Professor Denise Hawkes

Head of School

Faculty:Faculty of Business and Law

Location: Chelmsford

Areas of Expertise: Business, management and leadership , Economics

Research Supervision:Yes

As Head of School of Economics, Finance and Law, Denise oversees the teaching, research and enterprise activity within the school across the areas of Economics, International Business, Accounting, Finance, Supply Chain Management and Law.

Connect with Denise on LinkedIn

Find out more about Denise's role at the Royal Economic Society


Denise's research is focused on higher education transitions, equality, diversity and inclusion in higher education and the value of doctoral education. She has held research grants with various funders including ERSC, OfS and British Council.

She has published widely, most significantly in American Economic Review, Journal of the Royal Statistical Series A and London Review of Education. Prior to joining ARU, she was professor and Head of Department of Economics and International Business at the University of Greenwich and previously Academic Head of Research, Consultancy and Knowledge Transfer in the Centre for Doctoral Education, UCL Institute of Education.

Research interests

  • Economics of education (focused on higher education transitions)
  • Economics education (focused on doctoral education, dissertations and ipsative feedback)
  • Labour economics (focused on women and graduates experiences in the labour market)
  • Education evaluation (focused on impact evaluation of learning and teaching in initiatives in higher education)
  • Pay and progression gaps (focused on gender and ethnicity gaps in higher education)

Areas of research supervision

Denise is an experienced research degree supervisor with experience with both PhD and professional doctorates. She has 13 research degree completions and is an experienced research degree examiner with 11 doctoral examinations undertaken. She is interested in supervising students in areas related to:

  • Impact evaluation of initiatives in higher education
  • Removing pay gaps in graduate roles and the labour market
  • Closing awarding and continuation gaps in higher education
  • Eliminating academic careers progression gaps


Denise has extensive experience teaching education economics, applied econometrics, research and secondary data analysis to students of many different educational backgrounds and levels of study.


  • PhD Economics, Queen Mary, University of London
  • MPhil Economics, University of Oxford
  • BSc (Econ) Economics, University College London
  • Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (PFHEA)

Memberships, editorial boards

  • External Examiners National Directory based on completed Professional Development Course for External Examiners, Advance HE
  • Chair of the Education and Training Committee, Royal Economic Society
  • Steering Group Member of Conference of Heads of University Departments of Economics (CHUDE), Royal Economic Society
  • Advisory Board Member, Centre for Teaching and Learning Economics (CTaLE)
  • Member of the Management Board Economics Network (EN)
  • External Examiner for MSc International Business Economics and MSc International Finance & Economics, University of Sussex
  • Editorial Board Member, Equity in Education & Society Journal
  • Editorial Advisory Group Member for Economics, Econometrics and Finance, Cambridge Scholars (Publisher)

Research grants, consultancy, knowledge exchange

  • Evaluating the impact of COVID online teaching on the Awarding Gaps in Economics: Evidence from the University of Greenwich, Royal Economic Society, Principal Investigator, £14k.
  • GREHacks, Office for Students, Co-Investigator supporting the evaluation of the effectiveness of the programme £12.7k for evaluation of £300k.
  • Capacity Building Project on Doctoral Supervision in Georgia – Developing Supervisor Skills for working with Doctoral Candidates with Professional Experience, UCL IoE International Funds, Co-Investigator as expert in Professional Doctorates, £5k.

Selected recent publications

Cagliesi, G. and Hawkes, D. (2021) Are we all in this together? Alleviating the childcare constraint for women in economic crises, International Journal of Social Economics, 48(9), pp. 1245-1263.

Ashraf, M., Cagliesi, G., Hawkes, D. and Rab, M. (2021) Tackling the gender biases in higher education careers in Pakistan: potential online opportunities post COVID-19, Emerald Open Res, 2021, pp. 3-13

Hawkes, D. and Grianza, A. (2019) A systematic literature review of economic benefits of doctorates in the UK, Work Based Learning e-Journal International, 8(2), pp. 1-27

Hawkes, D., Yerrabati, S. and Taylor, S. (2018) The EdD at 20: Lessons Learned from Professional Doctorates, London Review of Education, 16(1), pp. 1-3.

Hawkes, D., and Yerrabati, S. (2018) A Systematic Review of Research on Professional Doctorates, London Review of Education, 16(1), pp. 10-27.

Recent presentations and conferences

Grianza, A., Hawkes, D., and Kambouri, M., (2021) Developing an Online Doctoral Supervisory Training Programme: Insights from a Cross-National (UK-Georgia) Knowledge Exchange Partnership. Paper presented at International Conference hosted by the East European University and Ivana Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University. Georgia considering The University Purpose and Institutional Autonomy: Challengers and their Impact on Georgia. Tbilisi, Georgia

Cagliesi, G. and Hawkes, D. (2021) Do We Have the Right Metrics to Assess the Ethnicity Gaps in Education? Paper presented at Developments in Economics Education conference, UK

Cagliesi, G. and Hawkes, D. (2021) Do We Have the Right Metrics to Assess the Ethnicity Gaps in Education? Paper presented at British Educational Research Association, UK.

Hawkes, D. and Mehari, T. (2021) Measuring and Correcting Inequality in Opportunity in Higher Education Careers: Insights from an Equality Audit of an Academic Department. Paper presented at Advance HE Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Conference 2021, UK

Media experience

Academic Careers
Coverage of the Doctoral Capacity Building Programme in Pakistan
Professional Doctorate Programmes
Consequences of Teenage Motherhood