Australian Studies Research Network

About us

Welcome to Australian Studies at UWA.

Research about Australian issues, identity and culture is a notable research strength at The University of Western Australia. The Australian Studies Research Network links multiple disciplines within the University where significant Australian Studies expertise exists. Indeed, our group includes some of the nation’s and the world’s experts in subject areas such as history, archaeology, anthropology, economics and commerce, sociology, political science, ethnomusicology, and art history. We also work with the University’s School of Indigenous Studies and the Berndt Museum.

Our aims

This Network provides a hub for UWA’s world-class research, teaching and industry engagement that is focused on the examination of Australia and Australian-ness in its many forms, in the past, present and future.

This initiative re-evaluates the analytical framework of Australian Studies, seeking to interrogate outdated, partial, or erroneous assumptions about history and culture. Our Australian Studies scholars ask how a perspective facing north and west, toward Asia, the Indo-Pacific, and ultimately the deep history of human movement across the globe to this continent, might contest narratives of origins in the south-east centred upon the arrival of the British in 1788.

In addition, this network seeks to re-orient our ideas of ‘Australia’ to centralise Indigenous histories of life from at least 50,000 years ago, centuries-old encounters with Asia and Europe, and a continuing, cosmopolitan exchange of goods, ideas and culture.  Often omitted from national histories and overviews, we suggest that a view from the Indian Ocean offers fresh insights into the very nature of Australian-ness.

Research focus areas

  • History
  • Archaeology
  • Literary studies
  • Heritage studies
  • Environmental studies
  • Anthropology
  • Indigenous Studies
  • Architecture
  • Economics and commerce
  • Law
  • Sociology
  • Political science
  • Ethnomusicology
  • Art history

Journal of Australian Studies special issue

Journal of Australian Studies, Volume 45, Issue 2 (2021).

Read the special issue

Linked research groups

centre for WA history logo

The Centre for Western Australian History (CWAH) was established in 1985 to encourage the research and writing of Western Australian history to the highest professional standards. Since then it has provided a wide array of historical and archival services to industry, government, schools and the community at large.

westerly masthead

The Westerly Research Cluster brings together leading researchers in Australian literature, creative writing and creative pedagogy at the University of Western Australia (UWA). Westerly hosts visitors and conferences, and publishes Westerly Magazine, founded in 1956.

Contact us