Sara Kaizuka

Sara Kaizuka


I joined the University of Leeds School of Politics and International Studies as an MA student in Politics in 2018 and continued my studies as a PGR student in 2019.

I was born in Tokyo, Japan and I previously lived in France as a young child and moved back to Tokyo where I completed my pre-university and undergraduate studies.

Prior to coming to Leeds, I obtained a BA in international liberal studies (with a focus on international relations) at the School of International Liberal Studies (SILS) from Waseda University in 2018. I also studied at the European Social and Political Studies at University College London (UCL) between 2015 and 2016 as an exchange student with a scholarship from Japan Student Service Organisation (JASSO). I obtained an MA in Politics from the University of Leeds in 2019.

Since 2018, I have been living near Wakefield where I plan to conduct case studies for my PhD thesis. I currently work as a Link to Leeds ambassador for the International Student Office at the University of Leeds and as an Education Outreach Fellow. I am also a part-time translator from Japanese to English. 

Research interests

My primary interests are regional inequality and regional developmental issues in the UK, and especially in the North of England. I am also interested in the European Cohesion Policy and its effects and reception in the North of England. I am interested in relating this to the 2016 EU referendum result. I lean towards the economic explanation of Brexit in terms of the current literature on the topic. My previous thesis during my undergraduate studies and Masters studies were both related to Brexit.

For my undergraduate thesis I wrote a general analysis on why people voted to Leave and for my Masters thesis I also focused on Brexit and how the EU was represented in the UK. My current PhD thesis is an accumulation of these works, but with a specific focus on the European Cohesion Policy, how it relates to regional development issues in the North of England, and whether it had any effect on the Leave vote, if at all. My research is interdisciplinary in nature with interests ranging from human geography, politics, EU studies, and economics. 


  • MA Politics from University of Leeds
  • BA International Liberal Studies from Waseda University