A STUDENT who grew up in poverty in Brazil has been commended for research into homelessness.

Bruno De Oliveira, who studies at the University of Brighton, said he was “not the typical academic” after winning praise at the prestigious Emerald Literati Awards.

He said: “I was born in an impoverished neighbourhood in Brazil and I came to the UK in my early twenties and had to take the access route to university.

“I had lecturers that made me fall in love with the social sciences and interrogation of society. I thought ‘that is what I want to do, I want to be an academic’.”

Mr De Oliveira’s paper, Challenging Homelessness Through Participatory Action Research, argued homeless people should be involved in academic research to challenge “prevailing” ideas about them.