Liesbet joined the department Department of Social Sciences, Loughborough University,
on January 1, 2009 as professor of media and communication. She is also a professor in media and popular culture at Erasmus University Rotterdam (NL) for one day a week. For more than 20 years she worked at the University of Amsterdam, most recently as head of the Department of Communication. She also held various positions at other universities in the world, most notably as professor II at Oslo University, and as visiting professor at the University of the West Indies (Jamaica) and the Hochschüle für Film und Fernsehen (Germany).
Her research covers a wide range of issues in the social sciences, but all concern the question whether and how popular culture is a relevant resource for civic understanding and social participation. Her work currently is focused on ‘identity management’ and the public and individual taboos and desires around it, research which is funded by the EPSRC. She has also applied the popular culture perspective to religion and received a grant from the AHRC in the Religion and Youth program for research about the anti-Islam film Fitna and the video respons on YouTube. More generally, she has analysed the connections between political communication and popular culture in her latest bookEntertaining the citizen: when politics and popular culture converge (Rowman and Littlefield, 2005), which received positive reviews in leading international academic journals, and is considered an important innovation in political research. She is furthermore internationally known for her work on gender and media (Feminist Media Studies, Sage, 1994), which has been translated into Chinese, French, Portuguese, Serbian and Italian.