NewsroomStudy at DITResearchIndustry and InnovationLibraryServices and FacilitiesFaculties and Schools

Dr Alan Grossman (Director)

Dr Alan Grossman (Director)

MSc Clinical Psychology (University of London)
PhD Critical and Cultural Theory (University of Wales, Cardiff

P: +353-1-4027129
Campus: Aungier Street

Alan Grossman is Director of the Centre for Transcultural Research and Media Practice, and a non-executive Director of Pivotal Arts (, which creates and curates as Counterpoints Arts in London ( He represented CTMP on the Centre-led FOMACS public media project (2007-2011) producing film, photographic, digital storytelling, radio, animation and print stories on the topic of immigration in Ireland (see online publication ‘FOMACS Retrospective - The Story So Far', He was the recipient of a two-year Government of Ireland Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Humanities and Social Sciences (2001-3) - the first award of its kind for non-fiction practice-based research at the postdoctoral level in Ireland. He has a longstanding documentary production engagement with the cultural politics of identity, migration and diasporic formations across infra and transnational contexts; from the perspective of the minority Welsh-language resistance movement in Wales, to Kurdish refugee music in Scotland in the form of a short performative documentary film Silent Song (2000, UK, 15 mins), to his co-directed ethnographic film projects Here To Stay (2006, Ireland, 72 mins) and Promise and Unrest (2010, Philippines, 79 min,, both of which received completion funding from the Irish Film Board, and combine to address questions of migrant agency, gender, long-distance motherhood, global care work and the material outcomes of remittance payments. He has published in numerous refereed journals including Space and Culture, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies and Crossings: Journal of Migration and Culture, while participating in international conferences across the fields of visual, media and cultural studies, documentary film and visual anthropology. He is co-editor with Aine O'Brien of Projecting Migration: Transcultural Documentary Practice (2007, Wallflower/Columbia University Press), a combined book/DVD-ROM engaged with questions of mobility and displacement through the analytical prism of creative practice. He has co-edited special journal issues on the cultural politics of representation in the Journal of Media Practice 9 (2), 2008, together with questions of contemporary ethnographic practice in the Irish Journal of Anthropology 16 (1), 2013.

Doctoral supervision includes ethnographic creative practice projects and written scholarship across the subject areas of migrant political agency; long-distance motherhood; the transnational family home; migrant representation in Irish cinema and radio; the globalization of healthcare education; globalisation, photography and the labouring body; return and undocumented migration; citizenship, urban space and grassroots social activism; and sport, youth and migration, amongst other areas. He has supervised numerous theses on the BA in Photography and Digital Imaging, DIT as well as MA theses in Journalism. Between 2008-11, he taught on a cross-institutional postgraduate course titled 'Transcultural Practice and Visual Culture(s), available to doctoral students in CTMP and the MPhil in Ethnic and Racial Studies, Department of Sociology, Trinity College Dublin. He was external examiner (2009-12) of the MA in Radio and Television, Centre for Media Studies, National University of Ireland, Maynooth.

Doctoral Theses Supervised to Completion:

‘Licensed to Care: The Transnational Economy of Global "Pinoy"' (Examiner: Professor Ruth Behar, University of Michigan, US).
‘Kicking the Ball: Youth, Sport and Identity in Ireland' (Examiner: Associate Professor Michael Giardina, Florida State University, US).

'Pick, Pack, Sell: Producing Horticulture in 21st Century Ireland' (Advisory Supervisor), (Examiner: Professor Charalambos Kasimis, Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development, Agricultural University of Athens).

‘A Globalised Vulnerability: Re-Representing the Labouring Body of Ireland's Newly Industrialised Landscape' (Examiner: Professor Mark Durden, University of Wales, Newport).
‘Frames and Filters: Words as Keys to the Image Archive' (Examiner: Alexander Galloway, Associate Professor, New York University).

‘Framing the Nigerian Transnational Family: New Formations in Ireland' (Examiner: Professor Les Back, Goldsmith College).
‘Broadcasting Multiculturalism: Migrant Representations and Participation in Irish Radio' (Examiner: Professor John Downing, Southern Illinois University).

'Walking on Uneven Paths: The Transcultural Experience of Migrant Children in France and Ireland' (Advisory Supervisor), (Examiner: Lucien Taylor, Associate Professor, Harvard University).

Selected Publications


Projecting Migration: Transcultural Documentary Practice (with DVD). Alan Grossman and Aine O'Brien (eds). London: Wallflower/Columbia University Press.

Journal Articles and Book Chapters

‘The Intimate Grammar of Global Care Work: Promise and Unrest', Working USA, Journal of Labor and Society, Special Issue, 'Film, Labor and Migration' (Refereed, forthcoming March).

‘Curiously Mediating the Lives of Migrants: Promise and Unrest, in Korte, B. and Regard, F. (eds) Narrating Precarious Lives, Anglistische Forschungen (English and American Studies) (Refereed, forthcoming November).

Grossman, A, Larkin, F., Stan, S. (eds) Irish Journal of Anthropology (Spring/Summer) (Refereed).

'Transnational Scenographies of Care: The Performance of Migrant Identities in Ethnographic Film', in McKeogh, C. and O'Donnell, D. (eds) Documentary in a Changing World, Cork University Press (April).

'Voice, Listening and Social Justice: A Multimediated Engagement with New Immigrant Communities and Publics in Ireland', Crossings: Journal of Migration and Culture, 2:39-58.

'FOMACS Retrospective - The Story So Far', Editorial Advisor (Online Publication with Media Content - see

Grossman, A, McLaughlin, C, O'Brien, A (guest editors), Journal of Media Practice (9.2), Intellect Books.

‘Televisualising Transnational Migration': The New Americans', in Grossman, A. and O'Brien, Á. (eds), Projecting Migration: Transcultural Documentary Practice, Wallflower/Columbia University Press.

‘Kurdish Lyrical Protest: The Terrain of Acoustic Migration’. Special Issue on Music and Migration, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 32 (2): 271-289.

'Writing the Visual: An Interview with Larry Taylor and Maeve Hickey'. Migration and Location: Visual Media Research Conference Catalogue Essay.

‘Notations: Framing the Kurdish Voice in Exile’. Two Nine Two: Essays in Visual Culture, Vol 2: 7–18.

‘The Welshification of Homely Spaces: Tracing the Uncanny’, Space and Culture (Virtual Space and Organizational Networks), No. 4/5: 223–37.

‘Stereotypes and Projective Mechanisms: Forging Links between Psyche and Culture’, in Emig, Reiner (ed.) Stereotypes in Contemporary Anglo-German Relations. Manchester: Macmillan Press, pp. 31–44.

‘On the Borderlands’, Edinburgh Review 103: ‘The End of the Nation’, pp. 55-67.

‘Nodiadau o’r Ffin’ (‘Writing Across the Line’), Tu Chwith, Vol 5: 15 -23. Trans. Gwenan M. Roberts.

'Introduction: Discourse, Selfhood and the Lifespan', in Coupland, Nikolas and Nussbaum, Jon (eds), Discourse and Lifespan Identity, Newbury Park, CA: Sage, v–xxvi.

Selected Films, Festivals and Screenings

Promise and Unrest (2010, Philippines/Ireland, 79 mins. Co-directed with Aine O'Brien, funded by the Irish Film Board):

Distributors: TWN - Third World Newsreel, New York, USA and RAI - Royal Anthropological Institute, London, UK

World Documentary Film and TV Conference, University of Falmouth, UK (September)

Aperture - 1st Asia Pacific International Ethnographic Documentary Festival, Cinematic Program, University of Melbourne, Australia (November).

Screening, ‘Migration and Well-Being: Research Frontiers' Conference, Tel Aviv University, Israel (January).

13th Festival International du Film Insulaire, Île de Groix, France (August).

International Anthropological Film Festival, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam Institute of Culture and Art Studies (November).

Capital Irish Film Festival, Solas Nua, Washington, USA (December).

30th Jean Rouch International Film Festival, Paris (November).

Athens Ethnographic Film Festival, Panorama Section (November).

Taiwan Ethnographic Film Festival, Tapei (October).

Days of Ethnographic Cinema, Russian Research Institute of the Cultural and National Heritage, Moscow, Russia (September).

31st International Nordic Anthropological Film Association (NAFA) Film Festival, University of St Andrews, Scotland (August).

Art-Kino Croatia, Rijeka. Screening of Promise and Unrest as Joint Winner of ETNOFILm3 Festival (June).

‘Motherhood, Servitude and the Delegation of Care' Conference, Birkbeck, University of London (May).

Women Make Waves, Migration Film Festival, Tapei, Taiwan (May). Joint Winner.

ETNOFILm3, Festival Etnografskog Filma, Rovinj, Croatia (April).

Belltable Arts Centre, Limerick, Ireland (February).

'Days of Ethnographic Film' Festival, Audio-visual Laboratory, Institute of Ethnology, Scientific Research Centre of Slovene Academy of Sciences and Arts, Ljubljana, Slovenia (March).

Jameson Dublin International Film Festival, Real to Reel Section, Premiere Screening, February.

11th European Association of Social Anthropology (EASA), University of Maynooth, Ireland - ‘Visual Representation of Crisis Through Ethnographic Film'(in collaboration with CAFFE (Coordination of Anthropological Film Festivals in Europe), August.

DMZ Korean Documentary Film Festival, Paju City, Korea, International Competition, September.

'People on the Move: Migration Cinema in Israel and Europe', Cinemateque, Tel Aviv, Israel, September.

Cambridge Film Festival, UK, Documentary Section, September.

16th International Film Festival ETNOFILM ČADCA, Slovakia, Main Competition, October.

San Diego Asian Film Festival, USA, Jury Competition, USA, October.

Waterford Film Festival, Ireland, November.

Here To Stay (2006, Ireland, 72 mins. Co-directed Documentary with Aine O'Brien, funded by the Irish Film Board):

Leitrim Film Festival, Ireland.

Seeing Cultures: Wellington Ethnographic Cinema, University of Victoria, New Zealand (Travelling Gottingen International Ethnographic Film Festival).

Delhi International Ethnographic Film Festival, Department of Sociology, University of Delhi, India.

Anthropological Film, Video and New Media Festival, European Association of Social Anthropologists (EASA), University of Ljublana, Slovenia.

'Bridges to Utopia' Conference, Utopian Studies Society, Ralahine Centre, University of Limerick, Ireland.

RTE Television Broadcast (Here To Stay, 52 min).

Göttingen International Ethnographic Film Festival, Germany.

World Witness Human Rights Film Festival, Limerick, Ireland.

Multicultural Broadcast Media Award (MAMA).

Green Cuts Film Festival, Berlin (Reel Ireland).

Waterford Film Festival, Ireland.

9th Cinemanila International Film Festival, Philippines.

GAZE, Dublin International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, Irish Film Institute.

Guth Gafa Documentary Film Festival, Donegal, Ireland.

‘Human Rights Nights’ (Migration and Diversity). International Film Festival, Bologna, Italy.

San Francisco Irish Film Festival, USA.

University of Ulster, Coleraine, Centre for Media Studies Research Seminar Series.

University of Limerick, Ireland, Tiger’s Eye Film Festival.

NUI Maynooth, Ireland, Department of Sociology Seminar Series.

Dublin City University (DCU), Ireland, School of Nursing.

Stranger Than Fiction Documentary Film Festival, Irish Film Institute, Dublin.

Queens University, Belfast, Department of Film Studies Seminar Series.

Silent Song (2000, UK, 15 mins, Co-directed Documentary with Aine O’Brien):

2MOVE: IRELAND Exhibition on Migratory Aesthetics, Film Screening, Silent Song, Belfast Exposed Photography and Solstice Arts Centre, Navan, Ireland.

Cinema and Migration Film Festival, University of Bergamo, Italy.

Taiwan International Ethnographic Film Festival, Tapei. ‘Stories of Migration’ Section.

Arab Mediterranean Film Festival, Edinburgh Filmhouse, UK.

UK Refugee Week, Edinburgh Filmhouse, UK.

Galway Film Fleadh, Ireland.

Stranger Than Fiction Documentary Film Festival, Irish Film Institute, Dublin.

Turkish Film Festival, London, UK.

Murphy’s Cork Film Festival, Ireland.

University of Wales, Swansea, ‘Writing Diasporas: Axial Writers, Plural Literacies, Transnational Imagination’ Conference.

The Memory Box (2007, Ireland, 6-min, Co-Producer, Documation, FOMACS production):

Culture Ireland Film Festival, Bucharest, Romania.

Galway Film Fleadh, New Irish Short Animation Section, Ireland.

Education Programme, Irish Film Institute.

World Witness Film Festival, Limerick, Ireland.

Stranger Than Fiction Documentary Film Festival, Irish Film Institute (Winner of Best Irish Short Audience Award).

Junior Galway Film Fleadh, Ireland.

Waterford African Film Festival, Ireland.

Team Spirit (2008, Ireland, 5-min, Co-Producer, Documation, FOMACS production):

ICCL 'Human Rights' screening, Cork Film Festival.

Galway Junior Film Fleadh, Ireland.

Culture Ireland Film Festival, Bucharest, Romania.

Love Music Hate Racism Launch, Dublin.

Shortlisted, ICCL Human Rights Film Competition, Ireland.

New Beginnings (2009, Ireland, 6-min, Co-Producer, Documation, FOMACS production):

Seattle Children's Film Festival, USA.

Galway Junior Film Fleadh, Ireland.

Culture Ireland Film Festival, Bucharest, Romania.

The Richness of Change (2008, Ireland, 7x1-min Shorts, Co-Producer, FOMACS production):

Broadcast on RTE (7-11 April), Intercultural Week.

Stranger Than Fiction Documentary Film Festival, Irish Film Institute, Dublin, Short Film Selection.

Living in Direct Provision - 9 Stories (9x3-5min Digital Stories, Co-producer, FOMACS Production):

Guth Gafa International Documentary Film Festival, Gortahork, Donegal, Ireland.

Selected Conference Keynotes, Papers, Seminars and Workshops

Paper, ‘Promise and Unrest: The Intimate Grammar of Global Care Work', World Documentary Film and TV Conference, University of Falmouth, UK (September).

Keynote Speaker, ‘Non-Fiction Mediations of Identity Formation Across Borders and Interdisciplinary Boundaries', Transcultural Identity Constructions in a Changing World Conference, Dalarna University, Falun, Sweden (April).

Paper, ‘Promise and Unrest: Negotiating Love Labour in the Global Care Economy', IUEAS 2013, University of Manchester, UK (August).

Paper, 'Visualising the Affective Economy of Global Care Work': Promise and Unrest', Ethnography from Margin to Centre: A Conference Celebrating Twenty Five Years of the Anthropological Association of Ireland, Royal Irish Academy (December).

Paper and Screening, 'The Intimate Grammar of Global Care Work: Promise and Unrest (2010)', Cutlural Translation and East Asia: Film, Literature, Art and Language Conference, Bangor University, Wales (September).

Keynote Speaker, ‘Narrating Precarious Lives' Symposium, Department of English, University of Freiburg, Germany (June).

Workshop Leader, ‘Visual Anthropology and Film Editing Workshop', Etnofilm4 Film Festival, Ethnographic Museum of Istria, Rovinj, Croatia (April).

Workshop Leader, 'Ethnography in Visual Arts Practice', Fire Station Artists' Studio in collaboration with FOMACS, Dublin.

Paper, ‘Promise and Unrest: The Intimate Grammar of Global Care Work', Panel, ‘Crossing and Negotiating Gender Borders: Conflicts, Displacements and Frictions in the Everyday Life of Migrant Women'. LOVA: Netherlands Association for Gender Studies and Feminist Anthropology on Ethnographies of Gender and Conflict, Holland.

Keynote Address, Media and Migration Strand, 'Narrating Migration: Documentary Film, Participatory Media and Ethnographic Film', Contemporary Photography and the Representation of African Migration Symposium and Exhibition, Bamako, Mali.

'Promise and Unrest: An Affective Economy of Global Care Work', Picturing Globalization Panel, 11th European Association of Social Anthropology (EASA) Conference, University of Maynooth, Ireland.

Invited Participant, ESF-COST Workshop on 'Cultural Migration', Dublin, National University of Ireland.

'Multi-Mediated Engagements with New Publics and Communities', Panel Convenor, Glocal Imaginaries: Writing/Migration/Place Conference, Lancaster University and Whitworth Gallery, Manchester, UK.

'Ethnographic Film and the Translocalised Expression of Migrant Sociopolitical Agency', Living Cultures: Contemporary Ethnographies of Culture Conference, Institute of Communication Studies, University of Leeds.

Co-organiser of 'Cultural Diversity, Media and the Creative Arts' Symposium, Chester Beatty Library, Dublin. Cross-Institutional Collaboration: CTMP, Goethe-Insitut, Alliance Francaise and School of Languages, DIT. Panel Chair, ‘The Cultural Politics of Representation and Diversity Programming’.

‘Situating Migrant Political Agency Through Documentary Practice: Here To Stay’, Centre on Migration Policy and Society (COMPAS), University of Oxford, UK.

Co-organiser of ‘Migration Studies in Ireland: An Interdisciplinary Postgraduate Inaugural Conference’, Cross-Institutional Collaboration, Trinity College Dublin, Ireland.

'The Political and Social Role of Documentary', Documentary Film in the 21st Century Conference, National Film School, Dun Laoghaire, Co. Dublin.

'Transculturalism', Public Lecture. Mental Health in a Changing World: The Impact of Culture and Diversity, Royal College of Psychiatrists Symposium, Dublin.

'Projecting Migration: Lens-Based Research Practice', Trinity Immigration Initiative Launch, Dublin.

'Cultural Studies and Creative Practice', Cultural Studies Now: An International Conference. Keynote speaker. University of East London, UK.

'Mediating Migration and Migrant Media Production', Mediating 'The New Ireland' Conference, Irish Media Research Network (IMRN), Dublin.

‘Projecting Migration: Transcultural Documentary Practice’, MeCCSA/AMPE Conference, Coventry University.

‘Politics and Ethics of Multisited Fieldwork’, Global City and Media Ethnography Summer School in Practice-Led Transcultural Research (in collaboration with NYU Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development), Temple Bar, DIT.

‘Photography, Moving Image and the Aesthetics of Evidence: Media-Led Practice as Research Methodology’. NYU Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development. Visual Culture and Globalization Lecture Series.

‘Reframing Migration through the Prism of Practice-Based Research’. Visible Evidence XI Documentary Conference, School of Cultural Studies, University of West England.

‘Notations: Framing the Kurdish Voice in Exile’, University of Sussex, Centre for Migration Studies, Music and Migration Workshop.

top ^