The Team

We are a multidisciplinary team of researchers interrogating forced marriage through a modern slavery lens. Based in the University of Nottingham’s Rights Lab, we work at the intersection of theory, practice and policy to help drive efforts to enact evidence-based action towards ending forced marriage by 2030 in line with the Sustainable Development Goals.

Helen McCabe

Assistant Professor in Political Theory, AHRC Fellow.

Dr. Helen McCabe leads the Rights Lab’s work on forced marriage, as part of its Law and Policy Programme. Her research background is in the history of political thought, including early feminist analyses of marriage.

In January 2020 Dr McCabe became an AHRC Early Careers Researcher Leadership Fellow, and since November 2020 has been Principal Investigator on an ESRC-funded COVID-19 Rapid Response Grant investigating the impact of the global pandemic on forced marriage in the UK. She also works with researchers in Kenya on a GCRF-funded project working with survivors of human trafficking on using techniques from ethical story-telling and participatory photography to inform anti-trafficking work in the region.

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Lauren Eglen

Rights Lab Research Fellow in Survivor Narratives.

Lauren works as part of the Rights Lab’s Law and Policy Programme to expand our database of modern slavery survivor narrative. This database, Voices, is the world’s largest archive of survivor testimonies. She also works on the AHRC-funded research project led by Helen McCabe on forced marriage, gathering and analysing narratives by survivors of forced marriage. Her research background is in gender and social justice movements.

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Rowland Seymour

Rights Lab Research Fellow in Spatial Statistics

Dr Rowland Seymour (Mathematical Sciences) is an EPSRC Doctoral Prize Fellow and part of the Rights Lab’s Data and Measurement Programme. His current work focuses on developing data collection methods for topics which are sensitive, difficult to define or require extensive fieldwork, including forced marriage. His particular expertise is in spatial modelling, where spatial information is used to make the models more efficient and reduce the amount of fieldwork required. He has developed comparative judgment methodology for estimating deprivation levels in urban areas in developing countries, where citizens were asked to compare different areas of their city based on deprivation. He is working on risk modelling for forced marriage in the UK.

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Rebecca Brown

Rights Lab Research Assistant and PhD Candidate


Rebecca Brown is a Research Assistant at the Rights Lab’s work on forced marriage, as part of its Law and Policy Programme. Her research background is in modern slavery and human trafficking policy. Her PhD is titled “The Politics of Anti-Slavery Governance: the UK and Australia in Comparative Perspective”, exploring the genesis of how The UK Modern Slavery Act (2015) and the Australian MSA (2018) came to successful fruition, and to what degree their policy processes are comparable.

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The Forced Marriage research team has also included Dr Hannah Baumeister, Dr Rumana Hashem, Hannah Coggins and Fiona Collins-Taylor.

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