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Professional headshot of Research Fellow Juliana Mainard-Sardon

Juliana Mainard-Sardon

Research Fellow

Nottingham Business School


Juliana is employed at NTU as a Research Fellow at the VCSE Data and Insights National Observatory. The National Observatory provides a one-stop source of interactive data intelligence for policymakers, infrastructure and frontline organisations, and researchers in the Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE) Sector at a national level.

Juliana’s provides a key role in curating VCSE qualitative and quantitative data, which helps guide key stakeholders to make decisions about the sector health, finance, and contribution to the society. As an experienced researcher, she helps establish research objectives and proposals for both individual organisations, and joint research in VCSE sector – this includes being involved in both qualitative (interviews, focus groups etc.) and quantitative projects, such as developing questionnaires and aiding survey design. Juliana is also involved in producing research reports for publications and presenting relevant information at conferences and symposiums to project stakeholders and wider audiences. Additional duties include preparing project proposals and funding applications for external bodies, alongside planning, and managing her own and/or collaborative research and associated activity - including exploring opportunities for developing external links and consultancy opportunities in collaboration with colleagues across and beyond the University.

Career overview

Juliana has been part of a number of projects with the Centre for People, Work and Organizational Practice (CPWOP). This includes part of a national multi-organisational research team, who conducted the largest UK study of the impact of Covid-19 on the voluntary sector, a rapid evidence assessment of wellbeing in work, and co-lead on an evaluation project for an external organisation operating in the VCSE sector to help inform their future plans.

Alongside her research, Juliana provided lectures, seminar tutorials and marking for undergraduate and postgraduate students in the Management & Organisation Division and Work & Employment Division, at the University of Leicester. Her taught areas were Human Resource Management and Organisational Studies. She was a Teaching Fellow for the University of Mar del Plata, Argentina and for the Polytechnic University of Catalunya (UPC), Spain. She also delivered lectures at Universidad Federal do Estado do Rio de Janeiro (UNIRIO), Brazil.

Outside of academia, Juliana has also worked as a Funding Manager for the Peepul Centre, one of the UK’s largest BAME social enterprises, with sole responsibility for fundraising, partnership development and grant management. She was responsible for creating community engagement programmes in the fields of art, health and well-being and sport. She had successfully managed the grant claim process and completed the full claim process for Sport England funds, Arts Council England, the National Lottery, European Regional Development Fund, and different Trusts & Foundations. As a result, she had proven record in successful audit trails and had established robust funding systems and procedures.

Research areas

Juliana’s research interests centre around developing current understanding of the VCSE’s organisations, through their everyday experiences. Her doctoral thesis was an ethnographic exploration of the ways in which third sector workers are experiencing the silent power of neoliberalism and its impact on their own lives, practices, and organisations - drawing on Byung-Chul Han’s concepts of the achievement society.

Her post-doc at the Faculty of Media and Communication at Bournemouth University examined the impact of digital stories to develop community-enterprises initiatives in Brazil, Malaysia and Mozambique. Juliana has also been a research fellow on the Lockdown Stories project at the University of Leicester, which focussed on improving understanding of the responses of Rio de Janeiro favela tour guides to the COVID-19 crisis.

Methodologically, Juliana favours qualitative approaches, including the use of different participatory and visual methodologies to explore digital media tools for activism and social movements. Part of her additional project work can be found on the University of Nottingham Ecological Reparation YouTube channel.

External activity

Juliana is a Peer Reviewer for the Journal of Organizational Ethnography and volunteers for several local charities in Leicestershire.


Brown, S.D., Dahill, D., Baczor, L., King, D., Smith, S. and Mainard-Sardon, J., 2022. Seafarers' psychological wellbeing: a rapid evidence assessment. Nottingham: Nottingham Trent University.

King, D, Chan, O, Coule, T, Dahill, D, Mainard-Sardon, J, Martin, A, Rossiter, W, Smith, S, Stuart, J, Vahidi, G and Ibokessien, N (2022), Respond, Recover, Reset: Two Years On, Nottingham Trent University, Centre for People, Work and Organisational Practice.

Moraes C, de La Vega B, Frenzel F, Rega I, Mainard-Sardon J (2022) Favela Virtual Tour: alternative mobilities in favela tourism during convid-19 pandemic, Alternative (Im)Mobilities, Editor Nogueira, M., 1st Edition, Routledge Series, Routledge

Moraes C, de La Vega B, Frenzel F, Rega I, Mainard-Sardon J (2022) Favela Virtual Tour: tourism mobility in favelas in the context of the covid-19 pandemic, Cadernos de Arte e Antropologia, Vol 11, 1 (97-113)

Mainard-Sardon, J. (2021): Experiencing the everyday busyness of the ‘achievement-subject’: An organisational ethnographic study of third sector workers. University of Leicester. Thesis.


Rega, I. and Mainard-Sardon, J. (Eds.) (2022). Virtual Storymap: A map that tells a story. Practitioner Toolkit. CEMP, Bournemouth University.

Rega, I. and Mainard-Sardon, J. (Eds.) (2022). Local Heritage and Sustainability: Promoting reflection and sharing within and across international communities. Final Report for Practitioners. CEMP, Bournemouth University.

Press expertise

Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise Sector

Community Entrepreneurship in the Global South