Project Team

University of Sheffield

williamsProf Colin Williams, GREY Project coordinator, School of Management


Colin Williams is Professor of Public Policy and joined the Management School at the University of Sheffield in September 2006. Prior to this, he was a professor in the School of Management at the University of Leiceste
Colin’s broad research interests are in re-theorising the nature of economic development and investigating the implications for public policy. Spatially, his interests range across the full spectrum from local and regional economic development in the UK through to the restructuring of western economies, post-socialist societies and the third (majority) world. Much of his work focuses upon rethinking the meanings of ‘economic’ and ‘development,’ which directly feeds into the work of the Centre for Regional Economic and Enterprise Development (CREED). Colin’s particular research interest is in studying the magnitude and character of the informal economy and evaluating different public policy approaches and initiatives for tackling this sphere.
Colin currently serves as Editor of The International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy and the International Journal of Community Currency Research.

Full List of Publications

heyesProf Jason Heyes, School of Management

Jason is a Professor of Employment Relations in the School of Management at the University of Sheffield. He is also the Director of the Management School’s Work, Organisation and Employment Relations Research Centre (WOERRC). Before joining the Management School in 2012 he was a Reader in Human Resource Management and head of the Organisation, Work and Employment group at the University of Birmingham’s Business School.
Jason’s main research interest is in the connections between employment relations and HRM, the labour market and public policy. His research has examined the relationship between collective bargaining and vocational training activity and outcomes in the UK and Europe, the impact of the UK’s National Minimum Wage legislation on pay, employment and training, and forms of trade union support for migrant workers. He regularly engages with practitioner and policy audiences and has undertaken research projects on behalf of the Low Pay Commission, the European Trade Union Institute (ETUI) and the International Labour Organisation (ILO). Jason has acted as a technical expert for ILO technical cooperation projects in Turkey, Russia, Azerbaijan and the Ukraine and is regularly invited to contribute to the activities of the ILO’s International Training Centre in Turin.
He is currently researching the consequences of the ongoing economic crisis and widespread austerity measures for employment relations and labour market policy. Specific concerns include changes to employment and social protections and their consequences for firms and workers, the European Commission’s flexicurity agenda, and the implications of the crisis for our understanding of institutional change and the role of the state in employment relations.
Jason is an Associate Editor of the Industrial Relations Journal.

Full list of publications

jshaplandProf Joanna Shapland, School of Law

Joanna is the Edward Bramley Professor of Criminal Justice at the School of Law, University of Sheffield. A criminologist, between 2009 and 2013, she was the Head of the School of Law. In 2013 she was awarded the Outstanding Achievement Award by the British Society of Criminology.
Joanna’s research interests feed directly into her teaching. At undergraduate level, she has started an optional course on Restorative Justice, which draws from major national evaluation of three big restorative justice schemes in England, as well as her work for the EU on restorative justice trends worldwide. She also lectures on research methods, in Introducing Criminological Research, with a focus on the methods and skills needed to evaluate criminal justice initiatives – she has been involved in large numbers of evaluations for the UK government. At postgraduate level, the module Responding to Crime in Europe looks at how different European countries are meeting the challenges of responding to crime, through prosecution and crime prevention, as well as their services for victims.
Joanna’s research interests span the informal economy, business and crime, desistance, crime prevention and social control, comparative criminal justice, victimisation and victimology and restorative justice.
Currently, she is engaged in research for the National Offender Management Service (NOMS) on what is quality in probation supervision, as well as continuing to analyse how offenders stop committing offences (desistance) and writing on the informal economy.
Member of the Centre for Criminological Research (University Research Centre)
Member of the Centre for Well-Being in Public Policy (University Research Centre)
Member of CRISP – the centre for research on the informal economy.

LyuboMishkov_smallLyubo Mishkov

Lyubo Mishkov is an early stage researcher and a PhD student at the Management School of the University of Sheffield. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology and a Master’s degree in International Economic Relations from the University of Plovdiv, Bulgaria. After he completed his Master’s degree, Lyubo commenced his entrepreneurship career through establishing two IT consultancy businesses in Plovdiv and Sheffield. Led by his desire to enhance his management skills, he acquired an MBA (with Distinction) from the University of Sheffield. Lyubo is now working on his PhD in Management thesis: Informal entrepreneurship and tax evasion in Bulgaria. His ultimate research interests lie in optimal taxation theory and particularly interdisciplinary applications of Business Intelligence systems in public policy. Building upon his 7 years of experience in providing such systems for business clients, Lyubo is keen to find out their applicability to serve the wider interests of social and economic policies.

Marijana-BaricMarijana Baric

Marijana is a final year Management PhD student researching the extent and nature of undeclared work in Croatia. Her PhD focuses on developing a theoretical framework for studying undeclared work from a social exchange perspective. Such an approach allows the investigation of both the government/citizen relationships as well as the interactions and networks of the workers themselves. She chose Split in Croatia as her research context as that is where she is originally from. Marijana was recently involved in a project funded by the European Foundation of the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions where the outcome was producing national reports of undeclared work and how it is being tackled in Croatia and 4 EU candidate countries.
Broadly she is interested in social exchange theory and how it can be reconceptualised and used to study a variety of work-based and social situations. Although her work focuses mainly on policy she is also interested in many aspects of organisational behaviour and HRM research.

John Erskine

John is a second year PhD student in Sheffield University’s Management School, researching the informal economy in former coal-mining communities in the UK. His research seeks to understand the importance of informal economic activity for people in areas experiencing economic and social decline as a result of industrial restructuring. The study has a particular focus on ex-mining areas in West Yorkshire, where John has spent much of his 25-year career in local and regional economic development.
During his career, John has worked at a senior level for local authorities, a regional development agency, and the UK Government’s Homes and Communities Agency. He has extensive experience of policy development, as well as programme and project management in local and regional economic development. This has included the management of both UK Government and EU-funded programmes. In addition, John has wider expertise in Planning and Housing policy; and helps teach undergraduate programmes in the University’s Town and Regional Planning Department.

marinaMarina Polak

Marina Polak is an early stage researcher and a second year Management PhD student at the University of Sheffield. Prior to her PhD, Marina obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Management from the University of Sheffield. Her current research is looking at the nature and characteristics of undeclared work in Slovenia, as well as the use of social networks in the informal sphere. She is particularly interested in both paid and unpaid favours and the use of informal networks.  She is very keen to find out how widely people still rely on informal networks to get things done in comparison to other post-socialist countries, as well as the unwritten rules and expectations that apply between two parties involved in an informal transaction. She chose to do her research within the context of Celje, Slovenia as that is where Marina is originally from. Although Marina’s work mainly focuses on policy implications, she is also interested in many other aspects of HRM research.

v_kolevaDr. Venelina Koleva, Research support officer ‘GREY’, Management school

Dr. Venelina Koleva is a Research support officer for GREY Project.  She has MSc degree in Geography and Geo-ecology. In 2003 she obtained her Ph.D. in Soil Science at the Department of Agro-ecology in N. Poushkarov Institute of Soil Science, Sofia, Bulgaria. She has been working as a research associate and expert analyst for various EU funded projects.
For the last 5 years she has been working as a Project manager and administrative support officer for EU funded Marie Curie Grants at University of Leeds, UK. She was leading the overall management  of the projects providing administrative assistance and guidance to the project partners by preparing briefings and presentations of summarized information on various EU procedures and regulations (general and financial) concerning the grant agreement and project management. She was providing advice and guidance on EU reporting, recruitment, training and outreach events organization, financial management etc.

Vitosha Research EOOD, Bulgaria

AStoyanovAlexander Stoyanov


 Alexander is Director of Vitosha Research (since 2000) and Director of Research at the Center for the Study of Democracy (since 1993). Since 1991 he has participated in the design and implementation of a number of social and market research projects in the fields of social and economic behaviour, social justice, corruption and organized crime, crime victimization, supported by UNDP, the World Bank, USAID and the European Commission. The more important long term projects include the Corruption Monitoring System, National Crime Survey, Survey of the Hidden Economy, Eurobarometer and Flash Eurobarometer Surveys in Bulgaria.
Alexander is Professor at the University of National and World Economy Sofia, teaching Social Stratification and Mobility, Data Processing and Analysis with SPSS.

ruslan_stefanov_01Ruslan Stefanov

Ruslan is Director of the Economic Program at the Center for the Study of Democracy. He works on various projects in the areas of anti-corruption, informal economy and governance, knowledge economy and innovation. He has been engaged in research on undeclared work in Central and Eastern Europe, knowledge economy assessment and national innovation systems. Since 2002 he has been the project manager of the Informal Economy Group at CSD, which comprises of 12 researchers and representatives of the public administration, including Customs Agency, National Social Security Institute, National Revenue Agency, National Audit Office, etc. He is one of the local contact points for the Commission’s missions on Bulgaria’s progress on fighting corruption and organized crime under the cooperation and verification mechanism. He has been regular participant and contributor to the DG Employment conferences and seminars on undeclared work since 2003, including on related migration issues, which involves knowledge on the interaction between border police and customs at EU external borders. Ruslan is a member of the team of experts preparing the annual Economic Report to the President of the Republic of Bulgaria. He is also the author of the informal economy section of the annual CSD Corruption Monitoring Report. Ruslan is country correspondent of ERAWATCH for Bulgaria and he is in charge of the annual analytical report He has also participated in the elaboration of the Regional Innovation Strategy for the South-West region of Bulgaria, Annual Reports on the Bulgarian National Innovation Policy 2006 and 2007, commissioned by the Ministry of Economy and Energy, country report Strategic Evaluation on Innovation and the knowledge-based economy in relation to the Structural and Cohesion Funds, for the programming period 2007 – 2013, under contract with DG Regional Policy, as well as the ERAWATCH Country Reports on Bulgaria. Ruslan is also responsible for media presentations of CSD economic research and projects.

Dzekova_01Rositsa Dzhekova


Rositsa is an early-staged researcher seconded to the University of Sheffield during the first year of the project. She conducts research on the informal economy in Bulgaria and Macedonia, as well evaluations of specific measures to tackle undeclared work. Rositsa is an analyst on criminological and policy issues at the Security Program of the Center for the Study of Democracy. Her work at CSD is related to crime, corruption, informal and underground economic sectors, asset forfeiture, border security and home affairs policy issues. She carried out research, data collection and analysis within key EU-funded projects in the area of justice and home affairs.
Previously she worked as an Associate Consultant at the business risk consultancy Control Risks in Berlin and London. She was part of the Corporate Investigations team, where she was involved in delivering corruption and compliance audits, fraud investigations, integrity due diligence, asset tracing and litigation support to clients operating in South-eastern Europe and the German-speaking countries. In 2010 she also worked within the political risk analysis team of Control Risks, where she provided daily forecasts and in-depth risk assessments on political stability, corruption, state capture, organized crime, security and terrorism risks in the Balkan region. Rositsa studied Political Science at the Freie Universität of Berlin. She is currently undertaking a Master’s degree in Social Research at the University of Sheffield.

gerganovAlexander Gerganov

Alexander works as Senior Researcher at Vitosha Research since 2009. His main responsibilities are data processing, statistical analyses and CATI systems. He graduated in Computer Systems and Technologies from the Technical University of Sofia. His Master’s Degree is in Cognitive Science (neural networks modelling of perceptual learning). He has worked on different scientific and applied research projects involving connectionist modelling, eye tracking, perceptual learning, e-learning, psycholinguistics, the study of perception and dyslexia.
Alexander participated as a researcher in the Eye-to-IT project, which was part of the Future and Emergent Technologies (FET) programme under the 6th Research Framework of the EU. Furthermore, Alexander participated in the international project Perceptual Learning – a research fellowship between the New Bulgarian University (Bulgaria) and the Indiana University (USA).

MartiMartin_Tsanov_smalln Tsanov

Martin is Analyst at the Economic Program of the Center for the Study of Democracy. Martin’s work at CSD covers macroeconomic competitiveness, financial flow analysis, energy security, green energy economics, hidden economy and anti-corruption. He began his career as a Research Assistant at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), Washington, D.C., USA where he developed first-draft policy reports included in the quarterly publication of “A Report of the Global Dialogue between the European Union and the United States”.
Prior to joining CSD Martin worked as Research Analyst at Grisons Peak in London (boutique M&A investment bank) where he was responsible for designing the quarterly research publication “China Outbound Investments” by collecting information on M&A/equity and non-equity Chinese outbound investments (including intergovernmental trade agreements and bank loans) and writing the quarterly report documents. He also prepared macroeconomic newsletter materials for proprietary research clients on key macroeconomic trends and developments in the Central and East Europe (CEE) region. Martin holds an MSc in European Political Economy from the London School of Economics and Political Science, as well as a BA in Political Science and International Relations from the Whittier College, Los Angeles, California, USA.

Nadejda GaNGantcheva_webncheva

Nadejda is an Analyst at the Economic Program of the Center for the Study of Democracy. Her work focuses on energy security and energy efficiency, analysis of macroeconomic competitiveness and innovation policies.
Before joining CSD, Nadejda worked at the Delegation of the European Union to Malaysia, where she contributed to negotiations on migration and human rights policies with the local government. While she was a student, she worked as an intern at the Directorate for Coordination of European Union Affairs within the administration of the Council of Ministers of Bulgaria, as well as at UNICEF’s country office in Sofia. Nadejda holds an MSc in European Political Economy from the London School of Economics, as well as a BA in International Relations and Contemporary European Studies from the University of Sussex.

Institute of Public Finance

ottProf. Dr. Katarina Ott

Katarina is Director of the Institute of Public Finance in Zagreb and the editor of the journal Financial Theory and Practice. She is a lecturer at the Faculty of Mathematics and Faculty of Political Sciences at the Zagreb University. Katarina has vast experience in managing research projects in the wider field of public sector economics. Her main area of interest is the relationship between the government and the economy, in particular the underground economy, the state budget, public sector reform and local finances. She is further interested in public sector transparency, government accountability and citizens’ participation both at national and sub-national levels. Katarina is actively participating in a number of civil society initiatives, including the Global Movement for Fiscal Transparency, Accountability and Participation (BTAP), the Open Government Partnership and the Global Initiative for Fiscal Transparency. Katarina is a trustee of the “Prof. Dr. Marijan Hanzekovic Foundation. Katarina holds a Ph.D. from the Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Maribor.

predragDr Predrag Bejakovic

Predrag is Senior Researcher at the Institute of Public Finance since 1997. He obtained his Ph.D. from the Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Zagreb. After that he was a Kingdom of Denmark scholar in Copenhagen, a Fulbright scholar at the University of Wisconsin at Madison and a British Council scholar at Essex and Bath universities. He has been involved in various research projects on the underground economy, the development of the tax administration and pension reform. He publishes in scientific and professional journals and is author and co-author of numerous of books in the field of economy, public finance and labour economics.
Recently he co-authored and co-edited the book “Equity vs. Efficiency Possibilities to Lessen the Trade-Off in Social, Employment and Education Policy in South-East Europe” (Friedrich Ebert, Bulgaria). Predrag is part-time lecturer at the Faculty of Economics, Zagreb University. He is member of the Interdepartmental Working Body for Labour Market Monitoring at the Agency for Science and Higher Education in Croatia, as well as member of the Working Group for the preparation of the Law on Social Welfare at the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare. In 2009 he received the annual award of science by the Government of Croatia.

urbanDr Ivica Urban

Ivica is an experienced researcher at the Institute of Public Finance, employed since 2002. In 2006 he obtained his Master’s degree from the Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Zagreb. His Master’s thesis focused on the decomposition of the index of progressivity of the income tax in Croatia. Since 2008 he has been working on his doctoral dissertation “Redistributive effects of direct taxes and social benefits in Croatia” at the Faculty of Economics, University of Ljubljana, which he successfully defended in May 2010. In 2011 he was appointed research associate in economics at the Institute of Economics, a leading Croatian public research institute. Ivica’s main areas of expertise are redistributive effect of the fiscal system and the impact of taxes and benefits on income distribution of citizens. In addition, he has undertaken research on measuring the unofficial economy, measuring the transparency of the budget, as well as microsimulations of tax, social benefits and pension systems. He has participated in the development of numerous scientific research studies for domestic and foreign clients, such as the Ministry of Science, Education and Sports, the Ministry of Finance, the Tax Administration, the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, the International Budget Partnership, Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, the William Davidson Institute, the Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies, among others. Recently, he has been involved as a member of the Croatian national team in the EU-wide project EUROMOD, an Europe-wide tax-benefit microsimulation model.

Irena Klemencic

Irena joined the Institute of Public Finance in 2008 as Head of Legal Department. In 2007 she obtained her Master’s degree in Law from the Faculty of Law, University of Zagreb, where she is currently a PhD candidate within the Fiscal System and Fiscal Policy doctoral programme. In 2011 she also completed a course in legal linguistics at the Faculty of Law, University of Zagreb. She regularly publishes professional articles and contributes to research projects on a variety of topics, including environmental taxes, non-tax revenues, tax avoidance, financing and tax treatment of sports, civil society organisations, housing savings and the audio-visual industry. She was appointed court interpreter for English in 2011 and translates scientific articles and other documents.

josip franicJosip Franic

Josip Franic is an early-stage researcher working with the Institute of Public Finance since 2011 and seconded to the University of Sheffield during the first year of the project. He conducts research on the informal economy in Croatia and Macedonia, as well evaluations of specific measures to tackle undeclared work. His research interests include undeclared work, tax expenditures and local and regional self-government units.Josip holds a Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics and a Master’s degree in Financial and Business Mathematics from the Faculty of Science, University of Zagreb, Croatia. Currently he is doing a Master’s in Statistical Methods for Economic Analyses and Forecasting at the Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Zagreb, Croatia, and a PhD in Management at the Management School of the University of Sheffield.