Laura Popa is an international PhD candidate and researcher in History and Cultural Studies at the University of Giessen and holds the Evangelisches Studienwerk scholarship in Germany. Since December 2023, she has been appointed research associate at the Cambridge Centre for Christianity Worldwide (CCCW) in the UK. Before that, Popa was a visiting scholar at Sidney Sussex College of the University of Cambridge and a fellow of the German Historical Institute in Rome, Italy. Popa’s dissertation project, Nation-State Building at the Crossroads of Gender, Culture, and Religion: Protestant Women Schoolteachers in Italy, 1860–1915, investigates for the first time how and why a group of minority Protestant women tried to build the Italian nation through professional teaching and missionary activities.

During her academic career, she conducted research, taught, and published in the UK, Germany, Italy, and Romania.  Her research interests focus on history, religion, and culture in the late modern period, ranging from women’s history, the history of feminism and feminist theory, to the cultural theory of hybridity, nation, and religious minorities, and the cultural history of Protestant Christianity. More recently, Popa organised the conference entitled Bible Revolution: Empowering People, Subverting Identities. New Study Directions in 21st-Century Academic Research at the Faculty of History of the University of Cambridge in 2023. The event was funded by the Evangelisches Studienwerk and organised in collaboration with Prof Eugenio Biagini (University of Cambridge) and the CCCW. Popa is also a collaborator of the research project Protestantism as a Minority Religion initiated by Prof Biagini.  Her upcoming publications in 2024 include the edited volume Cultural Identities in a Global World: Reframing Cultural Hybridity and the article Hybridity and Protestantism in the Twenty-First Century Global World with the WVT, and the book chapter “He teaches me so I can teach”: Revivalism and Laywomen in Nineteenth-Century Italy with Palgrave Macmillan.

A recent research interest of hers is finding conceptual and methodological connections between Cultural Studies, Protestantism, and World Christianity.