Symposium 2018


Francesca Fois

Francesca Fois is a post-doctoral researcher at Aberystwyth University, UK. Her PhD thesis explored the enactment of two spiritual intentional communities in Brazil and Italy using the concepts of utopianism and heterotopia. Since 2012, Francesca has been collaborating with Terra Mirim, an intentional community located in Brazil, and has organised a series of public events about communal living and shamanism in the UK and Italy with members of the community. 


Chris Coates

Chris Coates veteran communard and cohousing pioneer has been part of the Diggers & Dreamers ( editorial collective since it started back in the 1980's. Author of two books on the history of utopian experiments and intentional communities in the UK. After 20 years living in a small commune in East Lancs Chris now lives at Forgebank Cohousing near Lancaster and balances writing about community with continuing to build it.

Kirsten Stevens-Wood

Kirsten is Senior Lecturer at Cardiff Metropolitan University; she is also an ethnographic researcher who is currently undertaking a PhD exploring Creativity and experimentality in intentional communities. She has a Masters degree in Research Methods and is a qualified Community development and youth worker.  She manages a small woodland in South East Wales and is a keen gardener, beekeeper and completed a permaculture design course in 2013. Kirsten is also the lead for the Intentional Communities Research group and an editor for Diggers and Dreamers.

Yael Arbell

Yael Arbell is a founding member of Chapeltown Cohousing - an emerging project in Leeds - and a PhD researcher at the University of Leeds. Yael's research looks at questions of identity, subjectivity and social relations in community-led housing projects in England. She is particularly interested in routes to participation and the political significance of community-led housing.

Cath Boswell

Cath Boswell was a senior lecturer at Cardiff Met and retired at the beginning of 2017 moving to live in a community in rural mid Wales. She spent 15 years as an academic in fields of social policy in relation to housing and health and social care, specialising in social inclusion and social enterprise, but latterly in the area of intentional communities.