Centre for Multidisciplinary and Intercultural Inquiry


Dr Richard Mole

Dr Richard Mole


16 Taviton Street


  • Senior Lecturer

Joined UCL


Richard Mole's research focuses the relationship between identity and power, with particular reference to nationalism, sexualities, migration and diaspora. He has a strong theoretical interest in discourse - particularly, the post-structuralist discourse theories of Laclau and Mouffe - and a regional interest in Russia, Poland and the Baltic States and increasingly on Brazil and other Latin American societies. 

His research on the relationship between identity and power is explicitly interdisciplinary, crossing the boundaries of Sociology, International Relations, Social Psychology and Socio-Linguistics, and has found expression is his monograph The Baltic States from the Soviet Union to the European Union: Identity, Discourse and Power in the Post-Communist Transition of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, his edited volume on Discursive Constructions of Identity in European Politics and in articles and reviews published in Slavic ReviewEast European Politics and SocietiesEthnicity and Health, Nations and Nationalism, European Journal of Social Psychology, Slavonic and East European Review, Sexualities, Journal of Baltic Studies and Sexually Transmitted Infections

His current research examines the intersections between migration and sexuality. He first explored this relationship as part of a large-scale collaborative project on the Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles of London’s East Europeans between SSEES and the UCL Centre for Sexual Health and HIV Research. The project, which received funding of £400,000 from the UK Medical Research Council, comprised a survey of over 2,500 East European migrants and 50 in-depth interviews and provided invaluable insights into the sexual behaviour and attitudes of these new communities. 

Building on the insights into the experiences of LGBT migrants gained from the above project, he is currently completing a project on Polish, Russian and Brazilian LGBT Migrants in London and Berlin, which seeks to explore the extent to which LGBT migrants engage with their ethno-national diasporas in a bid to gain social, economic and psychological support and, if this is lacking, whether LGBT migrants develop quasi-diasporic networks of their own. He completed the first year of the project as a Visiting Fellow at Humboldt University in Berlin, followed by three months at the Free University of Berlin, both funded by an Alexander von Humboldt Fellowship for Experienced Researchers.

Award year Qualification Institution
2003 PhD
Doctor of Philosophy
International Relations
London School of Economics and Political Science
1992 M.Phil
Master of Philosophy
International Relations
University of Cambridge
1991 BA Hons
Bachelor of Arts (Honours)
German and Russian
Heriot-Watt University
03-05 CLTHE_1
Certificate in Learning and Teaching in HE Part 1
Academic studies in Higher Education
University College London
03-05 CLTHE_2
Certificate in Learning and Teaching in HE Part 2
Academic studies in Higher Education
University College London

Richard studied German and Russian at Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, and International Relations at the University of Cambridge, where he also worked at the University's Baltic States Research Unit. After four years working for Credit Suisse in London and Zurich, he began his doctoral studies in 1997 at the London School of Economics and Political Science. His PhD thesis examined the relationship between identity and foreign policy in Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. After completing his PhD, he was a Fellow at the University of Pennsylvania's Solomon Asch Center for the Study of Ethnopolitical Conflict, before taking up a two-year Andrew W. Mellon Research Fellowship at UCL. He joined SSEES in 2004 as Lecturer in the Politics of Central Europe and was promoted to Senior Lecturer in Political Sociology in 2010. From 2011-16 he was the Societies' Pathway Representative for the BASc Arts and Sciences.

He is External Examiner for the undergraduate programme in Central and East European Studies at the University of Glasgow and for the postgraduate programmes in Russian and East European Studies at the University of Oxford. Together with his colleague, Christopher Gerry, he set up the International MA in Economy, State and Society (IMESS), which was recognised by the EU Erasmus Mundus Programme in 2006, making UCL the first Russell Group university to have received such recognition. Students spend the first year at UCL SSEES and the second at one of our partners in Central and Eastern Europe: Belgrade University; Charles University in Prague; Corvinus University of Budapest; Helsinki University; Higher School of Economics, Moscow/St Petersburg; Jagiellonian University in Krakow, or Tartu University. He was IMESS Programme Director from 2009-11 and is currently IMESS Director.
In 2007 he was made a Fellow of the UK Higher Education Academy and in 2009 he was awarded a Provost's Teaching Award for excellence in teaching.

Office Hours

Tuesdays 10am –12pm