Tamar Oderwald (she/her)


After four exciting years, I graduated from the Ba program Cultural Anthropology in the summer of 2021, and I am now following the Visual Anthropology master at the University of Amsterdam. I joined SCAJ at its founding, as I connected deeply with the mission and potential of this platform. This accessible space of knowledge exchange and academic growth is one I continue to grow more enthusiastic for by the day.

As editor-in-chief I oversee the editorial board and keep track of the process towards our publications. I also keep our website up-to-date, so that our readers can receive the latest information on SCAJ.

I have previously done research on food-triggered body memory among Indian migrants in the Netherlands. Other interests of mine include material culture, sustainability, and visual media.

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Sanne Leenders (she/her)

Managing editor

I am in my fourth and final year of the Bachelor Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology at Utrecht University. This means that I am currently in the process of conducting fieldwork in Toronto, Canada, and writing my thesis. I joined SCAJ in my second academic year because I truly believe it is a great initiative to provide a platform for students to share their work in an accessible way.


During the first few editions I fulfilled the role of commissioner of communications within the core team of SCAJ, being involved in both internal and external communications. After this, I took on the role of managing editor. As managing editor, I keep an overview of our progress and the eventual publication of the journal. In addition, I assist the rest of the team in their activities wherever possible. As we are still a relatively new foundation, I really enjoy being involved in our development and seeing our platform grow constantly.


My personal interests within anthropology are very broad but mainly focus on identity, post-colonialism, gender, and corporate anthropology.

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Machteld Nuiver (she/her)

Founder | External affairs

I am a first year student of the MSc. Cultural Anthropology: Sociocultural Transformation at Utrecht University. I strongly believe that creating visibility for students and their written work contributes to a more holistic and productive learning environment. People need to feel that their work matters in order to develop their academic skills. And our work does matter. This was the belief upon which I founded SCAJ in 2019, and which continues to fuel my work as manager of external affairs.


I am currently involved in maintaining  SCAJ’s relations with external partners and stakeholders such as sponsors and the university. 


My research interests relate to decolonial  anthropology and I currently focus on concepts like (homo-) nationalism, race, whiteness and the nation-state.


Miriam van den Berg (she/her)

Communications | Fieldnotes

I am currently in my third year of the Bachelor Cultural Anthropology at Utrecht University. I joined SCAJ because I wanted to be part of an initiative where knowledge is accessible for everyone. It is important to me that students can learn from and with each other, and SCAJ makes this possible. This is why I'm happy to be part of our core team and help this platform grow.


As part of the internal communications team at SCAJ, I do the intake of our submissions and prepare them for the review process. We also handle the contact with the authors and reviewers. In addition, I am part of our Fieldnotes-team, which means that I read and review all Fieldnotes submissions. 


My interests within anthropology are diverse and change often. Even though I am pretty much interested in everything, my main interests are migration, ethnicity, ethics and conflict.


Stan Zilver (she/her)

Communications | Fieldnotes

I am a second year student of the Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology Bachelor at Utrecht University. I joined SCAJ because I wanted to be part of this unique and promising initiative, broaden my skills and meet more anthropology enthusiasts. I think it is extremely valuable for students to be able to share their work and read what others are doing. It expands our knowledge and gives all our hard academic work an extra purpose. 


I am part of the internal communications team. We will organize the review process, which means going through the submission and staying in touch with authors as well as reviewers, and checking our inbox regularly. In addition I am working on Fieldnotes, reading and reviewing everything sent in, and discussing it with the Fieldnotes team. 


My interests within anthropology are ever changing and endless, but within my studies I am mainly focused on political as well as economic anthropology.


Gema Benavides Jiménez (she/her)

Core reviewer | External communications

I’m currently in my third and last year of my bachelors in Liberal Arts and Sciences at the University College Utrecht and I  am majoring in Psychology and Anthropology.  I decided to join SCAJ a year ago because I believe it is a space that rewards curiosity, passion and learning from one another. It gives students a chance to get their hard-work recognized in a more fulfilling and enriching way than by just getting it graded by a professor, but by getting it published and therefore, being able to share the knowledge they have gained so far with others so that everyone can learn as well.


My role within SCAJ started as external communications. I am the contact person for UCU and I stay in contact with the professors, arrange promotional talks during lectures and other external affairs. Since I wanted to be even more involved in SCAJ, now, I am also a core reviewer. 


My interest in anthropology is closely interlinked with the one for psychology, so I am always looking into ways I can combine both fields. My interest in anthropology mainly lies within medical anthropology, intercultural communication as well as with issues of power, gender, religion and decolonization studies.


Chandni Shyam (she/her)

Core reviewer

I am in the second year of the MSc. Cultural Anthropology: Sociocultural Transformation program at Utrecht University. I am currently doing fieldwork in Chennai (South India) on the State and its role during the pandemic. My academic interests are often spread out across concepts and disciplines but I am consistently enthralled by the width and girth of topics that are relevant to anthropological study and love to explore the mediums of its expression. SCAJ provides the perfect space for such exploration and an opportunity to collaborate, share ideas and writing without the pressures usually associated with academic spaces.


As a core reviewer, I work with a team to review and select papers for our next publication. I am very excited to be a part of a team that works towards enabling peer support and excited about what we can do together! 


I am currently interested in anthropology of the state, gender and care. I also love reading ethnographic explorations in medical anthropology.

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Mick Spaas (he/him)

Core reviewer

After a long educational journey I graduated from the bachelor Cultural Anthropology with a minor in Conflict Studies in 2021. To me, SCAJ provides opportunities for personal growth and academic skills for an audience that intends to find challenges outside the curriculum provided by the University. Simultaneously it renders academic knowledge and texts more accessible for a wider audience, which I think is important in times where the distance between the university and public increases. 


As a member of the core team, I cherish the opportunity to assist reviewers in the processes and uphold the bar set by previous and current members of SCAJ  

Within anthropology my interests relate to matters of borders, (violent) conflict, contemporary state power in relation to political philosophy. Currently I am pursuing a masters in Human Geography with an emphasis on conflict, territories and identities in Nijmegen.


Lili Ainseba (she/her)

Core reviewer

Hi everyone! I am Lili, a student in the SCIM master's program. I had never studied anthropology before - I actually chose this master’s for the sustainability part! - but I am falling head over heels in love with it. After years of moving around the world and living in various settings, I realize how powerful and important anthropology can be to create a connection between people. 

I will be a core reviewer for this edition and am really excited to be part of SCAJ - I love the fact that it is a student-built initiative and that its growth is based on care, hard-work and open-mindedness. I find it fantastic that students can submit the work they feel proud of, and I am excited to read the submissions!

I love doing yoga, sprinkling cinnamon on top of everything and volunteering in local farms. My anthropological interests of the moment relate to sustainable food systems, more-than-human ethnographies, and creative writing in time of climate change. 


Merel Driessen (she/her)

Core reviewer

Hi all! As a first year CASTOR student and 2020 graduate of the UU CA bachelor, anthropology can be said to have become a core feature of my personality. The openness and especially the diversity within the discipline is something I care deeply about. SCAJ is at its core about showcasing that diversity through offering genuine opportunities for young aspiring writers and creators.  


I can’t be more excited to start my position as core reviewer and read through all the creative and no doubt inspiring submissions. 


My own anthropological interests lie with topics of state and nationhood, nationalism and separatist movements, as well as with issues of self-expression, friendship and the anthropology of emotions.


Marilyn Franken (she/her)


I am currently in my third year of the BA program Cultural Anthropology at Utrecht University. After being part of the selection committee for two times, I decided to join the core team of SCAJ because I really support the idea of an inclusive platform where we can all learn from each other by making knowledge accessible for everyone. Besides, SCAJ offers multiple opportunities for personal growth and academic skills to develop. 


As a member of the core team, I am guiding the design processes of the journals and the design on social media. 


My personal interests within anthropology are mainly focused on the topics of (violent) conflict and youth, but also on topics related to gender, power and identity. 

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Susan Peschier (she/her)

Design | Fieldnotes

I am a first year Ba Cultural Anthropology student at Utrecht University and a fourth year BA Religious Studies student at Leiden University.  I joined SCAJ because I believe that students should be able to show other students their academic work without there being an educational pressure. Furthermore, I wanted to expand my skills by doing something that I have never done before!


As a member of the core team, I work with the other members of the design team to create the layout of the  journal and social media posts. 


I am interested in the Dutch religious landscape that is changing due to the growth of migrants with different religious backgrounds. Moreover, I am interested in the Dutch education on the subjects of racism, cultural diversity, and prejudices.

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Sarah Salhany (she/her)

Advisory board

In the summer of 2020 I graduated from the Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology Bachelor’s program and one year later I also have a Master’s in Youth, Education and Society, both obtained at Utrecht University. I am passionate about connecting the disciplines of anthropology and pedagogy and am especially interested in topics related to education, children, religion, gender and the MENA region and diaspora. 


I am proud to be a member of SCAJ as I wholeheartedly believe in the power of knowledge exchange between students from all years and interests. SCAJ provides an accessible, engaging and inspiring way to do so. 


After having taken up several roles within SCAJ over the past years, I am now excited to contribute in my new position as an advisory board member.

Former SCAJ Members
We thank the following former core team members who contributed to the realization and the growth of SCAJ.