Academic Profile

Maaret is a visiting fellow (funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation SNSF) at the School of Geography and the Environment. She has a MA from the Humboldt University of Berlin and the University of Potsdam (Germany) and a PhD from the University of Bern (Switzerland).

Prior to her fellowship in Oxford, Maaret was a teaching assistant (2014-2018) and lecturer (2018-2020) in social and cultural geography at the University of Bern. In 2014-2018, she was project coordinator and research fellow in the SNSF project titled Safeguarding democracy: Contests of values and interests, which looked at (women's) human rights discourses in South Africa, Switzerland and Honduras. Maaret was a visiting fellow at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg (South Africa) in 2015. She has conducted fieldwork in Honduras, South Africa and Italy. During 2008-2013, Maaret worked in women's rights organisations in Honduras and in Switzerland and her research is heavily inspired by activist scholarship and participatory approaches.

Current Research

Maaret is interested in people's embodied experiences and practices related to environmental pollution, violence and exclusion. Her research combines health geographies, environmental justice scholarship, political ecologies and feminist theories.

Her current research project explores how residents in Taranto (Southern Italy), a city located by one of the largest steel plants in Europe, experience and respond to environmental pollution. In a forthcoming paper, she combines work on futures in (post-) industrial cities with scholarship on the lived experiences of people in polluted environments, and looks at the future-making practices of young people in Taranto. In addition to young people's experiences, Maaret is interested in questions of gender and the ways women in Taranto make sense of pollution in relation to their reproductive health; beyond bodily toxicity.

In another ongoing project, Maaret looks at spaces of diversity and their barriers in geography and the ways that diversity is experienced and practiced through teaching in higher education in Switzerland.

Maaret is interested in participatory research methods and uses e.g. body mapping in her research.


Journal Articles

Book Chapters

  • Jokela-Pansini, M. (in press) Body mapping as a feminist visual method: Exploring the field through the body. In: Raphaela Kogler and Jeannine Wintzer (eds.) Raum und Bild. Strategien visueller raumbezogener Forschung. Heidelberg: Springer.


  • Siegl, V. and Jokela-Pansini, M. (2017) On Love and Courage. Interview with feminist scholar and activist Margo Okazawa-Rey. Genderstudies, 30: 4-7. Interdisciplinary Centre for Gender Studies, University of Bern.