Tiffany Willoughby-Herard

Research expertise: South Africa, poor whites, race in foreign policy, diaspora, comparative racial politics, black political thought, third world feminisms, feminist pedagogy, decolonizing theory, comparative political theory, community and civic engagement, radical thought

Tiffany Willoughby-Herard is a new associate professor in the Department of Global and International Studies, but not a new face to the UCI campus. For the past 16 years, she’s been a faculty member in the Department of African American Studies in the School of Humanities. With her move to global studies in the School of Social Sciences, she’s excited to collaborate and grow with the department’s many young scholars who focus on the Global South.

As a humanistic social scientist and comparative political theorist, Willoughby-Herard’s interests span multiple disciplines including African studies, international and global studies, feminism, political science, and humanities. As such, her research has been published in journals as diverse as Theory and Event; Politics, Groups, and Identities; African Identities; PS: Political Science and Politics; Palimpsest: A Journal on Women, Gender, and the Black International; and others. Bringing together approaches from both the humanities and social sciences, she investigates the function of race and enslavement in national identity which has important implications for theories of citizenship, immigration, democracy, and justice.



Her current work focuses on youth led politics in South Africa and the role of scholar activists. She’s pursuing historical research on Fatima Meer, a sociologist who was among the founders of the Federation of Black South African Women and the founder of the Institute for Black Research at the University of KwaZulu Natal, and another project on Motsoko Pheko of the Pan African Congress of Azania. She’s the author or coauthor of three books, and her research has been supported by multiple organizations including the Mellon Foundation, Institute for Community and Civic Engagement, National Humanities Center (USA), the University of South Africa Institute for Gender Studies, the UC Humanities Research Institute, the UC President's Postdoctoral Fellowship, and others.

In 2022, she was recognized with the Academic Senate Distinguished Faculty Award for Mentorship. In 2020, she received the Dynamic Womxn of UC Irvine Award from the UCI Womxn’s Hub. And she's twice been named a recipient of the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program's Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Fostering Undergraduate Research (2011, 2015).

Willoughby-Herard earned her Ph.D. in political science at UC Santa Barbara and was a Black studies department teaching assistant and a feminist studies department teaching assistant and lecturer. In addition to her role at UCI, she is Professor Extraordinarius in the Chief Albert Luthuli Research Chair at the University of South Africa. She’s looking forward to collaborating and growing as a scholar in her new role in global and international studies.

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