Institute-based Researchers

The Institute for Culture and Society, incorporating the Young and Resilient Research Centre, has a cohort of researchers on staff and a team of Western Sydney University School-based members. Institute members work in a broad range of fields including cultural studies, sociology, media and communication studies, human geography, anthropology, history, museum studies, heritage studies, and urban studies.

Professor Ang's innovative interdisciplinary work deals broadly with patterns of cultural flow and exchange in our globalised world, focusing on issues such as: the formation of audiences and publics; the politics of identity and difference; migration, ethnicity and multiculturalism; issues of representation in contemporary cultural institutions; and urban cultures and the arts.
Photo of Distinguished Professor Ien Ang
Professor Bennett's research interests span the social sciences and humanities, with significant contributions to the fields of literary theory, cultural studies, cultural sociology, and museum studies. His work in literary studies includes influential assessments of the relations between formalist and Marxist criticism, and critical appraisals of Marxist aesthetic theory.
Photo of Tony Bennett
Associate Professor Denis Byrne is a Senior Research Fellow and the HDR Director at the Institute for Culture and Society. Denis is currently researching the history of travel and migration in the Australia-Asia sphere, focusing on the material traces which attest to this history and comprise its heritage footprint.
Portrait photo of Dr Denis Byrne
Dr Fiona Cameron is a Senior Research Fellow. Fiona works across two broad fields: agency of the museum sector in public culture in the representation of 'hot' topics of societal significance and climate change; and digital technologies and heritage collections.
Dr Fiona Cameron with trees in the background.
Associate Professor Philippa Collin is a Principal Research Fellow at the Institute for Culture and Society at Western Sydney University. She Co-Directs the WSU Young and Resilient Research Centre and the Intergener8 Living Lab. A social scientist, Philippa researches the role of the digital in the social, cultural and political lives of young people, with a focus on the implications for health and wellbeing.
Photo of Philippa Collin
Louise's research focuses on the social, ecological and economic sustainability of community-driven housing developments in Australia; on the uptake of housing innovation in practice and policy; on complex adaptive systems theory in urban contexts; and, on the interfaces between sustainability, property rights, institutional design and democracy.
Should-up portrait of Louise Crabtree wearing a black shirt
Ben Dibley is a Research Fellow at the Institute for Culture and Society. His research interests have two strands.The first concerns questions of colonialism and museums; particularly in relation to the settler context and its legacy.The second, concerns questions of the human and the nonhuman in relation to the unfolding ecological crisis.
Dr Ben Dibley with trees and the Female Orphan School in the background.
Professor Katherine Gibson is Deputy Director of the Institute for Culture and Society. Katherine is an economic geographer with an international reputation for innovative research on economic transformation and over 30 years’ experience of working with communities to build resilient economies.
Profile photo of Professor Katherine Gibson
Professor Gay Hawkins is a Researcher and Director of Engagement at ICS. Gay is recognised for research in three distinct areas: the relations between culture and governance, environmental humanities, and economic sociology, markets and materiality.
Profile photo of Professor Gay Hawkins
Stephen Healy is a Senior Research Fellow at ICS. His research has concentrated on the relationship between economy, subjectivity and the enactment of new econo-socialities exploring various topics: health care reform policy, cooperative and regional development, and the solidarity economy movement.
Photo of Dr Stephen Healy
Professor Bob Hodge has many active research interests: in analytic and conceptual toolkits for social and cultural research, in major theoretical traditions in humanities and social sciences, in radical transdisciplinarity and engaged research; and in specific areas of study.
Professor Bob Hodge with trees and the Female Orphan School in the background.
Professor Heather A, Horst is the Director of the Institute for Culture and Society at Western Sydney University. A sociocultural anthropologist by training, she researches material culture and the mediation of social relations through digital media and technology.
Heather Horst
Paul James is a social theorist with three overlapping areas of research focus. The first is globalisation and its impact upon social relations, from national community to local community. The second is social change and the human condition, including the impact of modernisation on customary and traditional ways of being. The third is sustainability with an emphasis on sustainable urbanisation. These areas of focus are integrated through an approach to social theory called 'engaged theory', encompassing questions of social formation, social integration and ontological tension.
Portrait photo of Professor Paul James
Liam Magee is an Associate Professor at ICS. Liam's principal research interests focus on the application of social methods and information technology to the areas of urban development and sustainability.
Photo of Dr Liam Magee
Donald McNeill is Professor of Urban and Cultural Geography. His work is located at the intersection of human geography, economic sociology, spatial planning, and urban design and architecture, with a particular interest in the political and cultural economy of globalisation and cities.
Portrait photo of Professor Donald McNeill
Professor Brett Neilson’s research and writing aim to provide alternative ways of conceiving globalisation, with particular emphasis upon its social and cultural dimensions.
Brett Neilson
Greg’s research is in the intersecting areas of youth, ethnicity and gender; everyday multiculturalism; migration and diaspora; Bourdieusian theory; cultural pedagogies and habit; and multicultural education.
Associate Professor Greg Noble with trees and the Female Orphan School in the background.
Jamie Peck is Canada Research Chair in Urban & Regional Political Economy and Professor of Geography at the University of British Columbia, Canada, and Global Professorial Fellow at the Institute for Culture and Society at WSU. With long-term research interests in geographical political economy, labor studies, and critical studies of statecraft, Peck’s current research is focused on the historical geographies of neoliberalization and the political-economic transformation of South China.
Professor Jamie Peck
Emma Power is a Senior Research Fellow at ICS. Emma’s programme of research is concerned with urban living and the politics of care. It envisions a world of more caring and just cities, asking how cities can better support human life and the practice of care through studies of housing systems and governance, urban planning and cultures of home.
Emma Power
David Rowe is Emeritus Professor of Cultural Research at ICS. David's research focus is Sociology of Culture; Cultural, Media, Sport and Leisure Studies.
Photo of Emeritus Professor David Rowe
Professor Tim Rowse is a former Professorial Fellow in the School of Humanities and Communication Arts and is Emeritus Professor in the Institute for Culture and Society. Tim's research focus is Australian history - particularly the indigenous, colonial story; and twentieth century Australian history.
Professor Tim Rowse with trees and the Female Orphan School in the background.
Eric Sidoti is Vice-Chancellor’s Fellow and Adjunct Professor. His interest is in public policy driven by engaged research focusing on democracy, human rights and civil society with an emphasis on policy development in parliamentary democracy and democratic institutions.
Eric Sidoti
Manfred B. Steger is Professor of Global and Transnational Sociology at the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa and Global Professorial Fellow at the Institute of Culture & Society at Western Sydney University. Manfred's research focus is globalization; social and political theory; political sociology; and ideologies.
Photo of Manfred B. Steger
Professor Deborah Stevenson is a sociologist with research interests in arts and cultural policy, cities and urban life, and the role of gender in shaping creative practice and cultural consumption.
Profile photo of Professor Deborah Stevenson.
Malini Sur is a Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Culture and Society and teaches anthropology at Western Sydney University. Her research addresses three lines of inquiry – agrarian borders, urban space and environment.
Profile photo of Dr Malini Sur
Teresa Swist is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Institute for Culture and Society. She is part of the Young and Well Cooperative Research Centre's Safe and Well Online project (researching social communications in the promotion of young people's safety and wellbeing).
Photo of Teresa Swist
Amanda Third is a Professor at ICS and Co-Director of the Young and Resilient Strategic Research Initiative. Her research focuses on the socio-cultural dimensions of young people's technology use, with particular emphases on children's rights in the digital age, the intergenerational dynamics shaping technology practice, and vulnerable young people's technological engagements.
Profile photo of Amanda Third
Dr Jessica K Weir is a Senior Research Fellow at ICS. Jessica's research focuses on socio-ecological justice, knowledge practices, and public sector governance.
Shoulder-up image of Jessica Weir in a white shirt and necklace
Dr Alexandra Wong is a Research Fellow at ICS. Alexandra's research focuses on three areas of interests: creative cities and cultural policies, migration and multiculturalism, urban studies and sustainable development.
Portrait photo of Alexandra Wong