I am originally from County Donegal, and after having completed my BA in UCD (1985), in English and History, I spent fifteen years abroad in London, Barcelona and Lima, Peru. During that time I worked in libraries, local government, English language teaching and international development. While in London, I completed a part-time MSc in Sociology (Southbank University) graduating in 1995. On returning to Ireland in 2000, I began my PhD in DCU, with Prof. Peadar Kirby, researching populism in the context of Latin America, particularly in Venezuela and Peru. I graduated with my PhD in 2004, and went to work with Comhlamh, the Irish Association for Returned Development Workers, working on a project on international volunteering (www.volunteeringoptions.org). I then returned to DCU in 2006 and led an international development research project on democratization and development in the Central American region. In 2010, I won an Irish Research Council Fellowship to research the Latin American Right, including spending two years in the University of Salamanca, Spain. In 2013 I started my present position with Maynooth. While in Maynooth’s Sociology department, I have researched civil society/state relations, democratisation, populism, and the left and right in Latin America and elsewhere and on contemporary Venezuelan politics. In the Sociology department I teach modules on political ideas, democracy and citizenship, Latin American politics and supporting third years on their final year dissertations.