Dr Liz Stainforth

Dr Liz Stainforth


I completed my undergraduate degree in English Literature and Philosophy at the University of Leeds in 2008, before commencing study in the School in 2010. The topic of my doctoral research (2012-2016) was informed by my interest in digital heritage collections, and cultures of memory and technology. From 2007-2017, I worked at Leeds University Library and Galleries, alongside my studies, where I was involved in projects with the Digital Content and Repositories Team, Special Collections and the Stanley & Audrey Burton Gallery. I became a Lecturer in the School in 2017. From 2016-2018, I worked as a Research Associate on the collaborative place development projects My Future York and My Castle Gateway. In 2018 I held Postdoctoral Fellowships at the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities (University of Edinburgh) and the Digital Studio/eScholarship Research Centre (University of Melbourne).


  • Programme Director for MA Curating Science

Research interests

My research interests include digital heritage and memory cultures, theories of utopia and critical studies of history and heritage. I have several secondary research interests, primarily in early printed books, literary studies and science fiction.

Research Roles

2018 – Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Digital Studio/eScholarship Research Centre (University of Melbourne, Endeavour-funded Fellowship): project focusing on Trove, a digital heritage aggregator hosted by the National Library of Australia, and the negotiation of public space, collections preservation and cultural engagement in the digital environment.

2018 – Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities (University of Edinburgh): project exploring the landscape of UK digital culture and heritage in relation to the future shape and extent of national heritage cultures.

2017-2018 – Research Associate, My Castle Gateway: collaborative consultation project about the development of the Castle Gateway area in York, linking creative and ongoing public engagement with the formal planning process (led by Helen Graham).

2016-2017 – Research Associate, My Future York: collaborative inquiry project exploring alternative futures in relation to practices of community heritage and local democracy in the city of York. Funded as part of the AHRC’s Connected Communities Festival (led by Helen Graham).

2015-2018 – Associate Editor of parallax, a journal of cultural studies, critical theory and philosophy.

2014-present – Co-Principal Investigator, All and Each: Dialogues in the Digital Archive: ongoing collaborative research project about digital archiving practices with Rhiannon Bettivia (Simmons University).

2013-2014 – Principal Investigator, AHRC Collaborative Skills Development Project: workshop funding on the theme of ‘Co-producing Cultural Policy’ (Co-Investigators Alice Borchi and Leila Jancovich).

2012-2013 – Co-Investigator, Leeds Impact and Innovation Award: funding to run a research symposium in Leeds University Library's Special Collections (Principal Investigator Nick Cass).

Conferences and Seminar Series

2018-2019 – The Transcultural Fantastic: Sadler seminar series exploring the traditions of the Fantastic in art, fiction and film from a transcultural and interdisciplinary perspective (co-organised at Leeds with Ingo Cornils and Sarah Dodd).

2018 – Exploring Digital Public Spaces: one-day conference on changing conceptions of public space in the contemporary media and political environment (organised at the University of Edinburgh).

2017-2018 – The Spirit and the Letter: Sadler seminar series focusing on utopian print cultures, critical design practice and radical histories and imaginaries of community (co-organised at Leeds with Paul Wilson).

2014 – Landscapes of Tomorrow: J.G. Ballard in Space and Time: one-day conference on the writer J.G. Ballard (co-organised at Leeds with Richard Brown and Christopher Duffy).

<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="https://ahc.leeds.ac.uk/dir/research-projects">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>


  • PhD Media and Heritage Studies
  • MA Art Gallery and Museum Studies
  • BA English Literature and Philosophy

Professional memberships

  • Association of Critical Heritage Studies

Student education

I am Programme Director for the MA Curating Science. I supervise doctoral research in the fields of museology and critical heritage studies, focusing on approaches to digital collecting and practices of collaborative livelihood and survival. I also teach and supervise dissertations on the BA Liberal Arts, MA Arts Management and Heritage Studies, and MA Art Gallery and Museum Studies.

Research groups and institutes

  • Centre for Critical Studies in Museums, Galleries and Heritage
  • Centre for Cultural Policy
<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>We welcome enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="https://phd.leeds.ac.uk">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>