Current research students
Katie’s journey to date has included experiences of working as a social worker, child rights advocate and public policy officer. She has combined this work experience with life experiences including travelling and living in different cultures, becoming a mother and a passion for yoga. She currently works as a Senior Policy Officer with the Department for Child Protection in Western Australia.
Katie’s research topic, Contemporary yoga practice and the universality of a human rights culture – linking practice with theory, is the culmination of personal experiences of growth and transformation while completing a Masters of Human Rights at the CHRE and practising yoga with dedication. Katie has an interest in alternative cultural understandings of human rights to the more normative western legal understanding. Her fascination with alternatives to universal expressions of human rights stems from the idea that to be of meaning to humanity, human rights need to be understood in the everyday interactions between individuals and communities.
Misty is a passionate advocate, with a strong belief in inclusion.
Misty has over 10 years of experience in community and organisational development across the private, public, and community sectors. This has included major social change work and advocacy for people at risk of social isolation/exclusion, and organisational transformation projects such as developing change management frameworks, leadership development programs, and communications strategies.
Misty holds a Bachelor of Psychology and a Master of Human Rights, and is currently working toward a PhD exploring the experiences of non-monosexual/non-binary individuals in the context of recognition in Australia.
Gerard Gill has recently submitted his PhD, having completed his Masters in 2010, and a double bachelor’s degree in Politics and Film in 2008. He studied what effect the increasing use of Information and Communication Technologies (ie. social media) may have on the power relations between governments and activists. He is also the Human Rights and Development Network coordinator at Amnesty International WA, where he is seeking to strengthen ties between NGOs in the Perth community.
Susie Latham’s thesis is titled Contested ground: Australian perceptions of Muslim women. She will analyse the Australian media’s depiction of Muslim women and compare this with information gathered through interviews with women across the generations in a traditional village in the Islamic Republic of Iran. She has visited Iran four times and became interested in researching this area when she noticed the women in the village seemed happier than her friends in Australia despite their traditional roles and poor amenities.
Susie has been an adjunct research associate with the Centre since 2008 and is co-author of Human Rights Overboard: Seeking asylum in Australia, which won the 2008 Australian Human Rights Commission award for non-fiction. Susie has a background as a volunteer migration agent and workplace union representative.
Anita commenced full time PhD studies in 2015, and her topic is exploring refugee women’s perspectives on settlement and empowerment in WA using photovoice. She enjoys research which is participatory and seeks to address issues of social justice, with specific interests in forced migration and supporting the rights of refugees and people seeking asylum.
Anita has more than ten years of experience in research, evaluation and community related work. Since commencing her PhD she has undertaken sessional academic roles at the Centre for Human Rights Education and in the International Health Programme in the School of Nursing, Midwifery and Paramedicine. She has previously completed a Master of Human Rights degree. Her PhD is being conducted through the International Health Programme at Curtin with Associate Supervision through the Centre for Human Rights Education.
Rosemary Sayer is a writer and former journalist. She has written three non-fiction books and published a number of journal and newspaper articles. Her latest book More to the story – conversations with refugees was published in 2015 and this strengthened her interest in refugees and human rights.
She is undertaking a PhD to explore her dual interests in writing and human rights. Her thesis is titled: Now I know who I am – a non-refugee writing refugee life stories which explores how the narrative identity of people from a refugee background can be developed through a collaborative process of working with a non-refugee narrator. Rosemary is actively involved with a number of organisations that assist refugees and asylum seekers in Western Australia. She serves on the board of the Edmund Rice Centre, a not for profit organisation that helps people from refugee and other migrant backgrounds as well as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island people. She also works as a sessional lecturer and tutor in Refugee Rights and has also worked as a research assistant at the Centre for Human Rights Education.
Saqib Sharif is an anthropologist who has worked with different communities in remote areas for over 15 years on social and cultural aspects of human life while living with vulnerable people and addressing a wide range of issues. His PhD thesis would be a qualitative ethnographic account of migrant smuggling in Pakistan. Under a holistic approach, Saqib is discovering underline anatomy of human smuggling that has put migrants’ lives at risk on a largescale who are either attracted or constrained to adopt unsafe migration practices. This important research will unfold community narrative and help understanding the reasons behind migrant smuggling from a developing part of the world to developed countries. Saqib is focusing on myths, notions and fascination associated with migrant smuggling, as perceived and followed by the people living in the areas of high incidence.
Saqib holds a couple of advanced degrees in anthropology (MPhil and MSc), a bachelor in sociology and a postgraduate diploma in information technology. As part of his professional assignments and research activities, he has rich experience of working with United Nations, philanthropy, national and international (governmental and non-governmental) organisations.
Greg Watson commenced his PhD at the end of January 2011. His provisional thesis title was: “Fair Go, Australia!” When the fair go and social inclusion are constructed through dialogue. The research examined Human Libraries, an activist response to prejudice and intolerance via conversation, as a means of focusing on relational aspects of social inclusion and how this may be used to create a more inclusive society within the context of the Australian fair go. Greg chose the Centre for Human Rights Education to pursue his PhD research due to its reputation for an approach to human rights issues shaped by a passion for activism and a strong commitment to rigorous theoretical development. Greg believed the Centre supported his efforts to bring about research outcomes that support the activist work of Human Libraries and offer significant intellectual development to its theoretical foundations and framework.
Greg completed his PhD in 2015 and has since graduated with his doctorate degree.
Yirga’s PhD work investigated the policy priorities of the Ethiopian education system in light of the views, values and experiences of Ethiopian students and their communities. Using observational, dialogical, and archival data from Ethiopia, the study analyses how the interplay of contradictory meanings enacted through the message systems of tradition and modern education support power relations in the country. The study titled Pedagogising Traditions: Knowledge and the Purpose of Education in Ethiopia will provide fresh insights into the purpose and relevance of modern education in Ethiopia. It will also increase our understanding of how forces of globalisation cut through traditional and cultural spaces using the formal channels of the state, and what realities this process holds for people in places like Ethiopia. Yirga completed his Bachelor of Laws at Addis Ababa University in Ethiopia, and Master of Human Rights at Curtin University’s Centre for Human Rights Education. He has significant experience from working with non-government organisations that work to empower young people in Ethiopia and was a Law lecturer at Unity University College in Addis Ababa.
Yirga completed his PhD in 2015 and has since graduated with his doctorate degree.