The People and Dancefloors project began as a network of researchers, activists and filmmakers who wanted to tackle our cultural taboos around drugs to change the dominant narrative. We asked people to share their experiences about dancing and drug-taking on film, and we have since continued to engage in honest conversations about drugs in dancefloors contexts through research, blogging, podcasting, interviews, and our very own radio show. Through this body of work, we hope to promote a better understanding about the intersections between people, dancefloors and drug-taking, debunk myths, and challenge stigma.
Dr Giulia Federica Zampini is Associate Professor in Criminology and Social Policy at the University of Greenwich, London. Dr Zampini leads the ongoing project, ‘People and Dancefloors’, currently spanning multiple countries and regions, which involves team-based participatory action research. Before coming to academia, Dr Zampini was a volunteer in harm reduction services and drug policy reform advocacy.
People and Dancefloors UK
The first expansion of the people and dancefloors network was in the UK. Giulia and Eve worked together on the project from near the beginning, and were later joined by Dr Anthony Killick, who was then based at Liverpool John Moores University and later moved to the British University of Egypt and started the MENA chapter of the project with People and Dancefloors Cairo. Meanwhile, Giulia started working with Alex Frankovich (Birkbeck university) on a new monthly radio show that would continue on the quest to challenge stigma and debunk myths about people, dancefloors and drug-talking. Giulia and Alex are currently curating the monthly radio show, parts of which will soon feature on Season 3 of the People and Dancefloors podcast. Giulia and Juliet met recently, in December 2022, and became fast friends and collaborators. They are currently working together on a project, led by Juliet, to challenge the intergenerational transmission of stigma about drug use.
Eveleigh Buck-Matthews is a Lecturer in Criminology at Birmingham City University. She is Deputy Chair of the Participatory Geography Research Group and Co-convenor of the British Sociological Association Youth Study Group.Her research interests revolve around the social and spatial construction of youth communities, participatory methods and liminal spaces. Eveleigh’s published work explores recreational drug user narratives. She is a co-investigator on the People and Dancefloors Project, exploring recreational drug user narratives, and is a Director of Trans-States and editor of Monad: Journal of Transformative Practice.
Dr Alex Frankovitch is a Lecturer in Criminology at Birkbeck, University of London. Alex’s current research focuses on community-led forms of sexual violence prevention and drug harm reduction in nightlife settings. Alongside their academic job, they work as a welfare officer for multiple queer club nights in London.
Juliet Flam-Ross is a journalist, researcher, and organizer based in London, UK. Juliet’s current work is focused on stigma development towards people who use drugs, drug use for queer people, and the development of free and community-based anti-stigma interventions. Juliet is currently a masters student at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine studying public health, a freelance journalist on harm reduction, a volunteer on a peer-to-peer naloxone program, and a regional contributing editor on the UK for Points.
People and Dancefloors Malta
The People and Dancefloors Malta project began in 2020, when Karen Mamo (Harm Reduction Malta) and Giulia Zampini started collaborating. Building on our qualitative research project in 2021, which investigated people’s experiences of drugs in dance floors context in Malta, we run a successful pilot delivering welfare and harm reduction information at Earth Garden festival in 2022 in partnership with ENCOD and Drugs and Me. In 2023, we held meetings with stakeholders and disseminated our research findings to them through a research pamphlet. We also created a harm reduction guidelines booklet and social media-focused material in both English and Maltese to inform people about risks and provide advice on how to adopt safer practices.
Karen Mamo holds a Master of Arts and a Master of Science in Mediterranean Security and Conflict Resolution, and an Honours degree in Italian Language and Literature. In 2022 she has also successfully completed a Master of Science on Addiction studies at the University of Malta and is one of the co-authors of the civil society policy document A social equity approach for cooperative and environmentally sustainable practices within Maltese Cannabis Associations. In 2019 she set up the first Maltese social media page about harm reduction (Harm Reduction Malta). Since then, she has been active in raising awareness about the importance of dialogue and a more inclusive approach to promote the health and wellbeing of people who use drugs.
People and Dancefloors Brazil
In 2022, Giulia Zampini and Prof Carlos Palombini collaborated on some qualitative research with Brazilian people about their experiences with drugs and dance floors. Given prof Palombini’s longstanding interest and ethnomusicological research into Baile Funk, many participants came from the Brazilian Funk scene and spoke candidly about issues of racial and class inequalities during interviews. This collaboration was pivotal to opening up new lines of inquiry in the people and dancefloors project, particularly in considering the question: what does it mean to decolonise research in this area of drugs and clubs studies?
Doutor em Música pela Universidade de Durham, UK (1993); bolsista PQ-CNPq 2007–2025. Professor de Musicologia na Escola de Música da UFMG 2002–2022. Professor Visitante no Programa de Pós-Graduação em Antropologia Social do Museu Nacional UFRJ, 2022-II e 2017-II. Membro colaborador e permanente do Programa de Pós-graduação em Música do IVL-UNIRIO, 2013–2020. Membro permanente do Programa de Pós-graduação em Música da UFMG, 2002–2015. Pesquisador Residente no Instituto de Estudos Avançados Transdisciplinares da UFMG, 2011–2012. Professor Visitante no Programa de Mestrado e Doutorado em Música da Universidade Autônoma do México, nov. – dez. 2011. Professor Visitante no departamento de música da UFPE, 1998–2000. Orienta ou orientou projetos de IC, Mestrado, Doutorado e Pós-doutorado nas áreas de Música, Antropologia Social, e Cultura e Territorialidades na UFMG, UNIRIO, UFRJ, UFF e USP. Entre 2008 e 2010 reconstituiu, traduziu e publicou, em edições críticas, um original inédito inacabado e abandonado de Pierre Schaeffer, o Essai sur la radio et le cinéma : esthétique et technique des arts-relais 1941–1942 lançado simultaneamente na França (Paris: Allia) e no Brasil (Belo Horizonte: UFMG) em 2010.