I am presently the Convenor of the Gender Institute at The Australian National University, as well as an Associate Professor of Philosophy in the ANU Research School of Social Sciences. My present research includes leading the Australian Research Council project, Gendered Excellence in the Social Sciences, http://genderinstitute.anu.edu.au/gess-home. While much useful attention has been given to women’s under-representation in STEM, this project puts the spotlight on the social sciences, where women often fare just as badly. In some disciplines, including economics and philosophy, women make up less than 15 per cent of the professoriate. Social sciences are especially important sites to examine because they produce understandings of aspects of the world where gender is at its most salient. Women’s limited influence and status in these key fields of research has a major impact upon our capacity to grapple with the social and political changes necessary for progress toward gender equality. The project makes strong use of feminist standpoint theory to provide a complex picture of how hegemonic theories and methods can affect the gender balance of different disciplines. The most recent publication from the project is How gender can transform the social sciences: Innovation and impact (Palgrave, 2020).
In a new book project, tentatively titled Feminist Phantasmagrams I’m starting to critically examine some of the models we have used to analyse gender inequalities, such as pipeline models, unconscious bias and ideal normalisations of 50/50 representation. Although useful, models always hide as well as reveal. This project tries to tease out some challenges to these well-established terms of understanding. I have also been doing some new work in the context of the pandemic on ‘working from home’, considering ‘home’ as the site of gender investments perhaps even more powerful than those at the office.