Prof. Michalis Kontopodis

Prof. Michalis Kontopodis


Prof. Michalis Kontopodis is a Chair in Global Childhood and Youth Studies and Director of the ICY: Inclusion, Childhood & Youth Research Centre at the University of Leeds. His background comprises psychology, anthropology and education with recent publications on digital childhoods and globalisation “from below”. He accomplished his PhD in 2007 at the Free University Berlin and held the following positions before moving to the University of Leeds in 2018: 

  • 2016-2018: Senior Lecturer, University of Sheffield, UK
  • 2014-2016: Senior Lecturer, Roehampton University London, UK
  • 2013-2014: Assistant Professor, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • 2011-2012: Post-Doc Researcher, University of Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • 2007-2010: Post-Doc Researcher, Humboldt University Berlin, Germany

His visiting scholarships & professorships include a few of the most highly-ranked universities around the globe: Pontíficia Universidade Católica de São Paulo, Brazil; Escuela Normal del Estado, Mexico; Jawaharlal Nehru University, India; Moscow State University of Psychology & Education and City University of New York, US.


  • Director, ICY: Inclusion, Childhood & Youth Research Centre
  • Member of Editorial Board: Current Anthropology; European Journal of Psychology & Education
  • Founding Editor: Peter Lang International Book Series: (Post-)Critical Global Studies

Research interests

Prof. Kontopodis's scholarship is at the frontier of Global Childhood and Youth Studies with three foci: (a) addressing challenges related to global debt, poverty and marginalisation; (b) innovating pedagogies with new media and digital technologies; (c) deciphering the multiple links between child health, ecology and technoscience. In collaboration with a wide network of academics, practitioners, NGOs, community organisations and policy makers, Prof. Kontopodis conducts research on inclusive and equitable quality education, digital transformation and globalisation “from below”. His books, edited volumes and journal articles have been published in 6 languages; for further details please visit

Recent projects include: 

Makerspaces in the Early Years: Enhancing Digital Literacy & Creativity. EU Marie Curie RISE. (PI: Prof. Jackie Marsh, University of Sheffield, 2017-2019).

Imagens, Tecnologias e Infâncias/ Images, Technologies & Childhoods. Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico, Brazil. External Advisor/ Universidade Federal do Espírito Santo (2015-2017).

Semiótica da Cultura e da Mídia/ Semiotics of Culture & Media. Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico, Brazil. External Advisor/ Pontifícia Universidade Católica de São Paulo. (2014-2016)

PI: Global Perspectives on Learning & Development with Digital Video-Editing Media. EU Marie Curie IRSES/ RISE. In collaboration with: University of Crete; Free University Berlin; UCL Institute of Education; Pontíficia Universidade Católica de São Paulo; Jawaharlal Nehru University & Moscow State University (2012–2014).

Book publications include:

Kontopodis, M.; Varvantakis, C. & Wulf, C. (Eds) (2019). Global Youth in Digital Trajectories. London: Routledge.

Kontopodis, M.; Magalhães, M.C. & Coracini, M.J. (Eds) (2016). Facing Poverty and Marginalization: 50 Years of Critical Research in Brazil. Bern: Peter Lang.

Kontopodis, M. (2014). Neoliberalism, Pedagogy and Human Development: London and New York: Routledge.

Kontopodis, M.; Wulf, C. & Fichtner, B. (Eds) (2011). Children, Development and Education: Cultural, Historical, Anthropological Perspectives. Dordrecht & New York: Springer.

Kontopodis, M. & Niewöhner, J. (Eds) (2010). Das Selbst als Netzwerk: Zum Einsatz von Körpern und Dingen im Alltag (The Self as Network: On the Employment of Bodies and Things in the Everyday). Bielefeld: transcript.

Kontopodis, M. (Ed) (2009). Children, Culture & Emerging Educational Challenges: A Dialogue with Brazil. Berlin: Lehmanns Media.

Open access & overview of publications in English, German, Portuguese, French, Greek & Russian:

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

Professional memberships

  • British Educational Research Association
  • German Society for Educational Science/ Deutsche Gesellschaft für Erziehungswissenschaft
  • International Society for Cultural-historical Activity Research (Former Secretary)

Student education

Prof. Michalis Kontopodis contributes to a variety of courses in childhood and youth studies across BA and MA and PhD programmes. He welcomes potential PhD students interested in childhood and youth, media and/or global education to contact him directly as to discuss their ideas and research proposals (spoken languages: English, German, French, Greek, Portuguese & Spanish).

Research groups and institutes

  • Centre for Digital Learning
  • ICY: Inclusion, Childhood & Youth Research Centre
  • Centre for Global Development
  • Leeds Social Science Institute

Current postgraduate researchers

<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>The school welcomes enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>