Wearing a hijab and standing in front of a bookcase, Dr Laura Jones smiles at the camera.

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Dr Laura Jones BSc, MTh, MA, PhD, AFHEA

Post-Doctoral Researcher (Digital British Islam)

E-mail: laura.jones@uwtsd.ac.uk

I am a Post-Doctoral Researcher on the ESRC-funded Digital British Islam project which explores the impact of online environments on the everyday lives of British Muslims. I work in a multi-disciplinary team of researchers based at UWTSD, Coventry University and the University of Edinburgh.

My primary role is the development of an online archive of British Muslim websites (using Archive-It software) alongside an in-depth analysis of British Muslim online spaces. I contribute to other areas of the project including the methodological development of solicited diaries which explore participant experiences of digital environments. I deliver conference presentations, engage in impact activities and contribute to publications related to the project.

I am a social scientist in the field of Religious Studies with broad experience of qualitative research methods. As a Masters’ student, I engaged with semi-structured interviews and ethnographic observational research. During my PhD, I expanded this to include digital photo diaries in my repertoire of research techniques. I have a broad experience in the field of British Muslim Studies having researched various topics including Muslim chaplaincy, Muslims in the media, inter-faith activities and religious rituals.

My PhD explored lived religion during the month of Ramadan, particularly engaging with Bauer’s (2021) theory of “cultural ambiguity”. It explored the significance of food, ritual worship, collective and individual practices and Muslim understandings of sacredness. I also discussed gendered aspects of the month and domestic life. Additionally, I developed an expertise in online research methods including digital photo diaries and online interviewing. My fieldwork took place during the 2020 COVID-19 lockdown and I explored the impacts of this in my thesis and associated journal article (‘Isolation, community and spirituality: British Muslim experiences of Ramadan in lockdown’).

I am a qualified chaplain and have experience working as a chaplain in a university. I have a further interest in mental health having worked for various mental health charities.

I am a fluent Welsh speaker and have ample experience communicating my research on the radio and through school visits. I am a regular media contributor on BBC Radio Cymru and S4C.

  • Muslims in Britain Research Network
  • British Association of Islamic Studies
  • British Sociological Association – Sociology of Religion Group
  • British Association for the Study of Religions
  • Lived/everyday religion
  • Religious ritual
  • Digital religion
  • Diary research and ethnographic methods
  • Participant-led research methods
  • Feminist research methodologies
  • Jones, L. 2022. Ramadan in the UK: a month of ambiguity. PhD Thesis, Cardiff University.
  • Jones-Ahmed, L. 2022. Isolation, community and spirituality: British Muslim experiences of Ramadan in lockdown. Religions 13(1), article number: 74. (10.3390/rel13010074)
  • Jones-Ahmed, L. 2022. A culture of ambiguity: an alternative history of Islam [Book Review]. Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations 33(1), pp. 91-93. (10.1080/09596410.2021.2018798)
  • Jones, L. 2021. Islam on campus: contested identities & the cultures of higher education in Britain [Book Review]. Journal of Contemporary Religion 36(3), pp. 585-587. (10.1080/13537903.2021.1935486)
  • Jones, L. 2020. Lockdown Ramadan: researching religion using visual methods [Blog], BSA SocRel blog.