Charles Sturt University
Charles Sturt University


  • English
  • History and Politics
  • Philosophy
  • Social Work and Human Services
  • Sociology
  • Applied Ethics and Philosophy

Research in English

Members of the English Discipline at Charles Sturt University conduct research into diverse literary forms, incorporating various theoretical and critical approaches. Faculty are committed to a broad range of intellectual and creative projects with special focus on Australian Literature, Children's Literature, Literary Theory, and Creative Writing. For information about specific staff research interests and possible areas of Masters of PhD supervision, please see our individual staff pages.

Areas of research expertise include: Australian literature; Australian children's literature and picture books; colonial and postcolonial writing; pacific literature; literary theory; feminist thought; LGBTI texts and queer theory; literature and ethics; semiotics, semiology, and meaning making; literary education(s); literature and philosophy; literature and theology; creative writing and publishing; Australian poetry and poetics; popular culture; Victorian literature and the 19th Century.

English literature research at Charles Sturt University often has practical links and outcomes. The discipline includes members who are published poets, writers, and/or judges of awards (e.g. The Prime Minister's Literary Award). The University's warm relationship with Booranga Writers' Centre (Wagga Wagga) means that a wide variety of literary practitioners visit the campus each year for residencies, workshops, and readings. The English discipline helps to publish the journal fourW which has been running for almost 25 years and includes contemporary short stories and poetry from Australia and across the globe. Researchers from English at Charles Sturt University have also taken part in readings and panels at writers' festivals around the country.

For more information about pursuing postgraduate studies by research in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, see the Faculty of Arts and Education's Research webpages.

Selected Publications

Research in History and Politics

The history/politics staff at Charles Sturt University have a diverse range of research and postgraduate supervision interests and expertise, which are detailed in individual staff profiles. Our research specialisations include:

  • Social History
  • Imperial and Colonial History
  • Political and Public Policy History
  • Indigenous History
  • Cultural History
  • Biographical History

The history/politics staff publish in a wide variety of media and academic journals. They also serve on many professional committees, journals and editorial boards, actively contribute to local, national and international organisations and make valuable contributions to the rural and regional communities and professions CSU serves. Our research continues to attract a wide range of research partnerships and RHD students and we welcome opportunities to discuss future research collaborations.

For more information about pursuing postgraduate studies by research in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, see the Faculty of Arts and Education's Research webpages.

Selected Publications

  • O'Sullivan, D. (In Press). Indigenous health: power, politics and citizenship. Melbourne: Australian Scholarly Publishing.
  • Bishop, R., O'Sullivan, D., Berryman, M. (2010). Scaling up education reform: addressing the politics of disparity. Wellington. NZCER Press.
  • Van Duinen, J. 'Bodyline, the British World and the Evolution of an Australian National Identity', International Journal of the History of Sport 32, 2 (2015): 250-64.
  • Van Duinen, J. 'The Borderlands of the British World', Journal of Colonialism and Colonial History 15, 1 (2014). DOI: 10.1353/cch.2014.0008.

Research in Philosophy

The philosophy discipline at Charles Sturt University consists of the following people:

Wylie Breckenridge

DPhil, Oxford, 2007

Primary research interests: Philosophy of Language; Epistemology; Metaphysics; Philosophy of Mind

Representative publications:

  • Visual Experience: A Semantic Approach (OUP, Forthcoming).
  • 'Arbitrary Reference' (with Ofra Magidor), Philosophical Studies (2012).
Tom Campbell (Emeritus)

PhD, University of Glasgow, 1970

Primary research interests: Political and Legal Philosophy; Business Ethics; Human Rights

Representative publications:

  • Human Rights: A Democratic Way", Archiv fur Rechts und Sozialphilosophy, 146 (2015) 105-119.
  • "The Australian Human Rights (Parliamentary Scrutiny) Act 2011: A Preliminary Assessment", University of Queensland Law Journal 34:1 (2015) 7-27 (with Stephen Morris).
  • "Is Democracy a Human Right?", 29(1) International Journal of Applied Philosophy (2015) 7-27.

Steve Clarke

PhD, Monash University, 1995

Primary research interests: Applied Philosophy, Bioethics, Cognitive Science of Religion, Moral Psychology, Philosophy of Science

Representative publications:

  • The Justification of Religious Violence, Malden MA, Wiley-Blackwell, 2014. pp. xii & 259.
  • 'The Reversal Test, Status Quo Bias and Opposition to Human Cognitive Enhancement', Canadian Journal of Philosophy, 2016, 46 (3), pp. 369-386.
  • 'A Prospect Theory Approach to Understanding Conservatism', Philosophia, 2017, 45, (2), pp. 551-568.

Daniel Cohen

PhD, Australian National University, 2007

Primary research interests: Ethical Theory; Metaphysics

Representative publications:

  • 'Decision Theory for Agents with Incomplete Preferences' (co-authored with Toby Handfield and Adam Bales). Australasian Journal of Philosophy (2014).
  • 'Rational Capacities' (co-authored with Toby Handfield). Mind (2012).

Matthew Kopec

PhD, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2012

Primary research interests: Philosophy of Science, Epistemology, Philosophy of Race, Environmental Ethics

Representative Publications:

  • 'A Pluralistic Account of Epistemic Rationality', Synthese (forthcoming).
  • 'Game Theory and the Self-Fulfilling Climate Tragedy', Environmental Values (2017).
  • 'Clines, Clusters, and Clades in the Race Debate', Philosophy of Science (2014).

Morgan Luck

PhD, University of Nottingham, 2007

Primary research interests: Philosophy of Religion; Ethics in Virtual Environments

Representative publications:

  • Philosophical Explorations of New and Alternative Religious Movements (Ashgate 2012).
  • 'Incommensurability, slight pains and God' International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 75/2 (2014).
  • 'The Gamer's Dilemma: An analysis of the arguments for the moral distinction between virtual murder and virtual paedophilia'. Ethics and Information Technology 11/1 (2009).

Doug McConnell

PhD, Macquarie University, 2014

Primary research interests: Moral psychology, applied philosophy, bioethics

Selected publications:

  • McConnell, D. (2016). Narrative self-constitution and recovery from addiction, American Philosophical Quarterly 53, 307-322. ​
  • McConnell, D., Kennett, J. (2016). Reasons, reflection, and repugnance. In S. Clarke and A. Giubilini (Eds.), The Ethics of Human Enhancement: Understanding the Debate. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Graeme McLean

DPhil, Oxford, 1989

Primary research interests: Epistemology; Philosophy of Religion; Applied Ethics

Representative publications:

  • 'Antipathy to God', Sophia (2014).
  • 'The futility of our minds', The St. Marks Review (2014).
  • 'The Problem of Euthanasia', The Review of Practical Philosophy (Guangzhou, China) (in press).

Emma Rush

PhD, University of Melbourne, 2005

Primary research interests: Environmental Ethics; Ethics in Public Life (especially regarding the sexualisation of children); Professional Ethics.

Representative publications:

  • Rush, E. and Anscombe, A.W. (2017) 'What can we do to make changes? – Virginia (Ginni) Hall, AO'. In Pawar, M., Hugman, R., Alexandra, A. and Anscombe, A. W. (Eds.), Empowering Social Workers, Springer, Singapore, pp.87-99.
  • Fine, C. and Rush, E. (2016) "Why does all the girls have to buy pink stuff?" The ethics and science of the gendered toy marketing debate', Journal of Business Ethics (Online First), doi:10.1007/s10551-016-3080-3.
  • Rush, E. (2015) 'A Gaitan account of environmental ethics', Environmental Ethics, vol. 37, no. 2 (Summer), pp. 187-206.

Suzanne Uniacke

PhD, Sydney University, 1992

Primary research interests: Applied Philosophy, Ethics, Philosophy of Law, Political and Social Philosophy

Representative publications:

  • 'Criminalising Unknowing Defence', Journal of Applied Philosophy (published on- line ahead of print December 2015).
  • 'Responsibility, Expertise and Trust: Institutional Ethics Committees and Science', Humana.mente: Journal of Philosophical Studies, 28 (2015): 169-185.
  • 'Self-Defence, Just War, and a Reasonable Prospect of Success', in Helen Frowe and Gerald Lang (eds.), How We Fight (Oxford University Press, 2014).

Research Grants

Current National and International Competitive Research
Grants Awarded To Centre Members

Dr. S Clarke; Prof J Kennett; Prof J Savulescu
ARC Discovery Grant
Conscience and conscientious objection in health care

2015: $98,000.00

2016: $110,300.00

2017: $125,000.00

Total: $333,300.00

Administering Institution: Charles Sturt University

Project Summary

Medical professionals sometimes decline to provide particular forms of safe, beneficial and legal health care, on the grounds that provision would go against their consciences. Bioethicists and policy makers have failed to identify legitimate limits to the scope of appeals to conscientious objection in health care. This is in large part because the underlying concept ''conscience" is unclear. This project aims to advance bioethical debate by producing a philosophically and psychologically informed analysis of conscience, and by applying this to discussions about the legitimate limits to conscientious objection in health care. It is expected to result in academic and non-academic publications and enable improvements to Australian health care policy.

Research in Social Work and Human Services


Guided by the vision and mission of Faculty of Arts and Education and the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, the Charles Sturt University Social Work and Human Services discipline aims to undertake a broad range of research activities that contribute to social justice, human rights and well being; and be a leading researcher in the social work and human services sector, as reflected in our vision statement:

Informed action for social justice and human rights.

CSU Social Work and Human Services research scholars are committed to discovery and dissemination of knowledge that:

  • enhances the well-being of individuals, families, communities at local, regional, national and international levels by focusing on human dignity and worth, human relationships and environmental sustainability;
  • helps to understand and address complex human needs and problems, with a human rights perspective, in dynamic contemporary contexts – local-global, societal and ecological;
  • influences the formulation and implementation of effective and efficient policies, plans and programs that address social and economic inequalities at local and global levels;
  • informs and improves their educational approaches/models, learning and teaching and professional practice and development.

Some areas of expertise, doctoral supervision and recent publications:

  • Cross-cultural issues
  • Ecological social work
  • Ethics, theory and philosophy of social work
  • Disability
  • Gender
  • Gerontology and healthy ageing
  • Health, workplace health, mental health and reproductive health
  • International social work
  • Qualitative methodology
  • Professional identity, practice and field education
  • Rural social work
  • Community and social development, social policy
  • Spirituality
  • Evaluation studies

For more information about pursuing postgraduate studies by research in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, see the Faculty of Arts and Education's Research webpages.

Selected Publications

  • Bell, K. (2017). Ageing in rural areas. In Bernoth, M. & Winkler, D. (Eds.) Healthy ageing and aged care*. Oxford University Press, ch.7. *The text was nominated and shortlisted for the 2017 Educational Publishing Awards -
  • Mlcek, S. & Bell, K. (2017). Developing global perspectives and respectful knowledge through international mobility programs. InT. Hall, T. Grey, G. Downey & M. Singh (Eds.)The Globalisation of Higher Education - Developing Internationalised Education in Research and Practice, Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Appleby, K., Bell, K. & Boetto, H. (2017). Climate change adaptation: community action, disadvantaged groups and practice implications for social work. Australian Social Work, 70(1): 78-91.
  • Moorhead, B., Bell, K. & Bowles, W. (2016). Exploring the development of professional identity with newly qualified social workers. Australian Social Work, 69(4): 456-467.
  • Bell, K., Moorhead, B., and Boetto, H. (2016). Social work students' reflections on gender, social justice and human rights during a short-term study programme to India, International Social Work; 60(1): 32- 44.
  • Boetto, H. & Bell, K. (2015). Environmental sustainability in social work education: An online initiative to encourage global citizenship. International Social Work (Special issue – Climate change) 58(3): 448-462.
  • Cash, B., Hodgkin, S. & Warburton, J. (2013). Till death us Do part?  A critical analysis of obligation and choice for spousal caregivers. Journal of Gerontological Social Work, 56(8): 657-674.
  • Cash, B., Hodgkin, S. & Warburton, J. (2016). Practitioners' perspectives on choice for older spousal caregivers in rural areas. Australian Social Work, 69: 283-296.
  • Crowther, A, Kornhaber, R., Velander, F., Drummond, S. & Cleary, M. (2017). Exploring the motivation for body piercing: a pilot study. Issues in Mental Health Nursing (in press).
  • Dellemain, J., Hodgkin, S., & Warburton, J. (2017). Time, terrain and trust: Impacts of rurality on case management in rural Australia. Journal of Rural Studies, 49: 50-57. doi:
  • Duncombe, R. (2016). What system participants know about access and service entry and why managers should listen. Australian Health Review
  • Healy, J., Tillotson, N., Short, M., & Hearn, C. (2015). Social work field education: Believing in supervisors who are living with disabilities. Disability and Society, 30(7): 1087-1102.
  • Hearn, C., Short, M., & Healy, J. (2014). Social work field education: Believing in students who are living with a disability. Disability and Society, 29(9): 1343-1355.
  • Hyde, B., Bowles, W. & Pawar, M. (2015). 'We're still in there' – consumer voices on mental health inpatient care: Social work research highlighting lessons for recovery practice. The British Journal of Social Work, 45 (Supp. 1): 62-78. doi: 10.1093/bjsw/bcv093
  • Jones-Mutton, T., Short, M., Bidgood, T., & Jones, T. (2015). Field education: Off-site social work supervision in rural, regional and remote Australia. Advances in Social Work & Welfare Education, 17(1): 83-97.
  • Pawar,M., Hugman, R., Alexabdra, A. and Anscombe, A. W. (Eds.) (2017). Empowering social workers: Virtuous practitioners. Singapore: Springer.
  • Midgley, J. & Pawar, M. (Eds.) (2017). Future directions in social development. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Pawar, M. & Anscombe B. (2015). Reflective social work practice: Thinking, doing and being. Melbourne: Cambridge University Press.
  • Pawar, M. (2014). Water and social policy. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Pawar, M. (2014). Social and community development practice: New Delhi: Sage.
  • Pawar, M. (2015). Action research on social work. Knowledge creation and dissemination from the Global South. British Journal of Social Work, 45(4): 1357-1364, doi: 10.1093/bjsw/bcv043
  • Schineanu, A. & Velander, F. (2016). Vulnerabilities and abuse. In Bernoth, M. & Winkler, D. (Eds.). Healthy ageing & aged care. Oxford University Press. pp. 160-179.
  • Short, M. (2015). The Anglican Church of Australia and engagement with people living with disabilities. St Mark's Review, 232(July 2): 123-138.
  • Short, M. (2015). Three Anglican Churches engaging with people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. Sydney: Bush Church Aid. Link
  • Short, M., & Healy, J. (2017). Writing 'with' not 'about': Examples in co-operative inquiry In Gair, S. & Luyun, A.V. (Eds.), Sharing qualitative research: Showing lived experience and community Narratives. London: Routledge.
  • Short, M., Broughton, G., Short, M., Ochala, Y., & Anscombe, B. (2017). Connecting to belonging: A cross-disciplinary inquiry into rural Australian Anglican Church engagements with people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. Journal of Contemporary Religion. 32(1): 119-133.
  • Velander, F. & Schineanu, A., (2014), Culturally secure community developmentIn Goel, K., Pulla, V. & Francis, A. (Eds.), Community work: Theories, experiences and challenges. Niruta Publications, Bangalore, India. ISBN 978-81-923326-7-3

Key External Grants

  • Pawar, M.S., Hugman, R.P; Alexandra, A. & Anscombe, A.W., 2014-16. Virtuous practitioners: Empowering social workers – Australian Research Council Discovery Project Grant, DP140103730, $220,130.
  • Naden, N. & Short, M., 2016. Australian Research Theology Foundation inc – Conference proceedings: Aboriginal Evangelical Christian Theology and History $4000.

Research in Sociology

Sociologists at Charles Sturt University have a diverse range of research and postgraduate supervision interests and expertise, which are detailed in individual staff profiles. Collectively, we specialise in qualitative social research that is theoretically informed by a range of theoretical approaches - including critical theory, feminism, Marxism and post-structuralism - and clusters around five specialisations:

a. Environmental Sociology - critical animal studies; environmental justice; governance; water

b. Health - mental health; community well-being; health professions; rural health

c. Law & Politics – inequality; political economy; globalisation

d. Rural Sociology - amenity migration; agri-food; biosecurity; culture; GLBTQ & alternative lifestyles; social inclusion

e. Social Institutions & Work – gender; health & well-being; media; military; science & technology studies; sustainable & ethical livelihoods; workplace bullying

CSU sociologists serve on many professional committees, journals and editorial boards, actively contribute to local, national and international organisations and make valuable contributions to the rural and regional communities and professions CSU serves. Our research continues to attract a wide range of research partnerships, grants, fellowships, and awards and we welcome opportunities to discuss future research collaborations.  You may contact us individually using the email addresses listed in our staff profiles.For more information about pursuing postgraduate studies by research in the School of Humanities & Social Sciences, see the Faculty of Arts and Education Research webpage.

Selected Publications

  • Bridges, D., Neal-Smith, J.  & Mills, A.  (Eds.) (2014). Absent Aviators: Gender issues in aviation. LondonAshgate.
  • Bridges, D. (2014). "Women pilots in the Australian Defence Force: Weighed down by gender discrimination?" in Mitchell J. Absent Aviators: Gender issues in aviation. Ashgate.
  • Wadham, B., Bridges, D., Mundkur, A. & Connor, J. (2016). War-Fighting and Left-Wing Feminist Agendas: Gender and Change in the Australian Defence Force. Critical Military Studies, Published online
  • Bridges, D. Drake, G., North, R., Houlbrook, M. & and Mears, J. (2015). "The 'write' conditions: How to overcome writing for publication barriers through academic development." Advances in Social Work and Welfare Education 17(2), 23-38.
  • Lazarsfeld-Jensen, A., & Bridges, D. (2014). "Gaining a new respect for the other guys: scripted scenarios for inter professional education in paediatric emergencies." Australasian Journal of Paramedicine, 11(2).
  • Lazarsfeld-Jensen, A., Bridges,D., & Carver, H. (2014). "Graduates welcome on-road: A culture shift in ambulance preceptorship made clear through retrospective analysis." Focus on Health Professional Education, 16(1).
  • Burmeister, O. K., Islam, M. Z., Dayhew, M. & Crichton, M. (2014). "Interagency communication of private mental health data." 25thAustralasian Conference on Information Systems.  Auckland, New Zealand.
  • Crichton, M. (2017). "Jack and the DJ".  SoFi: a sociological fiction zine.  Edition 1, June.
  • Crichton, M. and Burmeister, O. (2017). "The ethics of eMental Health in Australia's Western Murray Darling Basin." Australian Community Psychologist (In Press)
  • Crichton, M. (2016). "Endurance: Stories of drought." Rural Society 25(3), 268-270.
  • Gray, I. and Crichton, M. (2014). "Replacing trains with coaches: Implications for social inclusion in rural New South Wales." Journal of Social Inclusion, 5(2), 89-113.
  • Higgins, V. & Larner, W. (Eds.) (2017). Assembling Neoliberalism: Expertise, practices, subjects, New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Sikder, M.J.U. & Higgins, V. (2017). "Remittances and social resilience of migrant households in rural Bangladesh." Migration and Development 6(2), 253-275.
  • Higgins, V. & Larner, W. (2017). Introduction: assembling neoliberalism, in V. Higgins and W. Larner (eds), Assembling Neoliberalism: Expertise, practices, subjects, New York: Palgrave Macmillan: 1-19.
  • Larner, W. & Higgins, V. (2017). Conclusion: awkward assemblages, in V. Higgins and W. Larner (eds), Assembling Neoliberalism: Expertise, practices, subjects, New York: Palgrave Macmillan: 305-312.
  • Enticott, G. & Higgins, V. (2017). Mapping neoliberalism: animal health and the spatial practices of disease management, in V. Higgins and W. Larner (eds), Assembling Neoliberalism: expertise, practices, subjects, New York: Palgrave Macmillan: 171-193.
  • Hernández-Jover, M., Higgins, V., Bryant, M., Rast, L. and McShane, C. (2016). "Farm biosecurity practices and the management of emergency animal disease among commercial beef producers in Australia." Preventive Veterinary Medicine 134, 92-102.
  • Richards, C. & Higgins, V. (2016). "Trade liberalisation and Australian biosecurity: opportunities and challenges under the 'Shared Responsibility' approach." Farm Policy Journal 13(3), 1-9.
  • Higgins, V., Bryant, M., Hernández-Jover, M., McShane, C. & Rast, L. (2016). "Harmonising devolved responsibility for biosecurity governance: The challenge of competing institutional logics." Environment and Planning A 48(6), 1133-1151.
  • Higgins, V., Dibden, J. & Cocklin, C. (2015). "Private agri-food governance and greenhouse gas abatement: Constructing a corporate carbon economy." Geoforum 66, 75-84
  • Higgins, V., Dibden, J., Potter, C., Moon, K. & Cocklin, C. (2014). "Payments for ecosystem services, neoliberalisation, and the hybrid governance of land management in Australia." Journal of Rural Studies 36, 463-474.
  • Masterman-Smith, H. (2013). "Rural workers and environmentally sustainable livelihoods in Australia." Rural Society, 22(3), 196-207.
  • 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, 47, 359-368.
  • Ragusa, A.T. (2014). (Ed.) Rural lifestyles, community well-being and social change: Lessons from country Australia for global citizens. UAE: Bentham Science.
  • Ragusa, A.T. (2017). "Rurality's influence on women's intimate partner violence experiences and support needed for escape and healing in Australia." Journal of Social Service Research, 1-26. DOI:
  • Ragusa, A.T. & Ward, O. (2016). "Caught in the web: Male Goths using online ICTs to transcend rural reality." Communication, Politics and Culture, 49(2), 1-24.
  • Crampton, A. & Ragusa, A.T. (2016). "Exploring perceptions and behavior about drinking water in Australia & New Zealand: Is it risky to drink water, when & why?" Hydrology, 3(1), 8-22, DOI:10.3390/hydrology3010008
  • Ragusa, A.T. & Ward, O. (2016). "Unveiling the male corset: Goth masculine gender performance in rural Australia." Men & Masculinity, DOI: 10.1177/1097184X15613830
  • Ragusa, A.T. & Groves, P. (2015).  "Stigmatisation and the social construction of bullying in Australian administrative law: You can't make an omelette without cracking an egg." University of New South Wales Law Journal, 38(4), 1507-1528.
  • Ragusa, A.T. & Bousfield, K. (2015). "It's not the test, it's how it's used! Critical analysis of public response to NAPLAN and My School Senate Inquiry." British Journal of Sociology of Education.
  • Crowther, A.J. & Ragusa, A.T. (2014). "A dose of our own therapy: Using research findings to challenge mental health nurses to embrace contemporary practice realities." Issues in Mental Health Nursing, 35, 756-760, ISSN: 0161-2840 print/1096-4673 online, DOI: 10.3109/01612840.2014.915900
  • Laird, S., Wardell-Johnson, A., & Ragusa, A.T. (2014). "Exploring the human-
  • environment connection: Rurality, ecology and social well-being." Rural Society, 23(2),114-116. DOI:10.5172/rsj.2014.23.2.114.
  • Crampton, A. & Ragusa, A.T. (2014).  "Perceived agricultural runoff impact on drinking water."  Journal of Water and Health, 12(3), 484-491.
  • Bousfield, K. & Ragusa, A.T. (2014). "A sociological analysis of Australia's NAPLAN and My School Senate Inquiry submissions: The adultification of childhood?" Critical Studies in Education, 1-16.
  • Friel, S., Hattersley, L. & Townsend, R. (2015). "Trade and access to healthcare." Annual Review of Public Health 36.
  • Bradley, J., Townsend, R. & Eburn, M. (2015). "Empowering paramedics under mental health legislation in the ACT." Australasian Journal of Paramedicine 12(4).
  • Arnold, B. & Townsend, R. (2015). "Workplace drug testing: a matter of procedure rather than privacy principles?" Privacy Law Bulletin 12(10).
  • Townsend, R. (2015). "Law and the emergency setting" (3rd ed) in Textbook of Advanced Emergency and Trauma Care'. Edited by Curtis and Ramsden. Elsevier.

Key External Grants

  • Higgins, V. & Bryant, M., 2014-16, Social Factors Influencing Technology Adoption in the Rice Industry - Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation, $129,000.
  • Hernández-Jover, M., Higgins, V., Toribio, J-A. & Singh, M., 2017-19, Investigating Drivers of Biosecurity Engagement and Approaches for Improving this Engagement among Egg Producers in Australia – Australian Egg Corporation Limited, $221,000.
  • Hernández-Jover, M., Higgins, V., Woodgate, R., Taylor, M., 2015-17, Biosecurity in the Peri-Urban Area of Sydney: Social Research Study – New South Wales Department of Industry, Skills and Regional Development, $98,958.
  • Masterman-Smith, H., Rafferty, J., Sheahan, M. & Laird, S. 2014-15, Commonwealth Department of Education (Higher Education Participation and Partnerships program - Creating Sustainable Communities theme) $800,000.
  • Crampton, A., Ragusa, A., & Cavanagh, H. 2013-14, Office for Learning & Teaching Grant - Exploring the role of technology in fostering sense of belonging in students studying by distance, $50,000.

Applied Ethics and Philosophy

Applied Ethics and Philosophy are well-established areas of research excellence at CSU.  Research in these areas is mainly conducted by philosophers within the School of Humanities and Social Sciences.  However, researchers with expertise in these areas are located in more than one School and Faculty.

Ethics is a branch of philosophy concerned with moral concepts and principles of conduct, and with critical evaluations of moral right and wrong.  Applied ethics brings the methods of philosophical inquiry to bear on issues of practical concern with the aim of providing insight into these issues and to how they might best be resolved. Every area of philosophy can be concerned with practical issues and with questions that are relevant to global and national affairs, to law, to the professions, to education, to literature and art, and to everyday life.

Research at CSU in applied ethics is grounded in the methodology and intellectual standards of academic philosophy and interacts with philosophical research.  It is appropriately informed by relevant research in science, social science, and the humanities and includes external collaborations, and engagement with the professions and the community.

Research in applied ethics and philosophy make a distinctive and important contribution to each of the three overlapping interdisciplinary research spheres of CSU's research narrative:

Resilient People:  Areas of research include the ethics of procreation; procrastination and practical irrationality; the ethics of medical treatment of vulnerable groups such as children; ethics and human enhancement; and ethical issues in research and in health care, including moral and regulatory challenges of experimental therapies, difficulties facing medical research ethics committees, and conscientious objection in the delivery of health care.

Sustainable Environments: Research examines a range of issues arising from the nature and value of the natural and the artificial environment and our relationship with them.  These include issues of justice and responsibility in relation to possession of, access to, and exploitation of land, water, and other (renewable and non-renewable) natural resources; examination of the virtues relevant to our interaction with the natural environment; and ethical issues in climate change mitigation and adaptation.

Flourishing Communities:  Research includes conceptual and ethical issues generated by the phenomena of war, terrorism, crime, civil disobedience, corruption, and technology.  These include the nature and application of Just War Theory; morality and self-defence; the principles of criminal liability; the ethics of punishment and civil disobedience; the justification of the use of force; the ethics of terrorism and counter-terrorism; and ethical issues of anti-corruption systems and cyber-security and IT use.  Research also includes philosophical issues of belief, intention, language and individual and collective action and responsibility, and their relevance and application in a range of practical contexts.

Research Projects in Applied Ethics and Philosophy

The projects outlined in this document are areas of research focus. They do not cover the full range of research in applied ethics and philosophy at CSU.

Research Activities

Research projects: Projects are conducted in a supportive research environment. A number of projects are currently externally funded.

Publications: Emphasis is placed on publications in international peer-review journals and by leading academic publishers. Outputs also include reports to professional bodies. Click here for details of recent publications.

Research seminars: Regular research seminars are held at CSU Wagga Wagga and CSU Canberra (linked by video conference). Participation by video conference is also possible from other CSU campuses.

Alongside the regular research seminar program we hold regular work-in-progress seminars that provide CSU staff and postgraduates with opportunities to discuss draft work.

Conferences and workshops: We (co-)organise conferences and workshops that involve CSU researchers alongside external participants. These are sometimes attached to projects funded by external grants; sometimes they are designed to develop a new research project by bringing relevant personnel together; and sometimes they involve engagement with members of relevant professions or the public. Click here for a list of upcoming events.

Media engagement: Researchers publish opinion pieces and give interviews in the media on a variety of ethical and social issues. Click here for recent examples.


Please click here for details of our researchers.

Postgraduate study

Inquiries about admission to Higher Degree by Research programs at CSU in areas of applied ethics and philosophy can be directed in the first instance to A/Prof Steve Clarke.


General Enquiries: Prof Suzanne Uniacke

Applied Ethics of Health: A/Prof Steve Clarke

Ethics and the Environment: Dr Emma Rush

Law, Justice and Security: Dr Daniel Cohen

Knowledge, Belief, and Action: A/Prof Morgan Luck