Personal profile

Personal profile

Roberta is Professor of Performance and Executive Dean of the School of Performing and Digital Arts at Royal Holloway University of London. Most recently, she was the Principal Investigator for the Transitioning to Sustainable Production across the UK Theatre Sector project (co-commissioned by the Creative Industries Policy and Evidence Centre and Arts Council England, 2022). In addition to a commitment to exploring and celebrating "green" theatre practices, her research – which takes the form of both performance and writing – tends to focus on sex-gender and bodies, with a specific interest in live art and stand up comedy by Jewish women. She is the author or editor of six books, and was the elected Chair of the Theatre & Performance Research Association (TaPRA) between 2018 and 2022.

Championing and celebrating embodied knowledge at all stages of a research career, Roberta has written and spoken about and led workshops across the UK, in Canada and in Europe on practice-research methodologies. She was the founding co-Director of the AHRC-funded 3D3 Centre for Doctoral Training (a partnership between the Universities of Plymouth, Falmouth and West of England Bristol), which supported only practice-led research projects in digital art, design, culture and performance. She has supervised over 25 PhDs and research masters to successful completion, many of which have been located at the disciplinary boundaries of performance.

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 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 9 - Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action

Education/Academic qualification

Drama, PhD, Performing the Jewess, University of Exeter

Award Date: 1 Sept 2002

Teaching & Learning in HE, PGCert, Plymouth University

Award Date: 1 Sept 1995

Theatre Studies, MA, Lighting design / New circus, University of Leeds

Award Date: 7 Jul 1992

French Drama, BA (Hons), University of East London

Award Date: 1 Sept 1990

External positions

Charity Trustee, Strode's Foundation

Oct 2023 → …

Chair of Arts Panel, FCT - Fundação para a Ciência e Tecnologia, Portugal

1 May 20231 Apr 2024

Research Advisory Board Member, University of the Arts Helsinki, Finland

1 Mar 202331 Dec 2027

Advisory Group Member, Generation Delta

1 Oct 2022 → …

Visiting Professor, University of Plymouth, UK

1 Mar 20221 Mar 2024

Advisory Board Member, Live Art Ireland

1 Dec 202026 Jun 2024

Chair, Executive Committee, Theatre and Performance Research Association

7 Sept 201814 Sept 2022

Talent Peer Review College Member, UK Research and Innovation (UKRI)

1 Sept 2018 → …


  • Performance & live arts
  • Practice-research
  • Theatre
  • Gender-sex
  • Jewish cultural studies
  • Sustainability

Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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