Helen Mirfin-Boukouris

BA (Hons), MBA

Management School

Doctoral Researcher

Research Associate


Full contact details

Helen Mirfin-Boukouris
Management School
B02, Management School Doctoral Centre
Sheffield University Management School
Conduit Road
S10 1FL

Helen has been an Associate at Sheffield University Management School since 2012, teaching on undergraduate and masters courses.

She has considerable experience within the private sector including 12 years in the pharmaceutical industry with Johnson & Johnson and Wyeth Laboratories and several years within the computer hardware industry. She has also worked for the British Civil Service (Department of Employment) and the Police Service.

From 2004 to 2017, she served as a Sheffield City Councillor with responsibility in Cabinet, Shadow Cabinet and Scrutiny Boards across the portfolios of economy, education, culture and leisure. In 2011, she led a trade mission to Chengdu in China for Sheffield City Council along with South Yorkshire business representatives. Helen stood as a Labour party candidate in the 2014 European elections for the Yorkshire and Humber region. She is no longer politically active.


BA (Hons) Social & Political Studies 2:1 The University of Sheffield

MBA (Merit) The University of Sheffield School of Management

Research interests

Thesis Title:

The Diversity of Labour Practices across varied socio-economic localities within Sheffield City Region, England.

Scope of Research (aims and objectives):

The aim of my PhD is to rethink how we understand the ‘economic’ (Gibson-Graham, 2006) by undertaking a relevant piece of rigorous social science research which recognises the plurality of labour practices in societies (Gibson-Graham, 2006, 2008; Glucksmann, 2005; Williams, 2005, 2006; Williams et al., 2007).My empirical study will involve undertaking a household work practices approach and examine the motivations underpinning the use of different sources of labour. This will be achieved by utilising a variant of what Glucksmann (2005) calls a “total social organisation of labour” (TSOL) approach. This typology will be used as the conceptual framework for understanding the diversity of labour practices across varied socio-economic localities within the Sheffield City Region (SCR), in the Yorkshire and Humber Region of England. Such an approach will include a critical appraisal of the persistence of the market and non-market realms being portrayed as separate spheres and hostile worlds (Gibson-Graham, 2008; Williams and Zelizer, 2005).This PhD will engage with and explore how the dichotomous depiction of discrete market and non-market spheres is erroneous in failing to recognise that labour practices cannot always be neatly separated into market and non-market endeavours. Using a TSOL approach will allow an appreciation of the multiplicity of labour practices involving a spectrum of labour practices from relatively market oriented to more non-market-oriented labour practices, crosscut by a further spectrum (rather than dualism) from non-monetised, through gift-giving and in-kind reciprocal labour, to monetised labour.

Professional activities and memberships

Involvement in any Previous Research Projects:

  • The Medicalisation of Health (Dept of Sociology at the University of Sheffield)
  • Leadership in Secondary Education


  • Professor Colin Williams
  • Dr Lien Le Monkhouse
Conference papers

Littlewood, D., Ljubownikow, S., Mirfin-Boukouris, H., & Sepulveda, I.E.P. (2023). Assessing the state, impact, and potential of Sheffield's social enterprise community, International Social Innovation Research Conference 2023, Universidade do Minho, Campus de Azurém, Guimarães, September 6-8th.