Alison Jeffers is a Lecturer in Applied Theatre and Contemporary Performance at the University of Manchester where she has worked since 2009.
Her research interests include: cultural democracy; applied theatre practice and research methodologies; participatory theatre with marginalised groups; community arts history and practice; performances of citizenship and belonging. Her practical interests include storytelling and adaptation in performance, site specific practices and autobiographical performance. Between 2005 and 2010 she undertook drama work with refugees and asylum seekers who are survivors of torture at Freedom from Torture in Manchester.
Her most recent research concerns historical and contemporary understandings of cultural democracy seen through the lens of the British Community Arts Movement of the 1970s and 1980s. This involved interviewing artists active in the early years of the movement, working in a number of private archives and uncovering a wealth of material from that period. The results of that research can be seen in Culture Democracy and the Right to Make Art, a co-edited book with artist Gerri Moriarty, published by Bloomsbury Methuen in 2017. In 2018 this book was awarded Gold Open Access status, enabled through institutional funds from the University of Manchester.