Dr Ania Plomien

Dr Ania Plomien

Assistant Professor in Gender and Social Science

Department for Gender Studies

+44 (0)20 7955 7771
Room No

About me

My core research interest is changing inequalities in relation to production and social reproduction from a feminist political economy perspective. Committed to progressive social change, I am concerned with understanding the production and reproduction of gender inequalities through social processes and social and economic policies occurring at national and transnational levels, with a view to providing insights on how they might be effectively addressed. This entails combining conceptual and empirical work through independent and collaborative research projects.  

Consequently, my work contributes to three distinct, but interrelated, strands of scholarship centred on gender inequality and policy in Central and Eastern Europe (especially Poland) and in the European Union, with particular attention to labour markets, work and employment, and reconciliation of work and care. Specifically, the research is on (a) social, political, and economic transition in the CEE region; (b) social and economic policy developments at national and supra-national levels, especially within the EU context; and (c) interactions between micro-level / interpersonal preferences and practices and macro- level organisation / institutional  policies and cultures. 

These research interests translate into a number of external professional activities and engagment with civil society and policy makers. Among others, I am a member of the Policy Advisory Group of the Women’s Budget Group, I have served as an editorial board member of Work, Employment, and Society (2012-2016), and have been a core expert of the European Network of Experts on Gender Equality (2005-2014). 

Expertise Details

gender; inequalities; feminist political economy; production; social reproduction; work; employment; labour market policy; social policy; economic policy; post-socialism; Central Eastern Europe; EU; Europeanisation


Brexit and the crisis of the European Social Model? (current)

The UK Referendum debates, just like EU policies, have emphasised the economic consequences of Brexit, and less so its potential social impact, even though the economic and the social are so tightly bound. In this research I trace the recent changes in the European Social Model from a gender perspective, drawing on economic and social aspects of policy developments and focusing on the post-2008 responses to the multiple crises unfolding across the EU.  Above all I ask: Have gender equality objectives, and social policy more generally, been left behind?

Gender Analysis of Labour Market Outcomes in the CEE region: Poland, Romania and Russia (2013-14)

This study (together with Monika Potoczna) used micro data from labour force and household surveys to explore differences in labour market outcomes by sex, age, marital/parental status, and other relevant stratifiers.  It aimed to gain a nuanced picture of changes in women’s and men’s labour force participation and its quality over time. The background paper from the study  ‘Gender analysis of labour market outcomes in Poland, Romania and Russia in the 2000s’ (2014)contributed to the UN Women  Report ‘Progress of the Worlds Women 2015-2016: Transforming economies, realising rights’ (launched in April 2015).

Gender Equality and Gender Mainstreaming in Employment and Social Policies (2005-2014)

Since 2005 I have been involved in an annual programme of policy research and analysis for first the Employment and Social Affairs Directorate and subsequently for the Directorate General Justice of the European Commission as the National Expert for Poland in the European Network of Experts on Gender Equality (formerly EGGE and EGGSIE). This research centres on a critical assessment of national policies and the extent to which they promote gender equality in the employment and social spheres, and contributes to policy-making processes through commenting on and interacting with national and EU-level policy makers, including exchange of best practice seminars and reports for the European Commission, the Parliament, and other stakeholders.

Private Bank: Workplace Culture and Gender Balance (2010-2011)

This research (with Diane Perrons) conducted at a private bank investigated the factors inhibiting the development of a more gender balanced workforce overall, but in particular in senior positions, in an organisation explicitly interested in raising the proportion of women in senior positions.       

Socio-Economic Inequalities and Policy in the EU (2010)

This research (with Diane Perrons) was conducted in light of increasing research that since the mid-1970s socio-economic inequalities have increased across many countries, including in Europe. It was based on an extensive review of 13 research projects financed by DG Research under Framework Programme 6 that investigated the processes underpinning inequality, poverty and exclusion and the extent to which strategies put in place to promote social cohesion and inclusion are effective. 

The main findings have been published in the report: ‘Why socio-economic inequalities increase? Facts and policy responses in Europe’ (2010) Available here: http://ec.europa.eu/research/social-sciences/pdf/policy-review-inequalities_en.pdf

Situating men within global care chains: the migrant handyman phenomenon (ESRC 2008-9) 

Together with Majella Kilkey (Principal Investigator) and Diane Perrons, we explored situations in which households outsource traditionally male chores, such as household and garden maintenance and repairs. Based on quantitative and qualitative research, the study obtained and analysed new information on the characteristics of employment of migrant handymen in the UK; on how the use of migrant handymen affects employing households' work, family and leisure practices; on migrant handymen's work and family biographies, and their experiences of being a migrant. 

This research has been published in a number of articles and a book: 

Kilkey,M., Perrons, D. and Plomien, A. with P. Hondagneu-Sotelo and H. Ramirez (2013) Gender, Migration and Domestic Work: Masculinities, Male Labour and Fathering in the UK and USA, Palgrave Macmillan: Houndmills Basingstoke. 


The SAGE Handbook of Feminist Theory (eds) Mary Evans, Clare Hemmings, Marsha Henry, Hazel Johnstone, Sumi Madhok, Ania Plomien and Sadie Wearing (2014)

At no point in recorded history has there been an absence of intense, and heated, discussion about the subject of how to conduct relations between women and men. This Handbook provides a comprehensive guide to these omnipresent issues and debates, mapping the present and future of thinking about feminist theory. The chapters gathered here present the state of the art in scholarship in the field, covering: epistemology and marginality; literary, visual and cultural representations; sexuality; macro and microeconomics of gender; conflict and peace. It is an essential reference work for advanced students and academics not only of feminist theory, but of gender and sexuality across the humanities and social sciences.

It is an essential reference work for advanced students and academics not only of feminist theory, but of gender and sexuality across the humanities and social sciences.

Gender, Migration and Domestic Work: Masculinities, Male Labour & Fathering in the UK and USA by Majella Kilkey, Diane Perrons and Ania Plomien (2013) 

As the rich have got richer and households have become busier, demand for commoditized household services has increased. While much is known about maids and nannies, this book is distinctive in focusing on masculinized domestic services.

Gender and the Labour Market in Poland: Domestic Barriers to Europeanisation by Ania Plomien (2010)

Two decades have passed since the beginning of Central East European (CEE) countries' transition from socialism and half a decade since they joined the European Union (EU). Focusing on Poland, this book engages in a gender analysis of the impact of these two exogenous events on labour market policies. 

Articles in referred journals

Kilkey, M., Plomien, A., and Perrons, D. (2014) 'Migrant men's fathering narratives, practices and projects in national and transnational spaces: recent Polish male migrants to London', International Migration, 52 (1): 178-191. 

Perrons, D., Plomien, A. and Kilkey, M. (2010) ‘Migration and uneven development within an enlarged European Union: Fathering, gender divisions and male migrant domestic services’, European Urban and Regional Studies 17 (2): 197-215.

Plomien, A. (2009) ‘Welfare state, gender, and reconciliation of work and family in Poland: policy developments and practice in a new EU member’, Social Policy and Administration,  43, (2): 136–151. 

Lewis, J. and Plomien, A. (2009) ‘Flexicurity’ as a Policy Strategy: the Implications for Gender Equality’, Economy and Society, 38 (3) 433-459. 

Book chapters

Plomien, A. (2014) ‘Introduction’ to the section ‘Economy ’ in The SAGE Handbook of Feminist Theory. London: Sage.

Himmelweit, S. and Plomien, A. (2014) ‘Feminist Perspectives on Care: Theory Practice and Policy‘, in The SAGE Handbook of Feminist Theory, London: Sage. 

Perrons, D. and Plomien, A. (2013) ‘Gender, Inequality and the Crisis: towards more sustainable development’, in Karamessini, M. and Rubery, J. (eds) Women and Austerity. The Economic Crisis and the Future for Gender Equality Routledge: Abingdon. 

Plomien, A. (2006) ‘From Socialism to Capitalism: Women and their Changed Relationship with the Labor Market in Poland’ in Blossfeld, H.-P. and Hofmeister, H. (eds) Globalization, Uncertainty, and Women’s Careers: An International Comparison, Cheltenham, UK and Northampton, MA, USA: Edward Elgar.

Other: blogs, media, working papers

Perrons, Diane and Lacey, Nicola and Phillips, Anne and Wearing, Sadie and Ashtiany, Saphieh and Biressi, Anita and Carter, Cynthia and Chakrabarti, Shami and Chinkin, Christine and Couldry, Nick and Criado-Perez, Caroline and DeLargy, Pamela and Dobbs, Linda and Harris, Scarlett and Himmelweit, Susan and Jenkins, Kate and Kabeer, Naila and Lovenduski, Joni and Manning, Alan and Murray, Rainbow and Negra, Diane and Neitzert, Eva and Orgad, Shani and Plomien, Ania and Sen, Purna and Spicer, Harriet and Starmer, Keir (2016) Confronting gender inequality: findings from the LSE commission on gender, inequality and power, London School of Economics and Political Science, Gender Institute, London, UK.

Plomien, A. (2016) ‘The EU and gender equality: Better off in, or out? Questions of inequality, gender and im/migration’ Engenderings, Gender Institute, LSE blog.  

Plomien A. (2015) ‘Reflections on work-life balance’, podcast on the cross cutting theme in the Gender, Inequality and Power Commission, Gender Institute, LSE. 

Perrons, D. and Plomien, A. (2014) ‘Managing the gender divide’, Financial Times Adviser, 27.03.2014. 

Plomien, A. and Perrons, D. (2013) ‘Gendering the Euro Crisis’, Eurocrisis in the Press Blog, LSE

Plomien, A. (2012) Europe faced with unemployment, Programme ’90 Minutes’, Interview TVN / CNBC, Available here

Plomien, A. (2012) ‘With more than 5 million more Europeans now unemployed due to the crisis, the EU’s approaches to tackling unemployment are treating the symptoms, not the causes.’ European Politics and Policy Blog, LSE

Plomien, A. (2012) ‘While the EU remains committed to gender equality, the reality still falls far short of policy-makers’ goals’. European Politics and Policy Blog, LSE 

Lewis, J. and Plomien, A. (2007) ‘Work/family reconciliation, equal opportunities, and social policies: the interpretation of policy trajectories at the EU level and the meaning of gender equality’, Work Package 3 working paper for WORKCARE project

Commissioned research and reports (Since 2010)

(2014) ‘Gender analysis of labour market outcomes in Poland, Romania and Russia in the 2000s’. Background paper for UN Women ‘Progress of the Worlds Women 2015-2016: Transforming economies, realising rights’ (launched in April 2015) (with M. Potoczna)

(2014) Poland Country Study on Reconciliation of Work and Family Life, contribution to an OSB project for the European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE).

(2014) Polish case study on developments and current priorities in the field of gender equality: mapping and evaluating national strategies. EC

(2013) ‘Building supportive infrastructure for gender equality in Poland’ (European Commission)

(2013) ‘Gender Pay Gap in Poland: Analysis, Debate, and Policy’. Exchange of good practice on gender equality: Equal Pay Days. Tallinn, 18-19 June 2013. Available here

(2012) ‘The Gender Perspective in the National Reform Programme for Employment in Poland’ (European Commission)

(2011) ‘Implementation of gender mainstreaming: comments paper on Poland’, Exchange of good practice on gender equality: Gender Mainstreaming, Brussels, 17-18 May, 2011. Available here

(2011) Gender Aspects of the Economic Downturn and Financial Crisis in Poland.  Report contributing to the study “Gender aspects of the economic turndown and the financial crisis”, (European Parliament) Available here

(2011) ‘The Gender Perspective in the National Reform Programme for Employment in Poland’ (European Commission) 

(2010) with Diane Perrons ‘Why socio-economic inequalities increase? Facts and policy responses in Europe’. Luxembourg: Publications Office of the EU. Available here

(2010) ‘The Gender Perspective in the National Reform Programme for Employment in Poland’ (European Commission)

(2010) ‘Elderly care in Poland: provisions and providers’ (European Commission)

(2010) ‘Lifelong learning and new skills in Poland: a gender perspective’ (European Commission) 

Teaching and administration

PhD supervision

I am interested in supervising PhD research in feminist political economy, especially on topics related to production and social reproduction and to contemporary inequalities, such as:

  • gender division of paid and unpaid labour
  • changing nature and conditions of work and employment
  • migration and mobility
  • social and economic policies (family, care, labour market, austerity, marketisation, Brexit)

In particular, I welcome applications focusing on Central and Eastern European countries and on the European Union level.

My PhD related activites include

Teaching and administration:  


  • Magdalena Mikulak: Reparative Therapy in Poland (Supervisor, with C. Hemmings as Advisor)
  • Aura Lehtonen: Reimagining Sexual Politics: Sexual Governance in Austerity Britain (Advisor, with C. Hemmings as Supervisor)
  • Aiko Holvikivi: Gender Training in the Military (Advisor, with M. Henry as Supervisor)
  • Hannah Wright: Gendered organisational cultures and discourses in foreign policy-making institutions Gender Training in the Military (Advisor, with M. Henry as Supervisor)
  • Yang Shen: Female migrant workers in China (Advisor,with D. Perrons as Supervisor, completed)
  • Harriet Gray: Intimate partner abuse in military families (Advisor, with M. Henry as Supervisor, completed)

Examining: Internal and External