Emily Wertans

Research Assistant

A headshot of Emily. She is sat at a table wearing a black jumper with her left arm resting on the desk in front of her.

School/Department: Criminology, School of; Hate Studies, Centre for



Emily Wertans is a Research Assistant for the Centre for Hate Studies and supports the various current and upcoming research projects of the team, as well as improving local and national understanding on how to receive and respond to hate. Emily is also completing a PhD exploring hate, harassment and mistreatment directed towards homeless people within Leicester. Within this research she uses creative and arts-based research methods to support diverse and seldom-heard voices in communicating their experiences, feelings and views.


Emily has worked on a variety of research projects, both within the community and charity sector and within an academic context. Her research has focused on various forms of victimisation, including hate crime, hostility within a higher education landscape, violence directed towards homeless populations and gender-based violence.

She specialises in identity-based harassment and hate directed towards homeless people and explores this in her doctoral research. Within this work, Emily works closely with practitioners, those with lived experience and the wider homelessness sector to generate meaningful and evidence-lead, trauma-informed change to policy and practice.

Emily is primarily a qualitative researcher and regularly draws upon creative and arts-based research methods as an avenue of conducting ethical research with seldom-heard groups.


Journal Articles

Wertans, E. & Chakraborti, N. (2024) To deny or dismantle? Responding to victims of targeted hostility in higher education, The International Review of Victimology, forthcoming.

Gies, L., Gogoi, M., Bayliss, C., Pareek, M., Webb, A., Chakraborti, N. & Wertans, E. (2023) Hate crime during the COVID-19 pandemic: A qualitative study of the experiences of an ethnically diverse university student population, Covid, 3(2) pp.151-165.

Suhomlinova, O., O’Reilly, M., Ayres, T., Wertans, E., Tonkin, M. & O’Shea, S. (2022) ‘Gripping onto the last threads of sanity’: Transgender and non-binary prisoners’ mental health challenges during the Covid-19 pandemic, The International Journal of Mental Health, pp.1-21.

Wertans, E. & Burch, L. (2022) ‘It’s backdoor accessibility’: Disabled students’ navigation of university campus, Journal for Disability Studies in Education, 3(1) pp.57-78.

Suhomlinova, O., Ayres, T., Tonkin, M., O’Reilly, M., Wertans, E. & O’Shea, S. (2021) Locked up While Locked Down: Prisoners’ Experiences of the COVID-19 Pandemic, The British Journal of Criminology, 62(2) pp.279-298.


Urwin, J. & Wertans, E. (2023) Process and outcome evaluation of the community leadership programme. Leicester: Office for the Police and Crime Commissioner/Violence Reduction Network.

Stone, B. & Wertans, E. (2023) Homelessness and Disability in the UK. London: Centre for Homelessness Impact

Wertans, E. and Chakraborti, N. (2021) Catalyst for Change: Recognising and Responding to Students’ Experiences of Harassment. Leicester: University of Leicester

The Femicide Census (2020) Femicide Census: 10 year report. London: Nia.

The Femicide Census (2019) Annual Report on UK Femicides 2018. London: Nia.


Dawkins, J. & Wertans, E. (2023) Battling drugs in prison: Using battleships as a tool for learning. The Chartered Society of Forensic Science.

Stone, B. & Wertans, E. (2023) Disabled people are disproportionately affected by homelessness – and getting support feels 'nearly impossible'. The Conversation.

Wertans, E. (2020) Homeless Hate: The pandemic’s impact on prejudice. International Network for Hate studies.

Wertans, E. (2019) Who are stalkers?. Brighton: Veritas Justice.

Wertans, E. (2019) What is stalking?. Brighton: Veritas Justice.



Emily has been a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy since 2023.

She has experience teaching Undergraduate and Postgraduate Criminology students on topics including: Criminal Justice in Action, Theories of Crime, Research Methods, Drugs and Crime, Hate Crime and Forensic Science. She has also supervised a Undergraduate dissertation students on a range of qualitative projects, primarily relating to victimisation, hate crime, policing and extremism.

Emily has spoken at numerous conferences and undertaken research on various learning, teaching and pedagogy matters, including neurodiversity in higher education, student victimisation in higher education and how student background impacts engagement in learning activities.


Disability and Homelessness in the UK - EIS: Evidence & Implementation Summit (Oct 2023)

Law Students and Inclusion, Diversity and Wellbeing - Enhancing Clinical Legal Education in Europe (July 2023)

Disability and Homelessness in the UK - Centre for Homelessness Impact (May 2023)

Tackling hate and harassment in Higher Education: Thinking creatively and inclusively about research and policy-making - Safeguarding Students in Higher Education Government Conference (Feb 2023)

Researcher Vulnerability within Homelessness Research - Qualitative Research Symposium (Feb 2022)

Student Harassment at University: A Case Study Approach - Safeguarding Students in Higher Education Government Conference (Jan 2022)

The Forgotten Victims of Hate Crime - British Society of Criminology Hate Crime Network (Aug 2021)

Hate and Harassment in Higher Education Learning Lunch - Office for Students (July 2021)

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