Dr Yecid Ortega is a lecturer of Applied Linguistics and TESOL at Queen's University Belfast (Northern Ireland, UK). In this project, Dr Ortega’s research draws upon critical complexity theories to explore the relational and sociopolitical dimensions of languages and cultures as experienced and enacted by those living in urban communities in metropolitan cities. 


Teresa Speciale PHD

My research and teaching bring decolonial and critical perspectives to the fields of comparative and international education, language and education policy and practice, anthropology of education, and African studies. Through this interdisciplinary lens, I conceptualize education as a site of fraught convergence between people’s lived experiences and aspirations, policy frameworks, and structural constraints. My research is broadly concerned with how language ideologies, practices, and policies intersect with identity markers such as race and ethnicity, socioeconomic background, and religious affiliation to shape students’ imagined futures and life trajectories. My recent research was a 16-month multi-sited ethnography in Dakar, Senegal that explored how students at two different private secondary schools (one secular, one Islamic) with distinct languages of instruction (French-English and French-Arabic) negotiated rhetorical, material, and spiritual discourses about educational success.

Fionnghuala Nic Roibeaird

I am a PhD researcher examining the relationship between Gaeloideachas (Irish language education) and community regeneration and language reclamation in iarthair Bhéal Feirste (west Belfast).  I am from Béal Feirste and was raised bilingually with Gaeilge and English in my home and I attended Gaeloideachas which massively shaped my own commitments to decolonisation, social justice, and education.  I have a history in political organising for feminist, anarchist, and anti-fascist causes and within these movements I was emphatic about the use of agitation and propaganda in the form of graffiti, posters, and videos to draw attention to these campaigns for social justice.  My research interests include language reclamation, decolonisation, and movements for social justice. 

Cristina Martínez López 

I am a PhD researcher investigating the construction and negotiation of language teacher identities in a non-formal adult ESOL setting in Belfast (Northern Ireland). My research looks at how language ideologies, teaching practices, and social interactions contribute to shape our identity as teachers and defines our belonging into a community. As originally from Spain and settled in a pluricultural city like Belfast for more than five years, I understand the importance of intercultural and linguistic diversity that embraces and shapes our daily experiences and interactions. My research interests are on language teacher identity, raciolinguistics, language ideologies and bi/multilingualism. 

wales wong 

I am a PhD candidate in the Department of Curriculum, Teaching and Learning at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto. My current research analyzes what ESL teachers understand about translanguaging and how they implement translanguaging strategies with adult students in a continuing education program in Ontario, Canada. I lived in the United States and Hong Kong before moving to Canada where I eventually found my calling as a teacher. These migrations gifted me the opportunities to live in diverse communities where plurilingualism and pluriculturalism flourish. My research interests are inspired by multimodal and arts-based methodologies to explore innovative possibilities in language education.

Alexandra Philbing 

Dia daoibh! I'm Alex, and I'm a PhD researcher in Social Sciences at the University of València. My research focuses on the experiences of speakers of minoritised languages in cities, particularly Irish speakers in Dublin and Catalan/Valencian speakers in València. Using mobile methods, I am studying the ways city-based minoritised-language speakers use language and the space of the city, and how they understand their own relationship to the city as speakers. If I'm not talking about languages in the city, I'm probably talking about my animal comrades, such as Frida the dog (pictured).  


I am doing a master’s degree in TESOL and Applied Linguistics at Queen’s University Belfast. I also hold a master’s degree in Educational Leadership. Education, communication and linguistics have been my major professional and research focus for an extended period of time. Moving to Belfast in 2020, I was fascinated by its unique and complex cultural and historical legacy. While doing my master’s degree in Educational Leadership, my research shed light on the communication problems between the Education Authority and school teachers in Belfast, which provided first-hand insights into the local communities, their values and struggles. I have extensive experience teaching English as a foreign language to Russian students in state and private language schools, which has highlighted the paramount importance of school policies and diverse language exposure in local communities.