Charles Sturt University
Charles Sturt University

Dr Helen Masterman-Smith

Dr Helen Masterman-Smith

BA (Hons) PhD, UWS

Profile

Helen has over 20 years’ experience as a sociologist. She teaches and researches a wide range of social issues including: labour struggles and working poverty, social class and other inequalities, political economy and democracy, revolutions, political organisations and social movements, communities, rurality, globalisation, media, health, environmental justice, and human-animal relations. She specialises in class analyses of these issues employing Marxist, Weberian, feminist and other critical theoretical frameworks.

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Teaching

  • SOC212 Class: Images and Reality
  • SOC102 Social Inequalities
  • SOC108 Sociology of Health

Previous teaching fields

  • Sociology: health, introductory, globalisation, culture, media, family, research methods, social inequalities, work, politics, theory, environment, social movements
  • Politics: Australian politics, international race/cultural politics, political economy, political theory
  • Health: sociology, public health, Aboriginal health

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Research background/interests

Helen has conducted research on the sociologies of class and work since the 1990s. Since 2007, she has linked this work to environmental justice and animal studies. Most recently, Helen has led projects on community building and organising within working class neighbourhoods, with a focus on the links between social justice and environmental sustainability.

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Selected publications

Books and chapters
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2013 Worker citizens and the environment, in Heather Aslin & Stewart Lockie (eds), Engaged Environmental Citizenship, Charles Darwin University Press, Darwin, NT, pp. 35-52.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. and Pocock, B. 2008 Living Low Paid: the Dark Side of Prosperous Australia. Allen and Unwin, Sydney.
  • Keys, A., Cottle, D. and Masterman-Smith, H. 2007 Time Will Tell: A Political Economy of Labour Time. In Kimber, J. and Love, P. (eds). The Time of Our Lives: The Eight Hour Day and Working Life. Australian Society for the Study of Labour History, Melbourne, pp. 205-212.
Journal articles
  • Masterman-Smith, H., Rafferty, J., Dunphy, J., & Laird, S. G. 2016. The emerging field of rural environmental justice studies in Australia: Reflections from an environmental community engagement program. Journal of Rural Studies. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jrurstud.2016.04.005
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2013. Rural Workers and Environmentally Sustainable Livelihoods in Australia. Rural Society, 22(3), 196-207.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. and Rafferty, J. (section eds.) 2013 Work and the Environment Special Edition, Rural Society, 23 (1).
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2010 Labour force participation, social inclusion and the Fair Work Act: current and carbon-constrained contexts, Australian Journal of Social Issues, 45 (2), 227-241.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2010 Green collaring a capital crisis? Labour and Industry, 20 (3), April, 317-330.
  • Keys, A. Masterman-Smith, H. and Cottle, D. 2006 The Political Economy of a Natural Disaster: The Boxing Day Tsunami, 2004. Antipode, 38, 2, (March), 195-204.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2006 Low Pay and Housing Stress: New Evidence from Childcare Workers, Parity, 19, 4, May, 14-15.
  • Pocock, B. and Masterman-Smith, H. 2005 Women and WorkChoices. Journal of Australian Political Economy, Vol. 56, December, 126-144.

Conference papers

  • Crampton, A., Ragusa, A. & Masterman-Smith, H. 2016. Not enough feathers flying. Sociological Association of Aotearoa New Zealand, Annual Conference, Massey University, Napier, 22-24 November.
  • Masterman-Smith, H., Ragusa, A. & Crampton A. 2014. Reproducing speciesism: a content analysis of Australian media representations of veganism. The Australian Sociological Association Annual Conference: Challenging Identities, Institutions and Communities (24-27 November). Adelaide: University of South Australia.
  • Masterman-Smith, H and Rafferty, J. 2013. Rural ‘education for sustainability’ through the Australian vocational education sector. In Annual Conference of the Australian Sociological Association: Reflections, Intersections and Aspirations, 50 years of Australian Sociology. Monash University, Caulfield, 25-28 November.
  • Harvey, R. and Masterman-Smith, H. 2013 The under-development of gerontology education in Australia. In Annual Conference of the Australian Sociological Association: Reflections, Intersections and Aspirations, 50 years of Australian Sociology. Monash University, Caulfield, 25-28 November.
  • Barton, R., Gregory, S., Masterman-Smith., and Moskos, M., 2012 (section eds.) Work and Labour Studies Stream. In Broom, A., and Cheshire, L. (eds) Annual Conference of the Australian Sociological Association: Emerging and Enduring Inequalities, University of Queensland, Brisbane, 26-29 November. ISBN: 978-0-646-58783-7
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2011 Sentient nature and the world of work. Annual Conference of the Australian Sociological Association: Local Lives/Global Contexts, University of Newcastle, Newcastle, 28 November-1 December.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. and Cottle, D. 2010 ‘“A Distinctive Repulsiveness”: the Metabolic Rift between Humans and Other Animals in the Slaughterhouse,’ paper presented at Red, Green and In-Between Conference, Brisbane Labour History Association, Griffith University, South Bank, 6th February.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2009 Low paid employment, Fair Work and class politics, The Australian Sociological Association annual conference, ANU, Canberra, 1-4 December.
  • Blyth, S. and Masterman-Smith, H. 2009 Market interrupted: climate change and social reproduction skills? The Australian Sociological Association annual conference, ANU, Canberra, 1-4 December.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2009 'Green collaring a capital crisis?' Capital in Crisis: Implications for Labour and Society Conference, University of Wollongong, 9-10 July.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. and Cottle, D. 2008 The Environment-Labour Relationship: New Directions for Sociological Thinking and Research, Re-imagining Sociology: the Annual Conference of the Australian Sociological Association, University of Melbourne, Parkville, 2-5 December.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2008 'Being Seen to Be Green: Environmental Policy and Strategy on Trade Union Websites', Unions in the Twenty-First Century and Beyond: the Environment, Politics, and Education Conference, Faculty of Business and Economics, Monash University, Melbourne, 17-18th November.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2008 'Worker Citizens and the Environment', Engaged Environmental Citizenship Symposium, The Australian Sociological Association, Melbourne University, Parkville, 2nd December.
  • Masterman-Smith, H and Pocock, B. 2008 'Working Low Paid In Australia', 22nd AIRAANZ Annual Conference: Workers, Corporations And Community: Facing Choices for a Sustainable Future, AIRAANZ, Melbourne, 6-8th February.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2007 Low Pay in a Prosperous Land: An Australian Story. 25th International Labour Process Conference. Amsterdam institute for Advance Labour Studies, University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, 2-4 April.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2007 More than Pin-Money: Women and Low Wages. Our Work, Our Lives 2007: National Conference on Women and Industrial Relations, 20-21st September, Adelaide.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. and Elton, J. 2007 Cheap Labour: The Australian Way. Diverging employment relations patterns in Australia and New Zealand? 21st Conference of AIRAANZ, Volume 1: Refereed Papers, Association of Industrial Relations Academics of Australia and New Zealand, Auckland, NZ, 7-10 February.
  • Masterman-Smith, H., May, R. and Pocock, B. 2006 Low Paid Services Employment in Australia: Dimensions, Causes, Effects and Responses. In Pocock, B., Provis, C. and Willis, E. (eds), 21st Century Work: High Road or Low Road? 20th Conference of AIRAANZ, Volume 1: Refereed Papers, Association of Industrial Relations Academics of Australia and New Zealand, Adelaide, 1-3 February, 369-379.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. with Elton, J. 2006 Health, Well Being and Working Poverty. Making Research Matter: Translating Research into Health Policy and Practice, South Australian Public Health and Health Promotion Conference, Public Health Association of Australia, Australian Health Promotion Association, SA Department of Health, Adelaide, 21st October.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. and Cottle, D. 2006 Time Will Tell: Political Economy of Time. Working to Live Conference, 21-22 June, University of Melbourne and Australian Society for the Study of Labour History, Melbourne.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2005 Low Income Women's Struggles: The Responsibility of Feminist History. Lilith Symposium: Where to Now? The Future of Feminist History, University of Melbourne, December.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2005 Low Pay, No Pay: Low Paid Employment in South Australia. Poverty: Closer Than You Think Conference, July, South Australian Council of Social Services, University of Adelaide, Adelaide.
Reports
  • Masterman-Smith, H., Sheahan, M., Dunphy, J. and Harvey, R. 2010 Health Education for Sustainability: A Higher Education Curriculum Handbook, Charles Sturt University, Albury, December.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2009 Labour force participation: when employment doesn't lead to inclusion. Is the Social Inclusion Agenda likely to improve the current situation or simply perpetuate it? Commissioned report for the Social Inclusion Unit, University of Melbourne.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2009 Green Hubs Climate Change Community Engagement Program Evaluation: Interim Report, prepared for the Conservation Council of South Australia, School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Charles Sturt University, Albury, January.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2008 Low Paid Employment: A South Australian Snapshot, prepared for the Office of the Employee Ombudsmen of South Australia for submission to the 2008 South Australian Industrial Relations Commission State Wage Case, School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Charles Sturt University, May.
  • Pocock, B. and Masterman-Smith, H. 2006 Early Signs: The Impact of WorkChoices on Work and Family. Prepared for Industrial Relations, Victoria. Centre for Work and Life, University of South Australia, Adelaide.
  • Pocock, B. and Masterman-Smith, H. 2006 Work, Families and Affordable Housing. In Affordable Housing in Australia: Problems and Options. Dunstan Paper 3/4 2006. Don Dunstan Foundation, Adelaide.
  • Pocock, B. and Masterman-Smith, H. 2006 House, Home and Low Pay: Some Evidence from South Australian Childcare Workers, 10th April, Affordable Housing Roundtable, Centre for Work and Life, University of South Australia, Magill, SA.
  • Masterman-Smith, H., May, R. and Pocock, B. 2006 Living Low Paid: Some Experiences of Australian Childcare Workers and Cleaners, University of Adelaide, Adelaide.
Other publications
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2009 [Book Review] Stilwell, F and Jordan, K. 2007 Who Gets What: Economic Inequality in Australia, Labour History, Vol 97, 218-220.
  • Dann, S., Franzway, S. and Masterman-Smith, H. (eds). 2007 Proceedings of the Our Work, Our Lives 2007: National Conference on Women and Industrial Relations, 20-21st September, Adelaide.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2005 Hidden Seeds: A Political Economy of Working Class Women in Campbelltown (NSW), unpublished PhD thesis, School of Humanities, University of Western Sydney, Campbelltown, NSW.
Selected Presentations
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2017 Winning Big Grants, Albury-Wodonga Early Career Researchers Network, 2 May.
  • Masterman-Smith, H., Rafferty, J. 2016 Sustainability Leadership Forum, NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, 7 July.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2016 Our Place Community Survey, Corowa, NSW, March.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2014 Our Place Community Survey, Deniliquin, NSW, May.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2012 Employment and Climate Change, Social Change/Climate Change conference, Parramatta Town Hall, 30 June.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2010 Education for sustainability in healthcare degrees, Deakin University, Melbourne 2nd September.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2010 Higher education and enterprise bargaining for sustainability issues, Trade Unions and Climate Change public forum, National Tertiary Education Union, Sydney, June.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2009 Green collar employment, University of Sydney, Political Economy Seminar Series, 24th August.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2009 Labour force participation: when employment doesn't lead to inclusion. Is the Social Inclusion Agenda likely to improve the current situation or simply perpetuate it? Presentation to the Social Inclusion Research Forum, University of Melbourne, 25-26 June.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2009 Low Paid Employment and Working Poverty in Australia, School of Business seminar, CSU, Thurgoona, 29th July.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2008 Conceptualizing Sustainable Work and Environmental Labour, School of Humanities and Social Sciences Seminar, Charles Sturt University, Wagga Wagga, 27 August.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2007 Low Pay in a Prosperous Land. Low Pay Symposium, Centre for Public Policy, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, 17th October.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2007 Low Paid Women under WorkChoices. Our Work, Our Lives 2007: National Conference on Women and Industrial Relations, 20-21st September, Adelaide.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2007. Low Paid Workers. Australian Liquor, Hospitality Miscellaneous Workers Union National Conference, 15th August.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2007. Low Pay in the Lucky Country. South Australian Council of Social Services Public Forum, 31st July.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2006 Where Welfare to Work Meets WorkChoices: Low Paid Employment. Jobs Australia Annual Conference, Sheraton on the Park, Sydney. 18 -20th October.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2006 Low Pay in a Prosperous Land. South Australian Financial Counsellors Association Annual Conference, West Lakes, SA, 21st September.
  • Masterman-Smith, H.2006 The Shrinking World of the Low Paid Worker. Australian Education Union Annual TAFE Conference, AEU, Adelaide, 18th August.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2006 Introduction to Political Economy, ACTU Organiser Education Centre, Adelaide, 17th November.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2006 Low Pay and Housing Stress, Council to Homeless Persons Journal Launch, Council to Homeless Persons, Melbourne, 29th June.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. and Oakley, S. 2006 Low Pay Project, SA Unions Council Meeting presentation, Adelaide, 21st June.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2006 Low Pay Project briefing, ALP Family Watch Taskforce, Adelaide, 26th September.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2006 SA State Wage Case, SA Industrial Relations Commission, expert witness, Adelaide, 5th June.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2006 Low Pay Project briefing, ALP WorkChoices Taskforce, Adelaide, 27th April.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2006 Theorising in the Public Domain, Postgraduate Research Workshop, UNISA EASS, Adelaide, 22nd April.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. 2005 The Poverty of Wealth, SA Unions: Young Workers Legal Service Training Day Workshop presentation, ASU, Kent Town.

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Professional activities

  • The Australian Sociological Association (TASA)
  • International Sociological Association (ISA)
  • National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU)

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Student supervision

Helen welcomes enquiries from potential honours, Masters and PhD students on topics relevant to her research background.

Some recent RHD and honours students:

  • Mark Adler: sociology of creativity and the community-benefit research mission of universities
  • Marie Sheahan: neoliberalisation of community welfare organisations involved in welfare to work programs (critical discourse analysis) - completed
  • Robin Harvey: gerontology higher education in Australia (autoethnography) - completed
  • Tracey Parnell: career decision-making of mothers who are occupational therapists (phenomenology) - completed
  • Joseph Collins: Gramscian analysis of Australian neoliberalism (political economy) - completed

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Current projects

2016

NSW Environmental Trust, Powering Down: an energy efficiency education project. Environmental Education Program. Team: Helen Masterman-Smith, John Rafferty.

Recently completed projects

2016

NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, Action Matters for Sustainability in Albury, community engagement project. Team: Helen Masterman-Smith, John Rafferty, Marie Sheahan

2015-16

NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, Our Place Program (Wave 2), community environmental engagement project. Team: Helen Masterman-Smith, John Rafferty, Marie Sheahan

2014-16

Commonwealth Government, Higher Education Pathways and Partnerships Program (HEPPP), Learning Communities: Creating Sustainable Communities Theme. Team: Helen Masterman-Smith, John Rafferty, Shelby Laird

2013-14

NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, Our Place Program, community environmental engagement project (Wave 1). Team: Helen Masterman-Smith, John Rafferty, Jillian Dunphy, Shelby Laird

2009-10

Commonwealth Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts, Education for Sustainability Grant. Title: Education for Sustainability Models for Australian Healthcare Degrees. Team: Helen Masterman-Smith, Jillian Dunphy, Ruth Townsend, Robin Harvey, Marie Sheahan.

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