Current Events

Past Events

Partnership Signing Ceremony: Western Sydney University and Wesley Mission

Date: Friday, 5 May 2017 (4:00pm - 5:00pm)
Venue: Female Orphan School, Parramatta South Campus

Western Sydney University is proud to announce the development of a new partnership with Wesley Mission. The Memorandum of Understanding will officially be signed by the University's Vice-Chancellor Professor Barney Glover and Wesley Mission's CEO Rev Dr Keith Garner.

The signing ceremony will be held on Friday 5 May, from 4pm-5pm at the historic Female Orphan School, Parramatta Campus.

Associated with the Uniting Church Wesley Mission is a large provider of mental health and other services in NSW and is active in the GWS region. It employs around 2000 staff and is a registered training organization delivering certificates in mental health, disability and aged care and other fields.

The new arrangement will open up excellent training opportunities for Psychology students at Western; advance research and create cross promotional opportunities. The partnership will enhance employment pathways for Western Sydney University Psychology students.

Stories from the Heart: Critical Creative and Compassionate Research

Date: Tuesday, 18 April 2017
Presenter: Debbie Horsfall

How do we enable people to speak the unspoken and the difficult, to tell us about what really matters to them. How do we tell the stories entrusted to us and avoid smoothing out the visceral and emotional along the researcher's way? How do we capture the space of the possible rather than the space of the usual and enlarge conversations for change in policy and practice? And what does it take to listen? The space of the possible is a vulnerable space, a difficult space to inhabit. However vulnerability can enable you to get straight to the heart of the matter, to be compassionately and intellectually engaged with another's lived experience. With/in this space there is the possibility of an open-hearted practice which both enables people to speak the unspoken and be supported as they do. Drawing from a number of collaborative projects I will talk about creating and inhabiting these spaces with people living with complex mental illnesses.

I am passionate about teaching, researching and living in ways which work against domination and oppression of people and planet. My transformative agenda privileges people's voices during a myriad of challenging life events and is informed by creativity, inclusivity, a feminist ethic and a politics of hope. I have over 25 years' experience researching with people from a community development and relationship-building perspective. My work is strengths based and I strive to support people to have a voice, speak out and be heard. This has included working with: Carers NSW; Australian Women in Agriculture; Community Mental Health; The Benevolent Society; the Prime Ministers Youth Action Task Force; HOME Hospice; Cancer Council and the Australian Department of Disability, Ageing and Home Care. The research I am currently working on explores the development of ecologies of care and sustainable, compassionate communities in end of life care and for people living with mental illness or escaping domestic violence.

Is the Water Safer than the Land? Public Representations of Syrian Refugees and the Power of a Warm Welcome

Date: Tuesday 15 November, 2016
Presenter: Professor Uma Kothari, Managing Director, Global Development Institute, University of Manchester


At present, news bulletins, television documentaries, newspaper articles, radio programmes and forms of social media are debating the 'refugee crisis'. They depict the experiences of refugees, document their journeys and arrivals, inform us about the causes of migration, and examine the potential impact on the people and places they encounter. How does this unprecedented media coverage shape our understandings of refugees? How can we interpret and challenge the ideas and meanings that generate powerful, and often negative, connotations around terms such as 'migrant' and 'refugee'? This presentation begins by briefly examining the historical forms and the power of such representations before exploring how current images and texts of refugees reinforce global inequalities or alternatively, might forge new kinds of global alliances. I focus on how certain images can change our dispositions towards refugees, enabling us to recognise the power of a warm, face-to-face welcome in an overwhelmingly digital age. We are positioned at a critical moment, one replete with potential to shape future inter-generational and cross-cultural understanding. In this context, I conclude by foregrounding the politics and power of welcome, arguing that it can profoundly impact on a refugee's perception of place and people, forging longer lasting affiliations and promising the development of a future sense of belonging.


Uma Kothari is Professor of Migration and Postcolonial Studies and Director of the Global Development Institute in the School of Environment, Education and Development at University of Manchester. Her research interests include international development and humanitarianism and migration, refugees and diasporas. Her research has involved a number of funded projects, most recently an Australian Research Council project on International Volunteering and Cosmopolitanism, and a Norwegian Research Council project on Perceptions of Climate Change and Migration. Her current research is on Visual Solidarity and Everyday Humanitarianism. She has published numerous articles. Her books include Participation: the new tyranny? (2001), Development Theory and Practice: critical perspectives (2001),andA Radical History of Development Studies (2005). She is currently writing a book on Time, Geography and Global Inequalities. She was recently made a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences and conferred the Royal Geographical Society's Busk Medal for her contributions to research in support of global development.

Hillsborough: The Truth

Date: Tuesday 25 October, 2016

On 26 April 2016 the jury at the new inquests into the 1989 Hillsborough disaster determined that the 96 people who died were unlawfully killed, marking a major milestone in the bereaved families' journey for justice. It is a campaign that has been informed and shaped by the work of Queen's University, Belfast Professor of Criminology, Phil Scraton.

Phil's in-depth research into the context, circumstances and aftermath of the Hillsborough disaster includes the publication of two influential reports, published in 1990 and 1995; numerous academic articles; and the much-acclaimed book Hillsborough: The Truth. His critical analysis of the investigations, inquiries and inquests into the controversial deaths of 96 men, women and children at an FA Cup Semi-Final in April 1989 was instrumental in the Home Secretary establishing the Hillsborough Independent Panel to review hundreds of thousands of documents held by over 80 organisations.

Film, followed by Q & A Facilitated by Professor Dick Hobbs, Western Sydney University

"There shouldn't be a place like this – we're not bad people": young people's views about, and experiences of, secure care in Northern Ireland

Date: Monday 24 October, 2016

Presenter: Dr Deena Haydon

A child may be admitted to secure care if s/he has a history of absconding and is likely to abscond from any other accommodation and, if s/he absconds, is likely to suffer significant harm or is likely to injure her/himself or other persons (Article 44(2) of the Children (Northern Ireland) Order 1995).

In 2015, Dr Deena Haydon was commissioned to consult with young people in Northern Ireland's secure care centre, to inform the Northern Ireland NGO Alternative Report submitted to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child in advance of the Committee's examination of implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child [UNCRC] by the UK Government.

Insight into the views of young people deprived of their liberty in secure care - about their rights generally, whilst in care, and within secure accommodation - will provide the basis for discussion about how the needs of vulnerable young people can best be addressed in ways that promote and protect their rights.


Dr Deena Haydon is an independent research consultant and a member of the Childhood, Transition and Social Justice Initiative at Queen's University Belfast. Before moving to Northern Ireland in 2003, she conducted and managed research as a Principal Officer for Research and Development at Barnardo's in the NW of England. Prior to this she held a Senior Lectureship and Head of Research post in the School of Education at Edge Hill University, Lancashire.

Deena's main research interests include parenting and family support, youth justice, and children's rights. Her recent work includes a commission by the Children's Law Centre to consult with Roma children and young people, and with young people in secure care, to inform development of the Northern Ireland NGO Alternative Report submitted to the UN Committee in 2015. She has presented workshops, seminars and conference papers for academic and public audiences in the UK, Europe, the US and Australia..

Download the flyer [PDF, 359.13 KB].

HIV/AIDS and Social Work: Modelling HIV protective behaviour from a social work perspective and experiences with cooperative prevention intervention development.

Date: Wednesday 19 October, 2016

Presenter: Professor & Dean Daniel Gredig of University of Applied Sciences North-western Switzerland.

Daniel Gredig is a Professor and Dean of Master-Studies in Social Work at the School of Social Work, University of Applied Sciences Northwestern Switzerland. Currently, he is a visiting professor at the University of Newcastle, NSW. He was trained in Social Work at the University of Fribourg (Switzerland) and at the Freie Universität Berlin (Germany). He received his PhD from the University of Zurich. His recent research and publications have focused on the history of social work, research-based intervention development and innovation in social work, HIV protective behaviour and HIV prevention, stigma experiences of people living with diabetes, and cooperation of researchers and professionals in social work.

Download the HIV/AIDS and Social Work: Modelling HIV protective behaviour from a social work perspective and experiences with cooperative prevention intervention development flyer [PDF, 34.97 KB].

The 'Psych' in Psychoneuroimmunology: Rheumatoid arthritis and other autoimmune conditions.

Date: Monday 7 November, 2016

Presenter: Professor Tanya Meade.


The 'Psych' in Psychoneuroimmunology: Rheumatoid arthritis and other autoimmune conditions What is the relationship between physical and psychological health? In this lecture, Dr Tanya Meade, Professor of Clinical Psychology, will discuss what psychoneuroimmunology research is revealing about psychological comorbidities in chronic autoimmune diseases. Dr Meade will examine the interplay between disease progression, pain, depression, stress and anxiety with a particular focus on rheumatoid arthritis, lupus erythematosus and multiple sclerosis.


Tanya Meade is Professor of Clinical Psychology and Director of the Clinical and Health Psychology Research Initiative in the School of Social Sciences and Psychology. A clinical and health psychologist, Professor Meade's research interests are in complex physical and mental health co-morbidities (pain and depression in rheumatoid arthritis; pregnancy in the context of a chronic condition, depression and cognitive function in older adults).

HIV/AIDS and Social Work: Modelling HIV protective behaviour from a social work perspective and experiences with cooperative prevention intervention development.

Date: Wednesday 19 October, 2016

Presenter: Professor & Dean Daniel Gredig of University of Applied Sciences North-western Switzerland.

Daniel Gredig is a Professor and Dean of Master-Studies in Social Work at the School of Social Work, University of Applied Sciences Northwestern Switzerland. Currently, he is a visiting professor at the University of Newcastle, NSW.

He was trained in Social Work at the University of Fribourg (Switzerland) and at the Freie Universität Berlin (Germany). He received his PhD from the University of Zurich.

His recent research and publications have focused on the history of social work, research-based intervention development and innovation in social work, HIV protective behaviour and HIV prevention, stigma experiences of people living with diabetes, and cooperation of researchers and professionals in social work.

Download the HIV/AIDS and Social Work: Modelling HIV protective behaviour from a social work perspective and experiences with cooperative prevention intervention development flyer. [PDF, 34.97 KB]

Symposium on Older Women and Violence: Innovative Policies, Programs and Practices

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

The aim of this symposium is to bring together people working with older women in Greater Western Sydney, to network and share promising policies, programs and practices to prevent violence against older women and to build strategic alliances and ongoing research partnerships. On the day the OWN Theatre Group will perform the hilarious yet at times sombre musical production, 'Don't Knock Your Granny', which uses songs, skits and puppetry to raise awareness and prevent violence against older women. You will have the opportunity to hear about innovative policies and practices from leading practitioners and agencies in Western Sydney including: Marnie Fitzpatrick, Older Women's Network (OWN) Wellness Centres; Meredith Lea, People with Disability Australia; Jane Gold & Samantha Hunter, Penrith Women's Health Centre; Lyla Coorey (presenting on behalf of Lynda Andrews), ECAV, NSW Health; Nicole Laurance, Social Workers in Disabilities (SWID) & Denise Beckwith, Silent Tears project; Adriana Volona, Cumberland Women's Health Centre; Louise Sutcliffe, Western Sydney Community Forum; Julie Williams & Beth Collins, City of Parramatta; Sandie O'Neill, Leep NGO Inc, and Amrit Versha, TAFE NSW & Nalika Padmasena, Seniors Rights Service.

You will also meet Dr Julie McGarry, University of Nottingham, UK, Chair of the Domestic Violence and Abuse Integrated Research Group.  Julie will showcase the innovative open access arts based e-learning resource, Unlocking Stories, co-created by older women in the UK.

Psychology Careers Expo

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

The Psychology Careers Expo at Bankstown was run again in 2016 connecting students with local and international employers.


Learn, engage and discover the wide range of employment opportunities available to you ­ once completed your studies in psychology.


Take advantage of this opportunity and connect with the next generation of industry professionals and key academics within the School of Social Science and Psycho­logy.

Public Lecture and Film Showing

Wednesday, 7 September 2016

T.G.H. Strehlow and Movements to Repatriate Knowledge in Central Australia

Public Lecture by James L. Cox

'Mr Strehlow's Films' by Hart Cohen

For more information about this event please download the Public Lecture and Film Showing flyer [PDF, 165.91 KB].

Not So Simple Questions Regarding Gender In/Equality and Violence

Friday, 26 August 2016

Guest speaker: Dr Laura Zimmer Tamakoshi


Drawing on thirty-four years' experience with the Gende, a hundred years of Gende pre- and post-contact history, and studies done elsewhere in Papua New Guinea and the Pacific, Laura lays out a not so simple trajectory of Gende gender relations and ends her talk examining current theories and s peculations on the relationship/s between gender in/equality and violence.

Download the Not So Simple Questions Regarding Gender In/Equity and Violence flyer [PDF, 237.36 KB]

HSC Enrichment Days

Public Workshop

Thursday 18 August 2016

Transnational Social Workers: professional identity, culture and practice

Presenter: Dr Shereen Hussein


Social workers along other health care professionals are increasingly globally mobile, pursuing employment opportunities that combine professional and lifestyle projects. Unlike many other health professions, social work skills and practice include cultural and national-specific elements that might not be directly translated within a global context. Presenting an additional layer to the existing maze of barriers any transnational professional need to negotiate in their pursuit of global mobility. The United Kingdom has actively relied on many overseas qualified social workers to fill shortages in the social work profession especially in relation to children social work, however, with a changing patterns and intensity. The current workshop explores the interface between the need for transnational social workers and the difficulties they face in their professional and personal path, using the UK as a case study. Using national statistics, survey and interview data with social workers and regulators in the UK and Europe, this presentation explores the sources of information and decision-making frames transnational social workers use while ensuing professional and personal experiences. It also addresses issues of socio-political and historical contexts of cultural diversity in host countries and how these are perceived and negotiated by transnational social workers. The discussion will explore the commonalities and difference of these issues within the Australian context. The workshop is designed to be interactive with an opportunity for participants to contribute their views and experiences on the topic.

For more information about this event download the flyer: Transnational Social Workers: professional identity, culture and practice [PDF, 55.42 KB]

Professorial Lecture Series 2

Tuesday 16 August, 2016

Migration and Health Research in Australia: Progress, challenges, and opportunities

Presenter: Prof Andre Renzaho


Australia has a long history of migration. Up to 1945 there was a 'white Australia' policy, which changed to accepting a more diverse migrant pool, including forced migrants (e.g. refugees).There is increasingly a need to understand and cater for the specific health needs of migrants, especially those from non-English speaking (NES) backgrounds, many of whom are not adequately recognised in population health planning. The vast increase in investment in prevention and health promotion may not cater for their needs without their participation in research and planning. This presentation will look at migrants' participation in research in Australia, discuss the main challenges, examine the burden of health among migrant's pre and post 1980s, and explore areas of urgent attention to inform policies geared towards reducing migration-related inequities and further research.

For more information about this lecture download the flyer: Migration and Health Research in Australia: Progress, challenges, and opportunities [PDF, 76.66 KB]

Research Seminar

Tuesday 26 July, 2016

'Migration and Health in China'

Presenter: Wen Chen

Bio: Wen Chen, PhD, is a Lecturer within School of Public Health, Sun Yat-sen University, Project Manager at Sun Yat-sen Center for Migrant Health Policy and Senior Visiting Researcher at Western Sydney University , and joined in NIH Fogarty Global Health Program during 2013 and 2014 as a post-doc. Her research interests focus on migrant health and health policy, especially in health services utilization and health behavioral intervention. Dr. Chen has published more than 40 articles and 6 books (chapters). She has also organized multi-disciplinary research projects on migration health in China which were supported by international and domestic research foundations and governments.

'Forced Eviction of Century-old Brothels and Cinundrums Surrounding Sex Worker's Rights in Bangladesh'

Presenter: Professor ASM Amanullah, PhD (UNSW), Department of Sociology, University of Dhaka, Bangladesh

Bio: Dr. A.S.M. Amanullah is a Professor of Sociology at Dhaka University. He has been involved in more than 100 research projects funded by national and international donors and published more than 120 scholarly articles, books and research reports. As one of the leading figures in the region in applying human right approaches to disease prevention, Prof Amanullah continues to provide insight, and add new dimensions to the research on sex work and sexual behaviours among at risk populations; as well as the human right dimensions of and prevention strategies against sexually transmitted diseases such as HIV/AIDS.

For more information download the seminar flyer [PDF, 162.62 KB]

Crowd Safety and Risk Analysis

Tuesday 19 July, 2016

Speaker: Professor Keith Still

Professor Still developed and teaches a short course on crowd safety and risk analysis delivered at client sites around the world as a bridging course between industry experience and academia. The course takes the delegates from basic understanding of crowd safety and risk analysis in places of public assembly and works through the principles and applications of causality for major incidents. Typical delegates include site or venue operational managers, stewarding and security organisations, police officers, architects and local authority officers with licensing, planning or leisure management responsibilities.

For more information download the Crown Safety and Risk Analysis event flyer [PDF, 486.67 KB]

Workshop: Cognitive remediation therapy for eating disorders and obesity

Monday, 18 July 2016

hands holding a green apple

Western Sydney University is proud to introduce a one day workshop on Cognitive Remediation Therapy (CRT) for obesity and anorexia nervosa. Individuals with anorexia nervosa and obesity have been found to have cognitive deficiencies in the area of executive function. Randomised controlled trials have confirmed that CRT improves executive function in individuals with anorexia nervosa, and in turn it improved quality of life and reduced eating disorder symptoms. We have conducted a trial of CRT for obesity and found that CRT improved executive function (Cohen's d = 0.86) and in turn it helped individuals lose weight (6.5% of weight loss at three month follow-up).

This workshop aims to teach you powerful techniques to target executive function problems, found to be prevalent in individuals with anorexia nervosa and obesity. You will have the opportunity to practice applying the techniques in the workshop, and you will receive a copy of the manual.

Migration Report and Book Launch

Wednesday 29 June 2016

Join Chancellor Peter Shergold for the launch of the 'Migrant Trajectories' Report and the Book, Globalisation, Migration and Health: Challenges and Opportunities by the University of Western Sydney.

The book launch featured in the Blacktown Sun (opens in a new window) newspaper.

Stories of Recovery From the Bush

Thursday, 23 June 2016

The Benevolent Society and Western Sydney University invite you to a photographic and narrative exhibition celebrating the lives of people living with complex mental illness.

The Stories of Recovery research project asked participants of the Western NSW Partners in Recovery (PIR) program how their identity, relationships and experiences of social inclusion are shaped by their lived experience of mental illness; how that lived experience is impacted by living in regional and rural NSW; and what they have found helpful and supportive in their recovery journeys. The project put participant's knowledge and experience at the centre of the research through the use of visual research methods. Participant narratives and a selection of their photographs will be on display at the Exhibition and Research Report launch.

This exhibition emerged from a collaborative exploration of how creative media like photography can give voice to the recovery process for people with lived experience of persistent and severe mental illness. The exhibition showcases photographs taken by participants in the Stories of Recovery research project. The photographs are accompanied by the voice of each participant in the form of a written narrative which is reproduced in this catalogue, together with a selection of the exhibited photographs. The process began with each group of participants meeting for a 'photovoice' workshop where they were provided with cameras to document what was important to them on their recovery journey. Some weeks following each workshop, participants met with the researchers to discuss their photographs and begin the narrative process. The exhibition was curated by Dr Joy Paton in collaboration with the participants and researchers, Ms Amie Carrington and Professor Debbie Horsfall.

For more information about the exhibition please download the catalogue [PDF, 2439.59 KB].

SSAP IT Lightning Talks

Friday 10 June, 2016

The School of Social Sciences and Psychology invites you to the inaugural SSAP IT Lightning Talks Research Showcase. We aim to foster conversations and collaborations across the School, the University, and our communities.

Please see the flyer for programme details [PDF, 99.93 KB].(opens in a new window)

Presentation by Mr Yves Kamuronsi from the Kigali Genocide Memorial, Rwanda

Monday 30 May, 2016

Speaker: Mr Yves Kamuronsi, Rwanda Director for the Aegis Trust

Yves is a survivor of the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi and was formerly Head of Documentation at the Kigali Genocide Memorial (operated by the Aegis Trust, an international genocide prevention NGO) where he helped establish the Genocide Archive Rwanda.Yves's visit is supported by the Young and Well Cooperative Research Centre through a research team involving staff of the School of Social Sciences and Psychology and the Institute for Culture and Society.

For more information on the Young and Well Cooperative Research Centre see links below: