Professor Karen Soldatic

On leave from Western until 2026

Karen_SProfessor, School of Social Sciences & Institute Fellow, Institute for Culture and Society, Western Sydney University. She was awarded a Fogarty Foundation Excellence in Education Fellowship for 2006–2009, a British Academy International Fellowship in 2012, a fellowship at The Centre for Human Rights Education at Curtin University (2011–2012), where she remains an Adjunct Fellow, and an Australian Research Council DECRA Fellowship (2016–2019).

Her research on global welfare regimes builds on her 20 years of experience as an international (Cambodia, Sri Lanka, Indonesia), national and state-based senior policy analyst, researcher and practitioner. She obtained her PhD (Distinction) in 2010 from the University of Western Australia.

Karen is Istro-Romanian, the smallest ethnolinguistic minority group in Europe, formally recognised by UNESCO. Karen's research on Australian society and settler colonialism is shaped by her lived experience of being the child of immigrants: her father, an illegal immigrant upon his arrival and her mother, removed from her family under Australia's child removal policies (opens in a new window) of the time.


  • PhD (Distinction), 2010, University of Western Australia
  • Master of Education (Special Education), 2001, University of Sydney
  • Bachelor of Vocational Education and Training, 2000, Charles Sturt University

Awards and Recognition

  • 2012: British Academic International Visiting Fellowship
  • 2006-9: Fogarty Foundation Excellence in Education Fellowship

Selected Publications

Soldatic, K. and Samararatne, D. Eds. (2021), Women with Disabilities as Agents of Peace, Change and Rights: Experiences from Sri Lanka (opens in a new window), : Routledge 9781138085244.

Soldatic, K. and Johnson, K. Eds. (2020), Global Perspectives on Disability Activism and Advocacy: Our Way (opens in a new window), : Routledge 9780815376491.

Soldatic, K. and Fitts, M. (2020), Sorting yourself out of the system : everyday processes of elusive social sorting in Australia's disability social security regime for Indigenous Australians (opens in a new window), Disability and Society, vol 35, no 3 , pp 347 - 365.

Fitts, M. and Soldatic, K. (2020), Why extended time on Newstart is unsuitable for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians living with a disability (opens in a new window), Australian Social Work, vol 73, no 2 , pp 191 - 203.

Soldatic, K., Magee, L., James, P., Partoredjo, S. and Mann, J. (2020), Disability and migration in urban Australia : the case of Liverpool (opens in a new window), Australian Journal of Social Issues, vol 55, no 4 , pp 456 - 473.

Fitts, M. and Soldatic, K. (2020), Who's caring for whom? : disabled Indigenous carers experiences of Australia's infrastructures of social protection (opens in a new window), Journal of Family Studies.

Soldatic, K. (2020), Disability's circularity : presence, absence and erasure in Australian settler colonial biopolitical population regimes (opens in a new window), Studies in Social Justice, vol 14, no 2 , pp 306 - 320.

Soldatic, K. (2018), Policy mobilities of exclusion : implications of Australian disability pension retraction for indigenous Australians (opens in a new window), Social Policy and Society, vol 17, no 1 , pp 151 - 167.

Soldatic, K. (2015), Postcolonial reproductions : disability, indigeneity and the formation of the white masculine settler state of Australia (opens in a new window), Journal Social Identities, vol 21, no 1 , pp 53 - 68.

Soldatic, K 2019, Disability and neoliberal state formations , Routledge, London.

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