The School of Political and Social Inquiry is one of the largest and most accomplished humanities/social science schools in Australia. It comprises the program areas of Anthropology, Behavioural Studies, Criminology, Politics, Sociology as well as the Centre for Women’s Studies & Gender Research, the Centre for Population and Urban Research (CPUR), the Global Terrorism Research Centre (GTReC), the Unesco Chair in Interreligious and Intercultural Relations – Asia Pacific and the Centre for Islam and the Modern World (CIMOW). The Graduate Program of Social and Political Sciences is also closely aligned with the School. The School provides a dynamic, collegial, cross disciplinary environment that facilitates leadership, excellence and opportunity is social science teaching, research, research training and scholarship.
The School offers undergraduate and graduate courses, honours and higher degree supervision in all of the above programs and in interdisciplinary fields. It also offers graduate diplomas and coursework masters degrees in international relations, counter-terrorism and Islamic studies. The core teaching areas traverse social, cultural and political theory, addressing key contemporary issues such as globalisation, governance, terrorism, collective and individual identities, gender, sex and crime and social, political and demographic changes in Australia.
The School has a presence on two Melbourne campuses: Clayton and Caulfield, and is also represented in Malaysia and South Africa. and one of the largest Schools within the Faculty of Arts at Monash University.
The School of Political and Social Inquiry is dedicated to innovative teaching methods and interdisciplinary approaches that engage students with knowledge and learning at the cutting edge of contemporary scholarship and debate. It aspires to the highest teaching standards and approaches through excellence in research and rigorous external peer and student review. The School is committed to providing a dynamic intellectual environment by fostering critical, reflective and conceptual thinking in students, and aims to enrich their education by adopting unique approaches to learning. Integrating international perspectives into its teaching, the school attracts students from a wide range of cultural backgrounds and provides a uniquely rich and diverse learning and teaching environment. The school maintains an outstanding record of awards that recognise excellence in teaching within the Monash community and broader higher education context.
Research strengths across the School include: Political Theory and Philosophy; Australian Politics, Governance and Citizenship; Crime, Justice, Security and Policing; Gender and Sexuality; Global Change, International Relations and Terrorism; Regional Studies; Religion, Culture and Belief; Social Issues, Families and Youth Studies; Work and Social Policy; Health and Illness; and Cross-cultural Approaches to Mental Health.
Demonstrating its commitment to the highest standards of scholarship in multi- and interdisciplinary enterprise, the School is home to three ARC Future Fellows, Professor Sharon Pickering, Associate Professor Anita Harris, and Associate Professor Suzanne Fraser; a Discovery Early Career Researcher, Dr Anna Erikson and A Discovery Outstanding Research Award, Professor James Walter, plus a wide range of ARC funded research projects.
The School hosts a number of regular research seminars, including:
- Anthropologists @ Monash Seminar Series
- Sociology Research Seminars
The School has a extensive network of cross Faculty, cross institutional, and international networks and collaborations which add to the dynamic interdisciplinary environment. The School also has a wide rang of community and industry engagements which provide a firm foundation for an approach to research and education that is socially inclusive and which aims to make a positive difference in the world. The School’s academic staff contribute to standards of excellence through their teaching, research and publications. They serve as reviewers and editors of the research and scholarly work of colleagues and students and participate in defining policy and the direction of academic activity as members of local, national and international organizations.