Polina Baum-Talmor

Research Officer
email: BaumP@cf.ac.uk

Polina has recently been awarded her PhD. Her thesis on the flexibilisation of labour among seafarers, funded through the SIRC–Nippon Foundation Fellowship programme (2012-2016), can be found here: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/109438/. She obtained a Master of Science (MSc) diploma in Social Sciences Research Methods (SSRM) with merit from Cardiff University in 2013. Prior to this, completed a Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree in Sociology, Anthropology and Human Resources in 2009 at the University of Haifa (Israel).  Studying at the same university, Polina completed a Masters’ dissertation entitled: 'From sea to shore: An ethnographic account of seafaring experience', attaining a Master of Arts (MA) degree in Anthropology with distinction in 2012.

During her MA studies at the University of Haifa, Polina worked as a research and teaching assistant, teaching undergraduate students in: ‘Introduction to Anthropology’ (2010); ‘Introduction to anthropology’ (2011); ‘Qualitative methods’ (2011-2012); as well as Masters students in ‘Qualitative Methods- introduction’ (2012) and contributing to ongoing projects at the department of Sociology and Anthropology at the university.

Currently Polina provides research assistance on an ongoing project at the Centre in relation to the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH).

Research interests include:

  • The shift from bureaucratic to flexible employment in the global labour market, especially issues relating to recruitment, training, and retention of employees
  • Intra-occupational, cross-sector and intra-sector transferability of skills
  • Various aspects of employment in the global shipping industry, especially concerning the global labour force of seafarers, for example:
    • Precarious employment among seafarers
    • Multinational work environment
  • Qualitative research methods, including ethnography, participant/non-participant observation and interviews (individual and group interviews)
  • Qualitative data analysis, including the use of CAQDAS (e.g. Nvivo, atlas.ti)

Recent and forthcoming publications include:

  • Baum-Talmor, P. (Forthcoming) Careers and Labour Market Flexibility in Global Industries: The Case of Seafarers. PhD Thesis, Cardiff University.
  • Baum-Talmor, P. (Forthcoming) Careers at sea: Exploring seafarer motivations and aspirations. World of the Seafarer (Book), edited by Gekara, V., Sampson, H. and Walters, D. 
  • Baum-Talmor, P. (2015)Dispatches from the sea - The Outsider.Seafarer Asia Magazine. pp. 36-38.
  • Baum-Talmor, P. (2015)Flexibility, Security and the need for training (with Gekara, V.O.). Seaways - The International Journal of the Nautical Institute. January.
  • Baum-Talmor, P. (2014)From sea to shore: Ethnographic account of seafarers’ experience on-board merchant ships. Sage Cases in Methodology, 17. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4135/978144627305013508492.
  • Baum-Talmor, P. (2012) From Sea to Shore: An Ethnographic Account of Seafaring Experience. (M.A. Dissertation), Department of Social Sciences (Anthropology), University of Haifa, Israel.

Conference papers presented include:

  • For Better and for worse: Seafaring as a career for life? In:  Liverpool Management School Annual Ethnography Symposium. UWE (University of West England), Bristol, 26 August 2016.
  • (Mis)adventures in the field: Reflections on Risk management in Social Research (with Llangco, M.O.S.). In:  Breaking Boundaries conference. Cardiff University, Cardiff, 21 April 2016, and also in:  Postgraduate Café annual conference. Cardiff University, Cardiff, 5 May 2016.
  • 'Even if you are a spy…’: Some challenges in researcher’s positioning aboard a cargo ship. In:  10th Annual Symposium on Current Developments in Ethnographic Research in the Social and Management Sciences, University of Liverpool,Liverpool, 25-26 August 2015.
  • A Storm is brewing: Life on board continues despite rough seas (Image Presented). In:  Images of Research Competition. Cardiff University, Cardiff, 3 December 2015.
  • ‘Sailing through life at sea: Physical and emotional aspects of seafarers’ welfare’. British Universities Industrial Relations Association (BUIRA), 3rd BUIRA PhD Symposium, Cardiff University, Cardiff, 5-6 November 2015.
  • ‘The notion of ‘career’ in a globalised industry: The case of seafarers’, a paper presented as part of the WELM (Work Employment and the Labour Market) group in Cardiff University, Cardiff, 17 July 2015.
  • ‘Even if you are a spy...’ Some challenges in researcher’s positioning aboard a cargo ship, PG (Postgraduate) Café annual conference, Cardiff University, Cardiff, March 2015.
  • PUBlic engagement talk (at the Barker pub in Cardiff) – talking about research in an informal environment, November 2014.
  • Prepare for the worst: The importance of research design (for the purposes of the Annual Progress Review Report). In:  Annual Social Science Doctoral Conference. Cardiff University, Cardiff, 13 June 2014.
  • Sailing Through Life at Sea: Physical and Emotional Aspects of Seafarers’ Welfare. In:  The Health and Welfare of Seafarers: Past, Present and Prospects Conference. University of Hull, Hull, 30 January-1 February 2014. Maritime Historical Studies Centre. (The presentation was mentioned in an article in the Nautical Institute Telegraph magazine)
  • Sailing Through Life at Sea: Physical and Emotional Aspects of Seafarers’ Welfare. In:  Voice of Humanities Conference - Cardiff University. Cardiff, 20 March 2014.
  • The notion of career in a globalised industry: The case of seafarers (Presented a Poster and won first prize award). In:  9th Annual Symposium on Current Developments in Ethnographic Research in the Social and Management Sciences, University of SuffolkIpswich, 27-29 August 2014.
  • ‘Living and working at sea’. An image presented at the Cardiff University Images of Research 2013 competition, Cardiff University, Cardiff, December 2013.
  • Urban Ethnography Summer School (two weeks). Presented a shared paper at the end of the conference titled: “‘Could you pass the salt please?’ – The social aspect of food”, which focused on the role that food plays in social interaction. The summer school took place in Varna, Bulgaria. September 2013.
  • ‘Isolated at Sea: An Ethnographic Account of Seafaring’. A poster presented at the junior researchers’ conference, University of Haifa, Haifa, Israel, 3 May 2012.


LRF research unit