Sarita Malik**


Sarita Malik 10A_opt.jpg

I am interested in questions of social change, inequality, communities, and cultural representation. I have published widely on representations of ‘race’, public service broadcasting, diversity and media policy. Since 2014, I have been the Director of Research for the Department of Social Sciences, Media and Communications.

I completed my AHRB Collaborative Doctoral PhD Studentship in 1998. My doctoral research examined the history of Black and Asian representation on British television. I was based at the British Film Institute in London and supervised by Professor Stuart Hall. I went on to work for a range of arts and media organisations including a London arts venue where I was Head of Asian Arts. I joined Brunel as a research bid writer and then went on to work as a Research Fellow on an ESRC project examining public understandings of regulation (with Professors Peter Lunt and Sonia Livingstone). I have been a regular contributor to the The Guardian’s Comment is Free and written for a range of print and web publications on research-related issues, including the Guardian, The Conversation, Catalyst, Arts Professional, Sight and Sound and screenonline. Media appearances have included Channel 4, the BBC, Sky Television.


  • PhD Sociology (Open University)
  • Professional Development in Academic Practice (Brunel)
  • MA Film and Television (University of Warwick)
  • BA English and Media Studies (Sussex University)

Research area(s)

  • Race and representation
  • Communities and Creative Practice
  • Diversity and Public Service Broadcasting
  • Media policy and institutions
  • Diasporic media

Membership and affiliation

  • Fellow, Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA)
  • Fellow, Higher Education Academy (HEA)
  • External Peer Reviewer, ESRC, AHRC
  • Curatorial Advisory Board Member, Unlocking Film Heritage, British Film Institute
  • External Expert Panel, COST Domain of Individuals, Societies, Cultures and Health (ISCH), European Cooperation in Science and Technology (COST)
  • Member of Nomination Network, European Cultural Foundation Princess Margriet Award (2014)
  • International Advisory Board, darkmatter journal
  • Editorial Board, South Asian Popular Culture
  • Editorial Board, Journal of British Cinema and Television


Research interests

Sarita Malik’s research examines the politics of media communication, representation and institutional frameworks within the contexts of media history, cultural policy and social change. Her research contributes to contemporary debates about race, identity, belonging and the role of culture. She has led several projects that are oriented towards societal impact, public engagement and working collaboratively with external stakeholders, ranging from local, grassroots organisations to large, flagship cultural organisations.

Recent externally funded research has included a study in collaboration with the British Film Institute on Diasporic film, and a multi-partner project on community filmmaking and cultural diversity. Sarita is currently the Principal Investigator on a large, international consortia project funded by the UK government’s Arts and Humanities Research Council examining how disenfranchised communities use the arts, media and creativity to challenge marginalisation in mainland UK, Northern Ireland, Palestine and India.

Sarita supports the British Film Institute develop its diversity policies through related research and is a member of the BFI’s ‘Unlocking Film Heritage’ Curatorial Advisory Panel. She has served as an external expert peer reviewer for COST, the ESRC and AHRC.

Research project(s) and grant(s)

Arts & Humanities Research Council (Connected Communities Large Consortia Grant)
Creative Interruptions: grassroots culture, state structures and disconnection as a space for 'radical openness'

October 2016-September 2019
Sarita Malik (PI)


Arts & Humanities Research Council (Connected Communities ‘Disconnection’ Research Development Funding grant)
Creative Interruptions: grassroots culture, state structures and disconnection as a space for 'radical openness'
October 2014-April 2015
Sarita Malik (PI)

RSDO Research Development Funding grant (Brunel University)
Creative Interruptions: grassroots culture, state structures and disconnection as a space for 'radical openness'
June 2014-July 2014
Sarita Malik (PI)

Arts & Humanities Research Council (Connected Communities follow-on grant)
Community Filmmaking and Cultural Diversity: practice, innovation and policy
February 2013 - February 2014
Sarita Malik (PI)
In partnership with the British Film Institute, London

Arts & Humanities Research Council (Connected Communities grant)
Diasporic Film in Communities: A scoping study of the relationship between screen culture, stakeholders and communities
February 2012 - October 2012
Sarita Malik (PI)
In partnership with the British Film Institute, London

Brunel Research Initiative & Incentive Fund (Brunel University)
Evolving understandings of communities: Connecting research, stakeholders and communities
November 2012 – July 2014
Sarita Malik (PI)

British Academy
Overseas Conference Grant: Society for Cinema and Media Studies Conference, New Orleans, Louisiana
Sarita Malik (PI)



Undergraduate Teaching

Module convenor

  • Introduction to Media (Yr1)
  • Media Genres and Society (Yr 2)

Module contributor

  • Individual and Social Processes (Yr1)
  • Introduction to Social Enquiry (Yr 1)
  • Sociology and Communications Dissertation (Yr 3)
  • Work Placements (Yrs 1 and 2)

    Postgraduate Teaching

    Module contributor

    • Media and Globalisation
    • Media and Communications Dissertation 


    • Director of Research, Department of Social Sciences, Media and Communications
    • Senior Tutor (Sociology/Communications)
    • Mitigating Circumstances Officer
    • Erasmus co-ordinator

      Research supervision

      Nessa Adams: Developing cultural diversity communication strategies: Exploring the ‘organisational habitus’ of advertising practitioners in the UK and US; 2010-2016

      Erminia Passannanti: Cinematic representation of the sacred and censorship by religion in post-Catholic Italy (1960/1980); 2009 - 2012

      Selected Publications

      Journal articles

      Malik, S. , Chapain, C.  and Comunian, R.   (Accepted)   'Rethinking Cultural Diversity in the UK Film Sector: Practices in Community Filmmaking'. OrganizationDownload publication 

      Malik, S.  and Nwonka, C.   (Accepted)   'Top Boy: Cultural Verisimilitude and the Allure of Black Criminality on UK Public Service Broadcasting Drama'. Journal of British Cinema and TelevisionDownload publication 

      Malik, S.   (2013)   '"Creative diversity": UK public service broadcasting after multiculturalism'. Popular Communication: The International Journal of Media and Culture, 11 (3).  pp. 227 - 241. doi: 10.1080/15405702.2013.810081 Download publication 

      Malik, S.   (2013)   'Locating the ‘radical’ in Shoot the Messenger'. Journal of British Cinema and Television, 10 (1).  pp. 187 - 205. doi: 10.3366/jbctv.2013.0129 Download publication 

      Malik, S.   (2013)   'The Indian family on UK reality television: Convivial culture in salient contexts'. Television and New Media, 14 (6).  pp. 510 - 528. doi: 10.1177/1527476412446324 Download publication 

      Malik, S.   (2010)   'From multicultural programming to diasporic television: situating the UK in a European context'. Media History, 16 (1).  pp. 123 - 128. doi: 10.1080/13688800903395577 

      Malik, S.   (2009)   'Reflecting on 'classic television'; in debate: making and remaking television classics'. Critical Studies in Television, 4 (2).  pp. 113 - 114. 

      Malik, S.   (2009)   'Doing multicultural London: The case of 'King of the Ghetto''. Journal of British Cinema and Television, 6 (2).  pp. 232 - 248. doi: 10.3366/E1743452109000909 

      Malik, S.   (2009)   'Introduction to the cinema issue'. South Asian Popular Culture, 7 (1).  pp. 1 - 5. doi: 10.1080/14746680802704931 

      Malik, S.   (2009)   'Filmmaker Asif Kapadia, interviewed by Sarita Malik'. South Asian Popular Culture, 7 (1).  pp. 73 - 84. doi: 10.1080/14746680802705037 

      Malik, S.   (2008)   ''Keeping it real': the politics of Channel 4's multiculturalism, mainstreaming and mandates'. Screen, 49 (3).  pp. 343 - 353. doi: 10.1093/screen/hjn041 Download publication 

      Malik, S.   (2007)   'Conference report: The industrial context of migrant and diasporic cinema in Europe 12th-13th January 2007, Institute of Germanic and Romance Studies, London'. Journal of Media Practice, 8 (2).  pp. 239 - 241. doi: 10.1386/jmpr.8.2.239/4 

      Malik, S.   (2002)   'Money, Macpherson and mind-set: The competing cultural and commercial demands on black and Asian British films in the 1990s'. Journal of Popular British Cinema, 5 pp. 90 - 103. 


      Malik, S.   (2002) Representing black Britain: Black and Asian images on Television.  Sage Publications Ltd 

      Book chapters

      Malik, S.  (2015)   'The Rise Of 'Creative Diversity' In Media Policy', in Thorsen, E. (ed.) Media, Margins and Civic Agency.  Palgrave Macmillan pp. 89 - 101. 

      Malik, S.  (2014)   'What the ‘Go Home’ campaign tells us about the British media’', in Remixing Europe: the Migrant Perspective..  

      Malik, S.  (2014)   'Diversity, Broadcasting and the Politics of Representation', in Titley, G. (ed.) National Conversations Public Service Media and Cultural Diversity in Europe.  Intellect pp. 21 - 41. 

      Malik, S.  (2011)   'Mainstreaming cultural diversity: Public service policy and British reality television', in Brunt, R.  and Cere, R. (eds.) Postcolonial media culture in Britain.  Palgrave Macmillan pp. 41 - 55. 

      Malik, S.  (2010)   'The dark side of hybridity: Contemporary black and Asian British cinema', in Berghahn, D.  and Sternberg, C. (eds.) European Cinema in Motion: Migrant and Diasporic Film in Contemporary Europe.  Palgrave Macmillan Limited pp. 132 - 151. 

      Malik, S.  (2010)   'How Little Britain does ‘race’', in Lockyer, S. (ed.) Reading Little Britain:Comedy Matters on Contemporary Television.  London IB Tauris Publishers pp. 75 - 94. 

      Malik, S.  (2009)   'Race and ethnicity', in Albertazzi, D.  and Cobley, P. (eds.) The Media: An Introduction.  Pearson pp. 444 - 456. 

      Malik, S.  (2004)   'Racial coding', in Cashmore, E. (ed.) Encyclopaedia of race and ethnic studies.  London: Routledge pp. 341 - 345. 

      Malik, S.  (2002)   'The construction of black and Asian ethnicities in British film and television', in Briggs, A.  and Cobley, P. (eds.) The media: an introduction.  Harlow: Longman pp. 357 - 368. 

      Malik, S.  (1996)   '‘Beyond “The Cinema of Duty”? The Pleasures of Hybridity: Black British Film of the 1980s and 1990s’', in Higson, A. (ed.) Dissolving Views: Key Writings on British Cinema.  Cassell pp. 202 - 215. 

      Page last updated: Wednesday 19 October 2016