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Personal profile

Academic Biography

Dr. Christopher Massey researches in modern British history and politics and has worked at Teesside University since 2015.

His recent publications include the official biography of Lord Tom Sawyer, The Man at the Back in 2017, and a monograph published by Manchester University Press in 2020 entitled The Modernisation of the Labour Party, 1979-97.

Christopher's doctoral thesis explored the 1945-51 Labour Governments’ attitude to steel nationalisation, whilst other research outputs have included articles on the Keir Starmer, the Militant Tendency, Labour Party Conference, and nationalisation, alongside the curation of an exhibition in 2017 at the Middlesbrough Institute for Modern Art on the Life of Lord Tom Sawyer. 

Dr. Massey has undertaken a wide variety of media engagements including expert comment for the BBC and Al Jazeera, party political content for ITV news and the Teesside Gazette, and written content for the Conversation, Fabian Review, LSE, and Northern Echo. 

Learning and Teaching Interests and Activities

As a Senior Lecturer in History and Politics, Christopher teaches across the BA History and BA Politics degrees. His teaching interests include modern British, American and European history and politics.

He is the Course Leader for BA Politics and serves as the module leader for ‘Introduction to Politics’, ‘America from Watergate to Trump’, 'Contemporary Political Issues', and 'Propaganda and Political Communications' on this degree. He also serves as the module leader for 'War, Revolution, Union: Europe 1914-2017', 'Britain: From the Boer War to Brexit' and ‘Labour Pains: The Labour Party: 1945-2017’ on the BA History course.

Research Projects & External Funding

Christopher works as a co-investigator on the ERASMUS+ funded project 'Generation Brexit', alongside Sean Murphy. Across two years 2020-22, this project investigates the impact of Brexit on young people between the ages of 14 and 26 in the Tees Valley.

PhD and Research Opportunities

Dr. Massey would be interested to receive enquiries for doctoral study in the areas of modern British history and politics, particularly - but not limited to - the history of the Labour Party and trade unions. 

He serves as the Director of Studies for a doctorate on 'The Fall of the Red Wall: The Labour Party’s decline in the Tees Valley' and as a second supervisor for a doctorate on the development and decline of UKIP.

External Roles and Professional Activities

Outside of academia Christopher has extensive experience in local government. He has been an elected councillor since 2011 and was the Deputy Leader of Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council between 2017 and 2019, alongside serving as a Cabinet Member between 2012 and 2019. 

Dr. Massey was also elected to the North York Moors National Park Authority between 2013 and 2019 and has worked for the Local Government Association at a national level on their Resources Board.

Christopher retains an interest in education as a recent PGCLTHE graduate and Fellow of the Higher Education Authority, alongside his experiences as a former secondary school trainee teacher and school governor.

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