Dr Raina’s research explores linkages between conflict, poverty, unemployment and culture and development. It examines the relevance of culturally significant practices to the reconstruction of conflict zones. This research allows for connections to be made between creative home-based workers who are largely seen as peripheral to development economics, and on the fringes of formal employment and contributors to GDP; to the larger notions of peace building, poverty spirals and conflict theory through culturally significant, socially relevant practices. Her research examines how economic empowerment and socio-economic rights of women could be promoted and protected through training interventions – allowing them to be stakeholders in the reconstruction of their communities. Dr Raina's research connects arts and humanities and the social sciences. The regional focus of this work is Kashmir (India and Pakistan).
Dr Raina’s current AHRC-ESRC project looks at the material social practices through which women in Northern Pakistan reproduce themselves on a daily and generational basis and through which the social relations and material bases of capitalism are renewed to understand both the costs of conflict and the connections between vastly different sites of production. Focusing on processes of social reproduction (Kofman and Raghuram 2015) allows the project to address questions of the making, maintenance, and exploitation of a fluidly differentiated labor force, the productions (and destructions) of nature, and the means to create alternative geographies (Katz, 2002).