Melita Lazell
  • King Henry 1 Street, Park Building

    PO1 2DZ Portsmouth

    United Kingdom

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

political economy of development aid
securitisation of development and development aid
global governance of development
security-development nexus

Personal profile


I am Associate Professor in Political Economy and Development, and Associate Head of School (Research and Innovation). My most recent publications focus on the securitisation of both multilateral and bilateral development aid. I am currently engaged in the research project “Assessing the Shifting Character of Contemporary Intervention in West Africa”.

I joined the University of Portsmouth as a lecturer in 2014, having previously taught at University College London and the University of Southampton and worked for a European International Development NGO. I gained a distinction for an ESRC funded MSc in International Relations (Research) at the University of Southampton, before completing  an ESRC funded PhD in International Relations at the same institution

Research Interests

I am a political economist researching within the fields of security, development and aid, and international relations. I have a particular interest in the securitization of international development and development aid. Specifically, my recent research investigates the way in which securitization is reflected in the development policy discourse of bilateral and multilateral donors and the extent to which securitization is reflected in actual development programming and aid distribution. This research investigates, for example, how the national security interests of donors and the way in which donors perceive conflict and fragility in the Global South impacts how they spend development aid.

I welcome proposals from PhD candidates on the political economy of, securitisation of, and global governance of development and development aid.

Current Supervisions

Hiba Ben Larbi (as first supervisor) – The relationship between foreign aid and migration

Mala Mojaria (as second supervisor) – Chinese investment in Kenya

Peter Cook (as second supervisor) - Interogating the concept of populism and it's usefullness in explaining the Brexit vote

Danielle Hayter (as third supervisor) –The legitimation of French military engagement in West Africa

Jonathon Pugh (as third supervisor) - Scandinavian influence in international organisations

Teaching Responsibilities

I teach at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels principally on the themes of Political Economy, Security and International Development. I coordinates the modules Global Development (level 4) and Global Capitalism: Past, Present and Future (level 6), as well as contributing to various other modules including International Politics and Contemporary Security in International Relations.

Media Availability

I am happy to take calls and emails from media on my research, and am aware of the need to respond to journalists in a timely manner. 

Interested journalists can also contact the University's Media and Communications team for support and advice on all media engagement, including out of hours.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 1 - No Poverty
  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions


Dive into the research topics where Melita Lazell is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
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