Dr Keir Milburn

Lecturer in Political Economy and OrganisationKeir Milburn

Contact details

  • Tel: +44 (0)116 252 2008
  • Email: km256@le.ac.uk
  • Office: Room 610, Level 6, Ken Edwards building
  • Office hours: Friday 2.00 pm - 3.00 pm

Personal details

I joined the (then) School of Management in April 2011, having previously taught at the University of Leeds. I hold a PhD in Politics, an MA in Cultural Studies and a BA in Political Studies.


My research takes place on the boundaries between organisational theory, political theory and cultural studies. I focus, in particular, on how organisational structures are impacted by transformation in the subjectivities, values and desires that animate them.

At the moment, this focus covers three areas:
  1. Political generations, in particular the composition and political imaginaries of the ‘young, new socialist, left’.
  2. Radical municipalism and ‘Public Commons Partnerships’ as transitionary policies to address our current economic and environmental crises.
  3. The role of cultural activism, countercultural movements and cultural policy on social change.

Recent publications

Milburn, K. (2019) Generation Left, London: Polity http://politybooks.com/bookdetail/?isbn=9781509532230

Milburn, K. (2019) Inequality created a political generation gap. Which party will bridge it? The Guardian (27/11/19):https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/nov/27/inequality-political-generation-gap-labour-conservatives

Milburn, K. (2019) Like it or not, ‘Generation Snowflake’ has got a raw deal. The Guardian (21/6/19): https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/jun/21/generation-snowflake-young-people-wages-housing-leftwing

Milburn, K. (2019) The old flock to Farage and the young are on climate strike. How did age come to define our politics? The Independent (24/5/19): https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/nigel-farage-climate-change-strike-brexit-party-generation-divide-inequality-a8929126.html

Milburn, K. Russell, B. (2019) Public-Common Partnerships: Building New Circuits of Collective Ownership. Report for Common Wealth Think Tank: https://www.common-wealth.co.uk/reports/public-common-partnerships-building-new-circuits-of-collective-ownership

Milburn, K. Russell, B. (2018) What can an institution do? Towards Public-Commons-Partnerships and a new common sense. Renewal, 26(4)http://renewal.org.uk/files/Milburn_Russell_what_can_an_institution_do.pdf

Milburn, K. (2018). The comedian as populist leader: Postironic narratives in an age of cynical irony. Leadership. https://doi.org/10.1177/1742715018809750

Harvie, D. Milburn, K. (2016) On the uses of fairy dust: Contagion, sorcery and the crafting of other worlds, Culture and Organization, 24:3, 179-195,DOI: 10.1080/14759551.2015.1118636

I am also co-host the #ACFM podcast on Novara Media https://novaramedia.com/category/audio/acfm/

Previous Books

The Free Association [Harvie, D., Milburn, K. and Watts, D.] (2011) Moments of Excess: Movements, Protest and Everyday Life. Oakland, C.A.: PM Press.

Harvie, D., Milburn, K. Mueller. T. Nunes, R. Osterweil, M. Summer, K. Trott, B. (Eds) (2010) What Would it Mean to Win?, Oakland, C.A.: PM Press.

Harvie, D., Milburn, K., Trott, B. and Watts, D. (Eds) (2005) Shut Them Down! The G8, Gleneagles 2005 and the Movement of Movements, Brooklyn, N.Y.: Autonomedia.

Reviews and Discussion of My Work

Davies, W. (2020) Bloody Furious: Review of Generation Left. London Review of Books, Vol. 42 No. 4, 20 February 2020. https://www.lrb.co.uk/the-paper/v42/n04/william-davies/bloody-furious

Washington Post: The people power behind Sanders’s debt cancellation plan (Sarah Jaffe): https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2019/06/26/people-power-behind-sanderss-debt-cancellation-plan/

New Statesman: It’s easy to hate baby boomers - but resentment dulls our political imagination. (Eleanor Kate - 26/11/19)https://www.newstatesman.com/politics/economy/2019/11/it-s-easy-hate-baby-boomers-resentment-dulls-our-political-imagination

Bloomberg Opinion: Comedians in Politics Just Isn’t Funny Anymore. (Leonid Bershidsky - 3/10/19) https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2019-10-03/comedians-in-politics-it-just-isn-t-funny-anymore

Wired magazine: The left-wing meme-makers trying to reclaim meme culture (Emily Reynolds): https://www.wired.co.uk/article/left-wing-memes


I am interested in supervising students who share any of my research interests. Current or recent doctoral students:

  • Claire Deschner – ‘The performative practice of prefiguration: performance hierarchies in anarchist organising.’
  • Margherita Grazioli - 'The mobile commons of migrant communities'
  • Gareth Brown - 'Can a Knife of Shadows Cut Real Flesh from a Living Tree? The Organisation of Imaginal Commons'


I am co-module lead on:
  • MN1009 Management Inquiry and Analysis – a core first year undergraduate module
I am module lead on:
  • MN2120 The Business Environment – a core second year undergraduate module
  • MN2125 Crisis Management – an optional second year undergraduate module
  • MN3145 Managing in a Post-Crisis World – an optional third year undergraduate module

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Contact Details

School of Business
University of Leicester
University Road



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