at LSE, Cheistha left a lasting impact on everyone she encountered.

She is remembered among the PhD community for her fierce intelligence, enduring kindness and bright, positive energy which she brought with her everywhere she went, lighting up every room that she entered. Her dedication to helping and supporting others reverberated not only among her colleagues, but also among the students for whom she was a Teaching Assistant.

With her passing, the department and LSE has lost a brilliant student and a promising scholar. She was known for being way ahead of the game; she was already in the process of consolidating her dissertation structure at such an early stage of her course. Cheistha’s academic prowess was highlighted by her numerous awards and accolades including being named the (2020) Clinton Global Fellow, (2019) Irving B. Harris Scholar, (2012) TATA Scholar and (2012) Dr. Roshan Lal Trust Scholar, amongst others. She was also named the (2013) Young India Fellow by Ashoka University.

Bringing more than a decade of experience as an expert in behavioural policy to LSE, Cheistha had most recently worked as a Senior Advisor to the National Behavioural Insights Unit (BIU) of India, where she built and scaled the first BIU in the Global South, highlighting her capacity for truly transformational work.

Cheistha will be deeply missed by all those at LSE who had the privilege to meet her. If you wish to share a memory of Cheistha from her time at LSE, you can visit her memorial page here.

Cheistha’s profile from the Department of Management website:

Cheistha Kochhar holds an MA in International Development and Policy (MAIDP) from the University of Chicago and a BA (Honors) in Economics and Mathematics from the University of Delhi. Her research lies at the intersection of behaviour science and organisational strategy, with a focus on public sector organisations, social enterprises and philanthropies.

Prior to LSE, Cheistha worked as a behavioural policy expert for more than a decade, designing and scaling national programs for global institutions, including McKinsey, University of Chicago and Government of India, amongst others. Most recently, she served as the founding Senior Advisor to the National Behavioural Insights Unit (BIU) of India, where built and scaled the first BIU in the Global South. She was also a member of the founding team of Aadhar (Social Security Number equivalent of India).

Rooted in her professional experience, Cheistha’s research examines collaboration dynamics across and within the boundaries of pro-social organisations, especially towards addressing grand challenges. In an increasingly independent world, she hopes to further our understanding of emerging forms of collaborations within and across non-market organisations and uncover interventions to improve the outcomes of such collaborations. She adopts mixed methods in her research designs.

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Apr 8 2024

In memory of Michael Banks (1936-2024)

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It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Michael Banks on 21 March 2024.

Michael, who was a Reader in International Relations when he retired in 1999, taught in the Department for 38 years. He will be remembered for his engaging, magisterial lectures on IR theory and for his generosity with his time in discussing new ideas with students of all levels. He was also a constant source of advice and support to the student editorial teams at Millennium: Journal of International Studies.

Michael first joined the Department as a student in 1955 on the BSc (Econ) International Relations. After completing his degree in1957, he spent the next four years studying in the States, completing a two year MA in Political Science at Lehigh University, before heading to Boston where he started a doctorate in African Studies on a joint programme run by Harvard, MIT and Brandeis. He returned to the School in 1961, taking up a lectureship in the International Relations Department. Over the course of his academic career Michael also taught at universities in Nairobi, Lusaka, Geneva, Stuttgart and Frankfurt and spent time at USC and Dartmouth College.

Michael was born in 1936 in Hythe, Hampshire, where his father worked as a professional skipper on racing yachts owned by wealthy English industrialists. As a small child, he was briefly evacuated to the Oxfordshire countryside during the Second World War, but returned to the family home in Hythe for the final years of the war. There he observed the build-up to D-Day and witnessed the firebombing of Southampton across the Solent – an event which left a deep impression on him and was the root of his longstanding pacifism. At age 13 he won a place at Brockenhurst Grammar School where he thrived academically, eventually securing a place at LSE.

At LSE, both during his BSc studies and the first years of his academic appointment, Banks was initially mentored by C.A.W Manning. At the time, the Department and its undergraduate degree programme were deeply imbued with an approach to the study of international relations that is now charactersied as the ‘English School’. He fell out with Manning (or Manning with him) in the late 1960s, when Michael started to engage with the so-called ‘behavioural revolution’ in North American IR. This was the start of a characteristic feature of Michael’s academic and educational career – an interest in the theoretically new and cutting edge. This manifested itself in two important inflection points in Michael’s work.

First was his engagement with Thomas Kuhn’s work on the sociology of knowledge, the structure of scientific revolutions and the role of paradigmatic shifts in knowledge structures and ways of knowing. Michael appropriated Kuhn’s core arguments to characterise the state of IR theory in the late 1970s and early 1980s as an incommensurable ‘inter-paradigm debate’ between realist, pluralist and structural accounts of global politics. Informing the core of his lectures for both the core second year course in ‘International Politics’ and in his MSc course in ‘Concepts and Methods of International Relations’, the ‘inter-paradigm debate’ offered a framing of the discipline that shaped a generation of scholars and scholarly debate.

Second was his engagement from the late 1970s onwards with John Burton’s ‘world society’ approach and, in particular, Burton’s then avant-garde arguments for a ‘facilitated analytical problem-solving’ approach to resolving violent conflicts. Along with colleagues such as John Groom, Chris Mitchell, Tony deReuk, Richard Little and Margot Light, Banks was a member of the Centre for the Analysis of Conflict which sought to develop both the theory and practice of what is now widely characterized as ‘second’ or ‘multi-track’ diplomacy in seeking to bring an end to violent conflicts. The exploration and development of these ideas underpinned his edited volume, Conflict in World Society (1984) and Handbook of Conflict Resolution: The Analytical Problem Solving Approach (1996 with Chris Mitchell).

For many, Michael will be remembered for his brilliant and inspiring teaching – both in his lectures (which were delivered with a certain panache and were always packed) and in the seminar room where he encouraged thought provoking open-ended conversation and dialogue. He was a dedicated teacher who cared deeply about not only what students were taught, but also more importantly, how students were taught. He had very strong views on what a university education should entail. He came to abhor what he saw as the neo-liberalisation of higher education in the form of the RAE/REF and the external oversight of teaching quality in the form of the then QAA – though, ironically, his underlying pedagogy would tick many of the contemporary boxes regarding what constitutes an outstanding teaching and learning experience for students.

In his leisure time, Michael had a deep love for sailing (which he got from his father) – regularly engaging in early Sunday morning competitive sailing at the Queen Mary reservoir west of London in all kinds of weather and doing so until his mid-60s. He also had a love for horticulture. In later years, not having a garden of his own, he would vicariously satisfy this interest through visits to stately gardens and gifting friends with small fruit trees, plants, shrubs, gardening tools and books.

During his time at LSE Michael supported and encouraged many young scholars and colleagues who have gone on to become senior figures in the discipline. Many of those individuals and others across the wider IR community will long remember his kindness and generosity in helping them on their professional journeys. He will be greatly missed.

A public memorial event will be arranged with the IR Department for later in the year.

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Jan 15 2024

In Memory of Steen Mangen (1950-2023)

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Photo Steen Mangen at Lake OhridIt is with the deepest sadness that the Department of Social Policy announces the death of Steen Mangen, who passed away suddenly in his home on 10 December 2023. Steen earned his PhD in the Department in 1977 and “re-joined” the Department as a “New Blood Lecturer in European Social Policy” in 1985 – the year European leaders agreed on the Single European Act paving the way for greater economic and political integration. Steen served the School as a member of faculty for 33 years, before retiring in 2018.

Steen was deeply committed to the study of European integration and had, growing up in Stoke-on-Trent as the son of a miner and a factory worker in the local potteries, a long-standing research interest in urban regeneration. At the School, he pioneered the teaching of European Social Policy and established a specialist MSc programme for those with an interest in the social integration of Europe. Steen ran the MSc in European Social Policy with exemplary dedication to his students – many of whom remained in touch with him long after they graduated from the programme.

Among colleagues and students, Steen was known for his extraordinary wit, which brought much laughter to the classroom and the Department’s tea kitchen. He loved the theatre and opera, and had a keen interest in architecture. Only the global pandemic could temporarily “pause” his passion for travel and learning about other countries. Steen was a polyglot who watched daily news programmes in Spanish, French and German. He never lost his active interest in Europe.

Steen’s unexpected death was a great shock, and he will be missed sadly.

Written by Timo Fleckenstein

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Oct 9 2023

In memory of Nick Crafts

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The Department of Economic History is deeply saddened by the death of Professor Nick Crafts, a former Convenor of the Department, and a great friend and colleague. He was generous with his time, and supportive of students and young scholars and, above all, very funny.

Nick was, quite literally, a giant of his field and an inspiration to many. His work with Knick Harley, reinterpreting the British Industrial Revolution remains influential and much discussed.

Nick joined the Department of Economic History at LSE in 1995 and stayed for 10 years before returning to Warwick where he was the founding Director of CAGE.

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Sep 13 2023

In memory of Doris Hermann-Ostrowski

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It is with deep sadness that we are sharing the news that our Language Centre colleague Doris Hermann-Ostrowski passed away unexpectedly on Friday 14 July this year from heart failure at the age of 71.

Doris joined the LSE Language Centre in 2007 and was a highly valued member of the German teaching team. She will be remembered as a very competent and meticulous professional with a passion for teaching who cared deeply about her students. She will be missed by staff and students alike.

Her funeral and cremation took place on 25 August, with family and friends in attendance.

There is a tribute page at https://rodica-dorishermann-ostrowski.muchloved.com/.

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