Aliya teaches on the Comparative and International Education MSc programme at our Department. She is also a Junior Research Fellow at Lady Margaret Hall. Her research focuses on young people and families’ experiences of education in turbulent times.

For example, educational challenges and rehabilitation during COVID-19 and after the 2022 floods in Pakistan. Her current geographical focus includes ethnically diverse communities (Pakistani and Bangladeshi) in England as well as marginalised communities in Pakistan.

Aliya’s PhD explored the complexities of gender and international education, and her current work focuses on decolonising educational research practices and the experience of Southern-ness globally. Aliya’s specialist areas are parental, mothers’ and young people’s perspectives of and aspirations for education, and their own modalities of agency to fulfil their dreams.

Aliya publishes on the topics of Southern epistemologies and methodologies and teaches on related topics of decolonisation of knowledge production and the politics of representation. She is currently leading multiple projects in England and Pakistan focusing on girls’ education, gender experiences of education, mothers’ perspectives on educating their children, teacher educators, displaced peoples experiences in England and Pakistan.

Aliya is accepting DPhil students interested in these areas:

  • Southern epistemologies and methodologies
  • The capability approach and social justice
  • Negative capability
  • Deconstruction of the silence/violence binary
  • Marginalised peoples’ perspectives
  • Intersectional experiences of marginalisation including those related with gender, race, ethnicity, indigeneity, queerness, disability, class and caste (among others)
  • Decolonisation of knowledge production and representation of the South
  • Qualitative methodologies
  • Theorising from the margins
  • Area focus South Asia particularly Pakistan and Afghanistan
  • Internal displacement

Aliya is the acting Deputy Chair of the United Kingdom Forum for International Education and Training (UKFIET) conference 2023.

Gates Cambridge Biography


Research Group Membership


Research Projects

1. ‘Understanding the impact of COVID-19 on learning experiences of secondary school going age children among Bangladeshi and Pakistani ethnic minority families’
Funder: Cambridge Humanities Research Grants Scheme
Research team: Professor Nidhi Singal and Dr Aliya Khalid
Status: Complete

2. Gendered Inequalities in Education and Capability Spaces for Women/Girls (and others) in Pakistan: Education and reconstruction after 2022 floods in Pakistan
Funder: British Association for International and Comparative Education (BAICE) Seedcorn Fund
Research team: Aliya Khalid, Soufia Siddiqui, Aditi Chidambaram, Indrani Sigamany
Status: Ongoing

3. Bridging the Local and Global: Women’s Spaces and Collectives’: On becoming caregivers and teachers: Immigrant mothers’ identities and philosophies of education in England during COVID
Team members: Aliya Khalid, Jane Rooney and Ruth Houghton, Lavinia Kamphausen, Kate spencer-Bennet, Alana Farrel
Funder: The British Academy
Status: Complete

4. Collaborative development of faculty for Pakistan undergraduate Teacher Education Colleges: Durbeen and Oxford knowledge exchange project
Team members: Aliya Khalid, Ann Childs, Trevor Mutton, Ian Thompson, Jenni Ingram and Katharine Burn
Funder: Malala Fund
Status: Ongoing


  • Khalid, A., Holmes, G., … Parpart, J. (Eds.). (2023). The politics of silence, voice and the in-between: exploring gender, race and insecurity from the margins. Routledge.

  • Book chapters
  • Khalid, A., Holmes, G., & Parpart, J. (2023). Introduction: theorising liminal spaces of silence, voice and the ‘in-between’ during political instability, precarity and violence. In A. Khalid, G. Holmes, & J. Parpart (Eds.), The Politics of Silence, Voice and the In-Between: Exploring Gender, Race and Insecurity from the Margins (pp. 1-15). Routledge.

  • Journal articles
  • Khalid, A. (2023). Mothers and their daughters’ education: a comparison of global and local aspirations. Comparative Education, 59(2), 259-281.

  • Khalid, A., & Singal, N. (2023). Parents as partners in education during COVID-19-related school closures in England: challenges and opportunities identified by parents with Pakistani and Bangladeshi heritage. JOURNAL OF FAMILY STUDIES, 29(4), 1822-1846.

  • Khalid, A., & Singal, N. (2022). Parents as partners in education during COVID-19-related school closures in England: challenges and opportunities identified by parents with Pakistani and Bangladeshi heritage. Journal of Family Studies, 29(4), 1822-1846.

  • Khalid, A., & Rose, P. (2022). “We look ahead where his thoughts never reach”: Pakistani mothers’ agency to expand educational opportunities for their daughters and the theorisation of negative capability. Journal of Human Development and Capabilities, 24(1), 98-117.

  • Khalid, A. (2022). The negotiations of Pakistani mothers’ agency with structure: towards a research practice of hearing ‘silences’ as a strategy. Gender and Education, 34(6), 659-673.

  • Other
  • Khalid, A., Kamphausen, L., & Spencer-Bennet, K. (2023). Pakistani and Bangladeshi heritage mothers’ provision of primary education to their children in England during COVID-19: recommendations for involving mothers in policy decision-making processes. In Routledge Open Research (Vols. 2). Routledge.