Skip to content

Toggle service links

You are here

  1. Home
  2. Research
  3. Research degrees
  4. Joanne Vincett

Joanne Vincett

Research student

Joanne Vincett is affiliated with The Open University's Department of People and Organisations.

You can email Joanne Vincett directly; but for media enquiries please contact a member of The Open University's Media Relations team.


Joanne previously was the Associate Director for the social enterprise sector and international lead for the Career Development Office at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College in the US. She also was an Adjunct Professor at Granite State College and taught a Business Management course ‘Effecting Positive Change in Organizations’.

Prior to academia, Joanne started in the graphic arts paper manufacturing industry in corporate sales and marketing. After 5 years, she changed her focus to social enterprises and worked for the US Peace Corps in the Eastern Caribbean as a Small Business Development Trainer and Counsellor for a rural agricultural development NGO and was the elected Lead Volunteer for a group of 19 Peace Corps Volunteers in Antigua and Barbuda.

She holds an MRes from The Open University, an International MBA from Escuela de Alta Dirección y Administración (EADA) in Barcelona, Spain, and BSc in Business Administration from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She completed an apprenticeship with the United Nations International Trade Centre in Geneva, Switzerland, and United Nations Industrial Development Organisation in Vienna, Austria. She holds a Professional Coaching Certification and also created the Professional Coaching Portal for the non-profit organization MERLOT (Multimedia Educational Resource for Learning and Online Teaching).

Research interests

Current research

The Compassion Paradox in Volunteer Work: An Ethnography of a Voluntary Befriending Organisation

Joanne's current research is an organisational ethnography of Yarl's Wood Befrienders, a voluntary organisation that visits women migrants and asylum seekers detained in Yarl’s Wood Immigration Removal Centre in Bedfordshire, England. She is a full member of the organisation she is studying, as a volunteer, befriender to detainees and a trustee on the Board of Directors responsible for fundraising. Her study furthers our knowledge of compassionate practices and emotion management in volunteer work, compassionate organisations and the voluntary sector support for immigration detainees, a marginalised and vulnerable group in society.

Research project website:


General research interests

  • Engaged approaches to understanding organisational cultures in the voluntary, third and public sectors
  • Migration-related issues, international development, immigration detention
  • Voluntary organisations and organisations with volunteering and/or international service learning programmes
  • Reflexivity, emotions and ethics in research
  • Ethnography and its potential for advocacy, social impact and policy change
  • Participatory and collaborative methods in qualitative research

External collaborations