Abby Davis

Abby Davis is a Social Ecologist who embeds sustainability and transformative leadership into all aspects of her life. Since 2010 she has developed and facilitated the course Leading for Innovation and Sustainability to MBA students at the Australian Institute of Management Business School campus in Adelaide as well as online.

Spanning a 30 year career in business, Abby has been a Chartered Accountant with Ernst & Young Sydney, Finance & Administration Manager in the Defence and Manufacturing industries and successfully pitched for venture capital to develop an innovative web application in her entrepreneurial start-up web development business which she recently sold to her staff in order to pursue her PhD research on a full time basis. She has served on various boards and committees in the Tourism and Education sectors.

Abby volunteers biannually with Operation Flinders Foundation, trekking with youth at risk on a challenging 100km Bush Adventure Therapy program in the Outback Flinders Ranges. She is a passionate speaker, blogger and facilitator for community initiatives and workshops that create safe and engaging spaces for personal, social and cultural change around death, dying and bereavement.


Bachelor of Business, Master of Business Administration, Master of Education (Social Ecology), Diploma Company Director, Graduate Certificate Education & Training for Sustainability, Certificate IV Training & Assessment

Professional Memberships

Fellow Australian Chartered Accountant (FCA), Fellow Australian Institute of Company Directors (FAICD), Fellow Australian Institute of Management (FAIM Corp Mgr), Australian Association Bush Adventure Therapy (AABAT)

Thesis Title

Social ecology of death:  A study of Australian After Death Communications corroborated at time of death

Supervisors: Professor Margaret Somerville, Associate Professor Tonia Gray


My research study will focus on how the experience of After Death Communication offers a threshold into re-thinking our relationship with death. My study will be located within the bodies of literature of After Death Communication, Western bereavement theory, Extinction Studies and the Anthropocene. The research methodology will be a post-positivist, interpretive approach to understanding the phenomenology of the experience of After Death Communication at the time of death of a loved one. The aim is to analyse the data looking for any patterns that may emerge.

The social ecological outcome is to raise awareness and understanding of After Death Communication as a normal and common human lived experience and to contribute to the global movement that is bringing about social and cultural change around death, dying and bereavement to reconnect us with death; the social ecology of death.


2013 – Dean's Medal for Academic Excellence, University of Western Sydney

1996 – University Medal, School of Business, Bond University


2015 – Public Art Grant (Town of Gawler, South Australia)

2015 – Community Grant (Town of Gawler, South Australia)

2012 - Sustainability Champions Scholarship (Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education)

Peer reviewed  conference papers

Davis, A. (2014): Relieving Western bereavement through After Death Communication: An interpretive grounded theory study. AARE-NZARE 2014 Conference.

Other Publications and Publicity

Before I Die Wall: Interactive public art exhibition.

Dead curious: My first Death Café.

Dying to know day 2014: What are you dying to know?

Off The Cuff: Speaking life into death. Blog.


Relieving Western bereavement through After Death Communication: An interpretive grounded theory study,  The Joint Australian Association for Research in Education and New Zealand Association for Research in Education Conference: Brisbane, 2014


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