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Centre for Geopolitics

Providing historically-grounded solutions to enduring geopolitical problems
 
Hugo Bromley
Ax:son Johnson Research Assistant in Applied History
Biography: 

Hugo Bromley is an Ax:son Johnson Research Assistant in Applied History at the Centre for Geopolitics. He is currently working to support our Baltic Geopolitics programme, as well as hosting a podcast entitled the Geopolitics of Finance, and organising the Centre’s podcast channel.  

Hugo is a second year PhD student at the University of Cambridge. His research explores the history of economic protectionism. His PhD studies the popular origins of mercantilism in England at the start of the long eighteenth century. By exploring the impact of global trade and transnational migration on English textile manufacturing, the project charts how global encounters situated in England shaped the development of English and later British political economy.

Before joining the Centre for Geopolitics, Hugo worked as a researcher at the International Financial Law Review and as a reporter at IFLR Practice Insight. He received a Distinction in his MPhil from the University of Cambridge, and graduated with a first in International History from the London School of Economics. Hugo also leads undergraduate seminars at Cambridge on Economic and Social History, 1500-1750, and Historical Argument and Practice.

Research Assistant
Biography: 

Rachel is a final year PhD student at the Faculty of Divinity, where she is examining how angels are depicted in the Qur’ān. Rachel has a background in both Islamic and biblical studies, and is interested in how the Qur'an relates to late antique, Jewish and Christian narratives in a wide-range of languages. She has a background in modern European languages, and studied modern Middle Eastern politics and history, before focussing on early Islam and the Qur'an. In the Middle East, she has spent time in Syria, the Emirates, Morocco, Jordan, and Israel-Palestine. Rachel is also particularly interested in the culture, history, and politics of the Caucasus and East Africa - both regions she has travelled to as part of her research on late antique texts.

Rachel is also currently a part-time postdoctoral research assistant at the Faculty of Theology, at the University of Oxford.

Ax:son Johnson Research Assistant in Applied History
Biography: 

John Freeman is a third year PhD student at the University of Cambridge, studying in the history faculty. His research focuses on the Duchy of Courland, a small early modern polity in the Eastern Baltic, and its attempts to establish outposts in Africa and the Caribbean during the seventeenth century. The study aims to connect the Baltic and Atlantic spaces by comparing the concept of the colonial in these two areas, whilst also investigating the particular contexts informing interaction during Courland’s period of attempted expansion. Previously, John completed his MA at the School for Slavonic and East European Studies at University College London. There he wrote on the dispute at the League of Nations over the control of Vilnius in the early 1920s and the use of history by the Polish and Lithuanian delegations. At Cambridge, John has taught on the topics of pre-1914 global history and oceanic historical approaches.

Philipp Hirsch
Ax:son Johnson Research Assistant in Applied History
Biography: 

Philipp Hirsch is a PhD Candidate at the Department for Politics and International Studies (POLIS) at Cambridge University. His dissertation deals with German-Arab relations during the Cold War. He has been published in the journal 'Cold War History' and won the 2019 Best Graduate Student Paper Award by the Society for Terrorism Studies (STR) for his paper entitled "Politics as counterterrorism: the role of diplomacy in the West German response to Palestinian terror, 1970–75."

He previously worked in German parliament, the German Federal Foreign Office and UNDP.

Sophia RC Johnson photo
Convener, Reading group ‘Global political theologies’ (2020-2021)
Biography: 

Sophia R.C. Johnson is a PhD Candidate at the Faculty of Divinity, specialising in the Old Testament/Hebrew Bible. Her PhD research traces the historical development of the conception of “covenant” in the biblical books of 1 & 2 Samuel to show how subsequent interpretation of the text was influenced by the ever-changing political landscape of the ancient Israelite community. She completed her MPhil in Cambridge on the ancient Near Eastern legal background of the oath between the biblical figures of David and Jonathan. She also studied ancient history and archeology at Jerusalem University College in Israel.

Sophia is especially interested in the relationship between ideas about covenant, state, and national identity in relation to the reception history of Old Testament narratives. She is guest-editor for the Journal of the Bible and its Reception towards a special issue “Old Testament Imaginaries of the Nation in German, Dutch, and Anglo-American Political Thought” (forthcoming 2021). She co-chairs the Miqra Society, the Hebrew Bible graduate research seminar, and acts as the Old Testament representative for the Divinity Faculty Anti-Racism Working Group.

Ax:son Johnson Research Assistant in Applied History
Biography: 

James is is a Research Assistant at the Centre for Geopolitics, and the holder of the JH Plumb Scholarship at Christ’s College. He is in the second year of his PhD in Politics and International Studies, and his research is into theorisations of popular sovereignty as a political fiction. 

Christopher Wadibia
Ax:son Johnson Research Assistant in Applied History
Biography: 

Christopher Wadibia is a third year PhD candidate in the Faculty of Divinity and Selwyn College studying the relationship between Pentecostalism and sustainable development in Nigeria. Before coming to Cambridge, Christopher completed a BA inGovernment at Georgetown University in 2016, won a Fulbright research grant with the United States Department of State to study Muslim-Christian relations in Nigeria in 2017, and completed an MPhil in Intercultural Theology and Interreligious Studies at Trinity College Dublin in 2018 where he won the James Haire Prize for Outstanding Coursework. Christopher's doctoral research seeks to explain how the themes of power politics and capacity-building inform the social development enterprises of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), one of Nigeria's most sociopolitically influential indigenous Pentecostal churches. Alongside his appointment as an Ax:son Johnson Research Assistant in Applied History for the Centre for Geopolitics, Christopher also serves as an Honorary PhD Scholar at the Woolf Institute, assistant editor for the academic journal PentecoStudies, and as a convener for Cambridge University's Protestant Political Thought (PPT) reading group.