PhD Student Profile

Lidis Garbovan

Lidis Garbovan

PhD Student/University Instructor 

School: School of Psychology, Politics and Sociology

Campus: Canterbury

Project title

Politicizing migrant identities in India: between hybrid spaces and micro-narratives in exile.

Supervisors: Dr. Harshad Keval (Sociology) and Dr. Lorena Arocha (Sociology)

Profile summary

My PhD Research explores the current meanings and practices of fluid citizenship and migrant identities in the Global South. I focus particularly on how migrant identities are politicized in contemporary India. The most privileged group of migrants has arguably been the Tibetan refugees, who have fled to India since 1959, led by their spiritual and political leader, the Dalai Lama. Tibetans constitute a very particular case of sociological analysis. They managed to maintain their identity in exile but are now situated in-between two aims:  remaining Tibetan refugees or becoming Indian citizens.


I completed my BA in Sociology and my MA in Sociology and Social Anthropology from Central European University, Budapest, Hungary (2010). I won a scholarship by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations in 2011 and studied at Hindi Language Institute for Foreigners in New Delhi, India.

Previous to my PhD studies I worked in various institutions. In 2013-2015 I was involved in a collaborative research project with the Research Institute for Common Economic Growth (ICEG), Budapest, funded by USAID. I also worked with several NGOs in the field of migration, refugees and development, in Hungary, Germany and the Gambia and more recently, in the UK. Since 2017 I have been a Research Affiliate of the Center for the Study of Law and Governance, at Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi.

My research interests focus on migration and refugees, asylum policies, gender and culture, citizenship, identity and belonging. 

Teaching and Subject Expertise

  • Level 4 – Sociological Imagination
  • Level 5 – Divisions, Diversity and Difference I
  • Level 6 – Divisions, Diversity and Difference II
  • Level 7 – Migration, movement and belonging
  • Level 7 – Qualitative Research Methods
  • Individual Study (Dissertation) supervision on the topics: Migration and child trafficking, Women oppression in India and the UK, Honour killing and violence against women.

Research Outputs


Garbovan, L. (2016), Reflections on a Journey of 1,242 miles, Blog post available at

Garbovan, L (2016), In the Rains of McLeod Ganj, Blog post available at:

Garbovan, L (2015), Mobilities and Experiences of (un)Welcoming Refugees in Hungary: Towards an End of Human Rights and Democracy? Migration Studies Journal, ISSN 0039-2936, No. 199 (2015),pp. 342-356

Conference Participation

June 2017: The PhD Forum’s 4th Annual Research Conference, Sheffield Hallam University. Poster presented: Politicizing migrant identities in India: Between third spaces and micro-narratives in exile

June 2016: ‘Fieldwork: doing ethnographic research’, Birmingham City University.
Paper presented: Micro-narratives of knowledge in Exile. Towards a Post-critical Ethnography?

May 2016: Chair of the Panel on Identity, Linguistics and Stylistics, at the Post Graduate Research Conference, Canterbury Christ Church University

July, 2015: ‘Migration, Human Rights and Democracy’, University of Palermo, Italy.
Paper presented: Mobilities and Experiences of (un)welcoming refugees in Hungary: Towards an End of Human Rights and Democracy?


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Last edited: 15/12/2018 13:41:00