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Keynote speakers

Maggie Walter

Professor Maggie Walter’s work is driven by a deep personal quest for equality for Australia’s First Peoples.“My focus is to disrupt, through empirical and theoretically linked research, the often pernicious assumptions that underpin how Indigenous people are represented,” she said. “As one of the few quantitative Indigenous researchers in Australia my research has sought to challenge the established practices of Indigenous statistics which continuously focus on deficit indicators.” The deficit indicators, and continual marginalisation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples across the spectrum of society, is at the heart of Professor Walter’s research efforts. Read on…

Rob Stones

Before coming to Western Sydney in January 2013, Rob Stones was Professor of Sociology at the University of Essex in the UK. During his time at Essex he held positions as Head of the Department of Sociology and Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences. He has published extensively in the areas of social and sociological theory and on their use in empirical case study research. He continues to develop the approach of Strong Structuration Theory (SST), which has been taken up by empirical researchers in many fields. His most recent monograph, Why Current Affairs Needs Social Theory (2015), provides the conceptual tools for audiences for news and current affairs to bring greater sophistication to their interpretations, and was written to emphasize the public value of social theory. Read on…

Deborah Stevenson

Deborah Stevenson is a Professor of Sociology and Urban Cultural Research in the Institute for Culture and Society. Her research focuses in particular on arts and cultural policy, cities and urban life, and place and identity and she has published widely on these topics including the recent books, The city (Polity), Cities of culture: a global perspective (Routledge) and Tourist cultures: identity, place and the traveller (co-authored, Sage). In addition, she is co-editor of the Research companion to planning and culture (Ashgate), Culture and the city: creativity, tourism, leisure (Routledge) and the forthcoming Companion to urban media (Routledge). Read on…

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