Dr Nataša Pantić

Programme Director: MSc Inclusive Education / Chancellor's Fellow


I joined the University of Edinburgh in September 2012 as a Chancellor's Research Fellow. I completed my PhD at Utrecht University, Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences in 2011, and worked as a researcher with the Centre for Education Policy in Belgrade from 2006 to 2012. Previously I worked as a Democratisation and Education Assistant with the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe from 1998 to 2004.

I am passionate about educational research and methodological innovation, and their uses for addressing education challenges in contexts of increasing diversity and change. Much of my work has focused on teachers and their education for acting as agents of change. I have published extensively on opportunities and challenges for teachers’ working to address educational inequalities, and their collaboration with other actors to support all students, especially the vulnerable ones. Since 2002 I have engaged in numerous research and reform projects, both as an academic, and in various consultancy roles for international organisations.


PhD in Education Science, Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences, Utrecht University, the Netherlands. Supervisor: Professor Theo Wubbels  

MSc in Education (with Distinction), School of Education, University of Edinburgh, UK

Teaching Qualification, Faculty of Philology, University of Belgrade, Serbia 

Responsibilities & affiliations

Currently I am the Director of MSc in Inclusive Education programme, recently accredited by the General Teaching Council Scotland.

The programme responds to the need for professionals who can respond to the increasing cultural, linguistic and developmental diversity of school communities, and to the pressure to achieve high academic standards for everybody, while safeguarding the inclusion of those who are vulnerable to exclusion and other forms of marginalisation.

Undergraduate teaching



Postgraduate teaching

I have developed and led a PG Course Teachers as Agents of Change for Master students practicing teachers as a Professional Learning opportunity.

The course provides an opportunity to grapple with what it means for teachers to act as agent of change and what this might look like in their workplaces. We draw on international research to consider how policy and social contexts shape teachers’ practices and ways of working with others including students, colleagues, families, or other professionals. 

Open to PhD supervision enquiries?


Areas of interest for supervision

I am interested in supervising doctoral research in the areas of teacher agency, reflective practice and collaborative working across school boundaries. I particularly welcome projects that use innovative methodologies, such as mixed-method social network analysis.

Currently, I'm looking to recruit a doctoral student for a fully-funded (ESRC Interdisciplinary Steer) PhD project. More details and how to apply can be found at the link below.

Making Sense of Teachers’ Communities of Practice with Social and Epistemic Network Analysis. Supervisors Natasa Pantic (Education), Dragan Gasevic (Informatics) and Gil Viry (Sociology)


Current PhD students supervised

Elizabeth Ann McClure, How Integration of University and Site-based Learning in Teacher Education Facilitates Student Teachers’ Critical Reflection? The project looks at the impact of integrated teacher education programme on teachers' beliefs and innovative practices.


Past PhD students supervised

Justine MacLean, The Factors that Enable and Constrain Physical Education Teachers to Exercise Agency During Large-scale Educational Reform. The thesis by publication used a mixed-method design to examine interactions between teacher agency and education structures over time.  

Jiyoung Kim, Inclusive Practice under a Policy of Integration: Learning from the Implementation of Support Assistant Provision in S. Korean Schools. The project compares cases of teacher collaboration with teaching assistants across classrooms and schools.


Research summary

My current work focuses on relational dynamics in education setting. I explore how teachers’ social networks influence change in their epistemic beliefs and practices over time. I am also interested in how actors’ purposeful day-to-day interactions with colleagues, parents and other professionals shape the more stable relational structures (e.g. collegial support and trust), which in turn form a backdrop for future individual practices.

Current research interests

Teacher agency and educational change, school and policy factors that shape teacher practices Mixed-method Social Network Analysis, Epistemic Network Analysis

Past research interests

Teacher education for changing demographic of schooling Education policies and citizenship regimes Collaborative and mixed methods in educational research

Knowledge exchange

I regularly engage in knowledge exchange activities with teachers and other practitioners, policy makers and international organisations, and involve non-academic partners in all phases of research process, including design. For recent activities see https://www.team4change.education.ed.ac.uk/events/


Affiliated research centres

Research activities

View all 20 activities on Research Explorer

Project activity

Research on Teachers as Agents of Social Justice

Teachers are increasingly called upon to act as ‘agents of change’ often in the context of social justice agendas. My recent projects focused on:

  • how teachers’ capacities to act as agents of change for social justice manifest in their practices,
  • how school and policy level factors affect such capacities, and
  • how agency can be developed in teacher education and professional development programmes.

Teachers as Agents of Social Change project website

More information and details of research can be found on Nataša's own website


Current project grants

Making SENse of Communities of Practice with Social and Epistemic Network Analysis (2018/19)
Teachers’ collaboration with others (e.g. colleagues, families, and other professionals) is an essential aspect of their agency for change. Communities of Practice (CoPs) – a form of collaboration characterised by shared purposes and mutual support – can make a difference in student outcomes, including but not limited to achievement, especially for vulnerable learners. But how do teachers build such communities in the first place?
We employ Social and Epistemic network analysis to study how teachers’ beliefs and practices shape and are shaped by their social networks within and beyond schools. The aim is to understand how CoPs emerge from teachers’ day-to-day interactions with colleagues, families, and other professionals as they seek to improve all students’ learning and schooling experiences. Read more:
The project is supported by an ESRC Impact Acceleration Award to design a tool for teachers’ professional reflection based on their network feedback.

Past project grants

Making Visible Teacher Agency for Inclusion (2017/18) project focused on how teachers build supportive and trustful relationships with each other, with students and their families, supported by the ESRC Impact Acceleration grant.
The Impact of University Programmes on Teachers’ Development as Agents of Social Justice (2015/16), UoE Principal’s Teaching Award.
Teacher Education for Changing Demographics of Schooling (2014-2016), Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Seminar series, Co-I
Beyond Disciplines (2015/16), UoE Institute for Academic Development, Co-I.

Teachers as Agents of Change: Developing Collaborative Research Methodology (2014-2016), UoE Godfrey Thomson Research Fund.

Mapping and Upgrading Teacher Education for Inclusive Practice (2013- 2015), Consultancy for the Council of Europe.
Exploring the Distinctive Contribution of Higher Education to Teacher Education (2013/14), Consultancy for the UK Higher Education Academy.

Citizenship and Education Policies in Post-Yugoslav states (2011/12), part of European Research Council grant led by prof. Jo Shaw.

Mapping Teacher Preparation for Inclusive Education in Contexts of Social and Cultural Diversity in the Western Balkans (2010/11), European Training Foundation.

Teachers’ Competences for Inclusive and Intercultural Education (2010/11), UNICEF.

Tuning Teacher Education Curricula in the Western Balkans (2008/09), Balkan Trust for Democracy and Central European Initiative.

View all 26 publications on Research Explorer