This event has ended. Visit the official site or create your own event on Sched.

Sign up or log in to bookmark your favorites and sync them to your phone or calendar.

←View All Dates
Wednesday, December 4

8:30am NZDT

Wednesday December 4, 2019 8:30am - 9:00am NZDT

9:00am NZDT

Session Chair: Sailau Suaalii-Sauni 

Warwick Tie: Responding to the collapse of desire in the analysis of penal excess

An analysis of early twentieth century torture lynching in the American South by David Garland introduces to the sociology of punishment the notion of ‘surplus meaning’. Garland thereby explains the ‘penal excess’ of torture lynching not just in terms of the excess of pain it delivers but an excess of social meaning generated by lynching events. The concept enables torture lynching to be framed as a populist form of penality used for racist political purposes. Despite the apparent clarity of this analysis, the approach crumples in the midst of a subsequent and seemingly endless proliferation of explanatory accounts. Methodologically, the logic of overdetermination used to frame explanation fails. Affectively, the desire of explanation collapses. A broad theoretical point can thereby made, that the desire central to the pursuit of understanding can be rescued when explanation includes the influence of capitalist (‘real’) abstraction in how the analysis of ‘surplus meaning’ proceeds.

Emilie Rakete: The prisons are full and the cupboards are empty: Social reproduction theory in the era of mass incarceration

The historical materialist method begins from a basic truth: if a society did not produce the things people needed to survive, that society would perish. In societies like ours, riven by inequality between the capitalist and working classes, a key site of conflict is the struggle over just how much it is that people need to live: on how little can the poor be made to subsist? The price of labour-power, the only commodity that working-class people control, has been systematically devalued in order for the capitalist class to appropriate increases in the productivity of labour. In the fight to determine who benefits from this overall social wealth – over who will thrive and who will starve; who will flourish and who will wither – the institution of mass incarceration has presided like a grim cenotaph. By assigning blame for the suffering caused by decades of neoliberalism to those who suffer, mass incarceration has acted as a weapon of class war. The development of social reproduction theory allows for a materialist analysis of non-workplace exploitation in terms of the labour theory of value. This insight makes it possible to conceptualise the political economic role that mass incarceration has played in reducing the price of labour-power, depressing wages, and keeping the working class poor, desperate, and miserable.

Juan Tauri: Challenging Authoritarian Criminology

In 2010, Nigerian criminologist, Biko Agozino, argued that the discipline of criminology is a “control freak” whose epistemological foundations were formed during the colonial dispossession of Indigenous peoples worldwide. As such, the discipline has long approached Indigenous peoples residing in settler-colonial contexts as problem populations in need of significant social management through targeted surveillance (especially policing), geographical containment (in reservations and boarding schools to begin with, and of late via the prison industrial complex of late modernity), and/or corrected through the ‘gift’ of western knowledge in the form of psycho-therapeutic programmes and other, similar interventions. This presentation will challenge core assumptions of mainstream, authoritarian criminologists and members of the policy sector they work with, in relation to Indigenous peoples, including that they have nothing to learn from Indigenous peoples and their knowledge systems about how to effectively respond to social harm, and that crime control policies imported from other ‘high crime’, Western jurisdictions are suitable for all communities regardless of ethnic, cultural, social and historical context.

Carl Bradley: Gangs, Violence and the Shadow Economy

Patched gangs as a deviant sub-culture have a long history in Aotearoa New Zealand. Drawing on the cultural tenets of the outlaw bikers of North America, outlaw bikers and patched street gangs grew to such an extent that they now have a presence in most towns and major cities in Aotearoa New Zealand. One of these tenets, violence sets patched gangs outside the standard characteristics of hyper-masculine groups: violence also makes gangs well-placed to control areas of the shadow economy. This paper seeks to locate gangs in the cultural landscape of Aotearoa New Zealand and interrogate what attracts young men to these groups applying General Strain Theory. This paper also investigates the tenets of gang culture with a focus on violence and the role it plays in dominating aspects of the shadow economy. Future trends in the face of an increasingly international gang landscape will be considered while issues in obtaining accurate data on gangs will be discussed. It is the authors contention that increased economic inequality will see gang membership rise with a move by some groups to position themselves to further control the drug trade through the threat or use of violence and the utilisation of transnational networks.

Each presentation will be allocated 20 minutes. Additional time for questions and discussion will be available in each stream.

avatar for Carl Bradley

Carl Bradley

Research Asociate, Massey University
I research patched street gangs and Outlaw biker culture. I am interested in the persistence expressions of war-band like and hyper-masculine groups. I have also published on indigenous response to colonization from Iron Age Europe through to contemporary times.
avatar for Emilie Rākete

Emilie Rākete

People Against Prisons Aotearoa, Co-founder
Emilie Rākete (Ngāpuhi, Te Rarawa) is a prisoner advocate from Tāmaki Makaurau and a grad student at the University of Auckland studying the political economy of prisons in Aotearoa. She is one of the founders of People Against Prisons Aotearoa.

Juan Tauri

Senior Lecturer, University of Waikato

Wednesday December 4, 2019 9:00am - 11:00am NZDT
206-217 - Seminar Room 6

9:00am NZDT

BREAKOUT SESSION TWO: Gender & Sexuality
Session Chair: Carisa Showden 

Moeata Keil: ‘It really does take a whole village to raise him’: Pacific mothers and fathers post- separation parenting practices

Gender neutral terms like ‘parent’ and ‘parenting’ hide and in many ways disguise the gendered experience of mothering and fathering as well as the collectivised way that caring responsibilities for children are organised and negotiated in different cultural (ethnic) contexts. There is a growing body of sociological scholarship that explores gendered experience of post-separation mothering and fathering. However, much of this literature draws on normative white Western and nuclearised understandings of family structure and the nature and scope of parental obligations and responsibilities within that structure. Little is known about the way that Pacific mothers and fathers, many of whom adhere to a more extended family structure and hold more communally-based understandings about moral obligations to children, navigate and negotiate post-separation parenthood. Drawing on interviews with ten separated Pacific mothers and five separated Pacific fathers living in Aotearoa, this paper explores the way that ethnicity and gender interact and overlap in ways that shape how everyday parenting practices are organised, negotiated and enacted when parents live apart. This paper concludes by arguing that post-separation parenting is multiply informed by Pacific cultural norms and values as well as normative gendered ideals and practices associated with ‘good’ mothering and ‘good’ fathering.

Vivienne Elizabeth: A new form of mother blame: parental alienation syndrome, emotion work and the governance of post-separation mothers

Constructions of bad mothers are both changeable and numerous. They also have a long cultural history in the West. In this paper I examine a recent variant: the alienating (post-separation) mother who is judged to be hostile to contact between her children and their father. This version of the bad mother owes its existence to emergence of a ‘psy’ discourse on parental alienation (PA) in the context of a virulent father’s rights movement across the globe. Over time PA has become an important adjunct to custody law in the governance of post-separation mothers that provides legal actors with a pathologising interpretive frame, results in mothers’ self-disciplinary practices and is linked to their experiences of a range of affective burdens. In this paper I draw on the talk of a small number of separated mothers to explore the affective burdens occasioned by how parental alienation or the spectre of parental alienation shapes mothers’ emotion work. Mothers worked on their own emotions to minimise the risk of being seen to display emotional states linked to parental alienation, helped their children manage their peripatetic lives, and performed emotion work on behalf of fathers at the behest of the court.

Hannah Rossiter: Sport is a Human Right: Transgender athletes the Transgender Question of Our Time

The participation of trans women in sport has become one of the contentious social issues among cisgender and trans communities. It is commonly believed that trans women have an unfair advantage over cisgender women. As I will show in this presentation that trans athletes do not have an unfair advantage, but rather, they struggle to compete against cisgender athletes. Indeed, with Rachel McKinnon winning the UCI 35-44 Master’s World Championship and Lauren Hubbard representing New Zealand in women’s weightlifting, has put a spotlight onto the participation of trans women in sport. Many of the discussion of trans women participation in competitive sport fails to incorporate the 4th Fundamental Principles of Olympism, that the practice of sport is a human right. Additionally, these discussions of trans women in competitive sport view the effects of hormones as having minimal impact on trans athletes.

Laura Schilperoot: Practising gender equality: church-going couples' experiences of egalitarianism and their tools for egalitarian partnerships

Drawing from in-depth interviews with couples attending Protestant churches in New Zealand, this research explores how couples practice gender egalitarianism and examines the social and religious rationales underpinning their behaviour. In the context of this sociological study, ‘egalitarian’ refers to the position that women and men are of equal, intrinsic value and there are no gender-based limitations of what functions or responsibilities each can fulfil in the home, church or society. Drawing from the words and experiences of participants in my study, I will discuss one theme emerging in my data - egalitarian masculinity. Central to this discussion is the trend within literature that shows that men’s attitudes are more likely to influence gender equality within a heterosexual relationship. Following on from this, the women and men I interviewed share practical and conceptual tools they use to enact their beliefs about equality, and I will highlight some of these. Lastly, I will explore how this research is situated within wider, societal ‘traditional’ norms and discuss ways in which the experiences of the men and women in this study might be relevant to, or useful for anyone desiring egalitarian relationships, religious or non-religious. The following questions lie at the heart of this presentation: How do men and women understand and experience gender egalitarianism in partnerships, and to what extent can their practices have a transforming influence on hegemonic gender ideals?

Each presentation will be allocated 20 minutes. Additional time for questions and discussion will be available in each stream.


Carisa Showden

Senior Lecturer, University of Auckland

Hannah Rossiter

Hannah is a PhD candidate in Gender Studies exploring the Transgender communities in Aotearoa/New Zealand.

Wednesday December 4, 2019 9:00am - 11:00am NZDT
206-201 - Lecture Theatre 1

9:00am NZDT

BREAKOUT SESSION TWO: Indigenous Studies
Session Chair: Lara Greaves 

Lizzie Cook: Unsettled Bliss of Cruelty: Decolonising Aotearoa

I examine White domination in relation to the unextinguished sovereignty of Tangata Whenua - the multiple Indigenous entities of Aotearoa. Exploring justifications for that domination, I raise awareness for generating change towards equal power sharing between Tangata Whenua and Tangata Whai (all non-Indigenous, colonial and more recent Settlers) as a parallel bi-culturalism. Rorty described Nabakov's writing as showing how, `the private pursuit of aesthetic bliss produces cruelty'. Viewing `private pursuit' as solipsism, I apply it to
White domination aspirations in Aotearoa from landfall to present day. Using Hayden White's idea of a dominant consciousness, I site how White domination occupies Aotearoa socially, economically and conceptually. From Shklar's perspective of examining vices, I probe the aesthetic bliss of White domination in banal, daily practices that are unwitting acts of cruelty based on the misconception of its own universality that marginalises Tangata Whenua in their own country. The Protestant informed secular theorised by Weber, continues rationalized, puritanical violence post Te Tiriti, generating the 1860s great civil war described
by O'Malley, that positioned Tangata Whenua as 'rebels' in their own land. I challenge White domination claims of Indigeneity in relation to on-going White privilege and superiority and the marginalisation of other, non-Indigenous New Zealanders. Dissenting within this White domination, I develop a Theory of Cruelty that explores White domination repudiation of Tangata Whenua by Negation, Rationalism, Private Pursuit of Bliss, Defensiveness and White Essentialism. Aotearoa requires decolonisation.

Simon Barber: Māori Mārx: Some provisional materials

I begin by following Marx in his search for the proper starting place for a materialist dialectics. Marx’s search ends up, at the close of his life, with the passionate study of indigenous modes of life. I sketch some of the possible lineaments of a Māori Marxism which takes ‘whakapapa’ as its central concept. Whakapapa describes the way in which the world has its being and becoming through the relational and intergenerational reproduction of all things. From this perspective follows an indigenous form of historical materialism wherein reproduction is foregrounded over and against production. I close by suggesting that we must come to conceive of ourselves as part of the ensemble powers of Papatūānuku if we are to conserve the earth whilst overcoming capital.

Tracey McIntosh: He Waka Roimata: Justice Reform and Listening to Understand

In 1988 John Rangihau and the Māori Perspective Advisory Committee's Te Puao-te-Atu-tu report and Moana Jackson's He Whaipaanga Hou report were released demanding urgent reform of both the social welfare system and the criminal justice system. Each of these reports positioned Māori at the centre of the need for transformational change, power sharing and decision making. In 2019 Whakamana Tangata and He Waka Roimata were released from the Welfare Expert Advisory Group and Te Uepū Hāpai i te Ora - Safe and Effective Justice Advisory Group respectively. This paper looks at the experiential costs of a generation of an increasingly hostile policy environment and the subsequent increase in our consumption of punishment. Listening to understand privileges lived experience of those that ' have lived it and seen it all'.

Fern Smith and Morgan Tupaea: He Tamariki He Taonga: Disrupting colonial media patterns about taitamariki atawhai and the capacities of whānau Māori

A rising tide of activism, supported by social and conventional media forms, has enabled greater visibility to the longstanding practice of state removal of Māori children from their whānau. On the precipice of, and preceding this social change we analysed a corpus of print media identifying and deconstructing pervasive representations of whānau and taitamariki atawhai (children adopted or born of the heart) affected by the state care system. Drawing on kaupapa Māori methodologies, and thematic analysis methods, we identified dominant representations of a) neoliberal subjectivities reinforcing colonial structures, b) pathologising, undermining and silencing Māori and c) the ongoing effects of colonisation and the marginalisation of Māori worldviews. This work foregrounds patterns of discourse that constrain possibilities for whānau and taitamariki atawhai, seeking to broaden media representations of Māori to attend to the brilliancy, complexity and resiliency of taitamariki Māori atawhai. Following hui with Ngāpuhi Social Services and VOYCE: Whakarongo Mai, about this analysis, we advocate for media to better contextualise representations of Māori with understandings of colonisation in local contexts. Furthermore, the media can move beyond being a tool of colonisation by validating and legitimating mātauranga and tikanga Māori, as espoused by Māori leaders - informing solutions to these issues.

Liana MacDonald: Cultural memory and photographic representation of early settler life in the Waipa District

A rich account of early settler life in New Zealand is captured through photography taken by migrants between 1840 and 1914. Some of these images have been used by scholars to learn more about settler culture and colonial history, however, colonial photography in settler colonial societies do much more than that. In this presentation, I argue that photographic images of everyday colonial life are a technology of cultural memory. Cultural memory both defines a culture and influences how history is understood; consequently, photographic representations of early colonial life reflect early settlers’ claims of belonging to indigenous lands and supports the descendants of settlers today to view these claims as legitimate. I will present six tropes that emerged from the photographic repository of a museum in the Waipa district, to show how cultural memory is evoked through colonial images and sustained over time. This presentation is based on in-progress research that is part of a large national project, He Taonga te Wareware?: Remembering and Forgetting New Zealand’s Colonial Past.

Each presentation will be allocated 20 minutes. Additional time for questions and discussion will be available in each stream.

avatar for Lizzie Cook

Lizzie Cook

PhD Candidate, University of Canterbury
White privilege, racism, negotiating conflict as a normal everyday activity, bee & butterfly gardens, native plants, potagerdesign, colourperforming artist

Morgan Tupaea

Te Aitanga a Māhaki, Ngāti Kuia, Ngāti Tipa

Tracey McIntosh

Professor of Indigenous Studies, University of Auckland

Wednesday December 4, 2019 9:00am - 11:00am NZDT
206-209 - Lecture Theatre 3

9:00am NZDT

Session Chair: Luke Goode

Luke Goode and Steve Matthewman: Possible, Probable, Preferable: Contested Urban Futures

This paper introduces the Social Futures stream by sketching out a brief history of futures studies and its relationship to sociology and critical social science. It addresses the question: why ‘social futures’? And it discusses some key conceptual and methodological challenges involved in studying ‘possible, probable and preferable futures’ in relation to issues of agency, structure and unequal power relations. The paper will then relate this discussion to our research project based in Christchurch/Ōtautahi. Following the devastating earthquakes of 2010 and 2011, the city rebuild created an unprecedented opportunity for the city’s residents to participate collectively in shaping its future. Initially, the City Council was lauded for its efforts to engage citizens through its Share an Idea process of public “conversations” surrounding future directions for Christchurch. In reality, however, the power to shape the future of Christchurch through policy and practice is very unevenly distributed across different interest groups, communities and demographics. Our research aims to explore and give voice to a diverse range of hopes, fears and expectations surrounding the future of Christchurch among the city’s residents, communities and stakeholders.

Georgia Lockie: Utopia and Desire: Bloch with Lacan

In our contemporary ideological enclosure by ‘capitalist realism,’ a crucial task for the Left is building counter-hegemony. My doctoral research focuses on the counter-hegemonic possibilities of utopia and utopian hermeneutics. Utopia historicises the present, returning us to the plane of history against the eternal present of capitalist realism, and offers ways of thinking the genuinely new. However, utopia is also appropriated by ideology—our desires for better ways of being are captured and neutralised in service of the status quo. The Left’s war of position must also incorporate, therefore, a war of utopia. For Ernst Bloch, utopianism is ontological. He argues, contra Freud, that hunger (conceived broadly), is our most basic drive. The Not-Yet-Conscious—the proto-utopian aspect of the unconscious and part of the ontological basis of Bloch’s speculative materialism—is animated by lack, and its correlative longing. This bears remarkable similarity to Lacan’s theory of lack as constitutive of both the subject and the social, and raises the possibility of utopia as objet a. This presentation will bring Bloch and Lacan into conversation with one another, exploring the implications of this theoretical synthesis for Left counter-hegemony.

Greg Minissale: Schizoanalytic Futures

In many of Deleuze and Guattari’s texts the political economy and the libidinal economy are one and the same. In Chaomosis: an ethico-aesthetic paradigm, Guattari writes: ‘The Freudian Unconscious is inseparable from a society attached to its past, to its phallocentric traditions...Contemporary upheavals undoubtedly call for modelization turned more towards the future and the emergence of new social and aesthetic practices’ (1995: 12). Clearly, what is being mapped here is the cooperation between phallocentric psychoanalysis and the capitalist economy. Perhaps one of the easiest ways to see this is the Barbie doll and Action Man—both consumer products meant to reproduce heterosexual gender essentialism. I argue that for the ‘emergence of new social and aesthetic practices’ to be possible, social futures need to turn away from the authority of the Oedipal past which regulates our present and future actions. Instead, Deleuze and Guattari propose ‘schizoanalysis’, an approach that opens up to a broad heterogeneity of libidinal micropolitics and social relations. In this paper I examine how schizoanalysis brings together aesthetic, libidinal, social and political registers with reference to queer Muslim futurisms. This social, political and aesthetic praxis is particularly urgent in Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand where heteronormative culture and toxic masculinity have encouraged high suicide and self-harming rates among LGBTIQ, with alarming figures for bullying at school and on social media.

Wayne Hope: Conflicting Futurities: Time, global capitalism and the Anthropocene

Initially, I set out the case for a new epoch – the Anthropocene – from a geological and earth systems perspective. Then a critical conception of the human - centred Anthropocene narrative will foreground the relations of power and vested interests involved in rapidly escalating greenhouse gas emissions (including CO2). I will also argue that from the late 20th century an epoch of global capitalism took shape. The globalisation of capitalist finance, production, consumption and communication infrastructures coincided with the globalisation of carbon capitalist footprints. Transnational value chains of energy extraction, electricity generation, production, supply networks and commodity consumption represent a convergence between the earth – human Anthropocene and global capitalism. Against this background, I will consider the complex uncertainties of global climate change scenarios arising from interacting causal linkages associated with a depleted, artificial biosphere, biodiversity loss, ice cap contraction, rising sea levels, ocean acidification, unruly weather and climate, fragile agricultural systems, declining food security, new unequal suffering, social instability and violent geopolitics. My general argument here is that the difficulty of determining these scenarios stems from certain conflicts and obfuscations of time. Thus, the growing scientific certainty concerning anthropogenic temperature rise and greenhouse gas emissions conflicts with the growing uncertainty as to how greenhouse tipping points will play out across ecological, economic, social and political realms. Additionally, concerns about the future of generic humanity conflicts with the need for an appreciation of coeval communication and its denial. In the latter context, greenhouse gas scenarios can be seen through the lens of plutonomy, socio-economic immiseration and the displacement of surplus populations. Finally, I will argue that these insights in regard to global futurity are obfuscated by financial and corporate constructions of climate change risk.

Each presentation will be allocated 20 minutes. Additional time for questions and discussion will be available in each stream.

avatar for Greg Minissale

Greg Minissale

Associate Professor, University of Auckland
Greg completed his PhD in Art History at SOAS, University of London. Research is centred on Deleuzoguattarian approaches to contemporary art, cognitive psychology, Heidegger, new materialism, queer theory. He is author of Images of Thought, Visuality in Islamic India 1550-1750 (Newcastle... Read More →
avatar for Luke Goode

Luke Goode


Wednesday December 4, 2019 9:00am - 11:00am NZDT
206-203 - Lecture Theatre 2

9:00am NZDT

Session Chair: Aimee B. Simpson 

Supuni Liyanagunawardena: From harsh pills to powerful pirith thread: Exploring the thing-power of medications

Medications are administered to bodies to bring about some (desirable) change, though their impact often transcends pharmacological efficacy. In a pluralistic medical landscape where biomedicine is juxtaposed against diverse folk and traditional therapeutics, the effects of medications further multiply in their entanglements with state policy, national identity and communal relationships. From my on-going doctoral research into everyday medication practices in a rural community in Sri Lanka, I draw on people’s engagement in diverse therapeutics that involve (and often combine) biomedical pharmaceuticals, plant-based remedies, Buddhist rituals and supernatural healing. To explore such dynamic and ambivalent interactions with a plethora of medications, I propose a vital materialist perspective as theorized by Jane Bennet. Based on data from qualitative interviews with 20 participating households, I delve into the ‘thing-power’ of medications, highlighting their capacity to ‘enchant’, transform and actively form human-nonhuman assemblages. Recognizing medications as nonhuman actants, I argue, could offer fresh insights into people-medication interactions and have important implications for public health approaches towards people’s medication practices.

Andrew Dickson: Fat is a fictional issue

In her seminal text, commonly referred too as FIFI, Susie Orbach proposes a diagrammatic representation of the ‘fat woman’. My descriptor of Orbach’s text as seminal is of course deliberate. Her text is super-saturated in phallic logic – the ease with which one can imagine themselves besuited in a lard-layer, waiting for a release, for thigh-gap to be reinstated, the proper woman. No wonder it is still a best-seller. Orbach’s text demonstrates the illogic characteristic between fa(c)t and fiction, her work is ostensibly factual, yet this image exists only in the fiction of phallic logic. In this presentation I will attempt to insert a prybar between the layers to consider how Lacan’s logic of sexuation can help us to understand the desire of/for thin in an age of the rampant obese. I will do this via the emerging radical qualitative method known, intriguingly, as autotheory.

Laura Starling: A New Zealand Perspective on Networked Publics and Trust in Contraceptive Apps

Social media influencers are becoming increasingly wide-reaching and influential, and many specialise in health and well-being. They use their platform to display ideal neoliberal citizenship by both actively participating in and promoting neoliberal capitalist ideology through the process of self-objectification and self-branding. Given that many social media influencers are lifestyle bloggers who promote health and well-being related products, they assume a level of medical authority to those in their networked publics. Authority is awarded to them by their community of followers and through the development of social capital in online networks. This research is particularly interested in the promotion and sale of reproductive health apps, which are advertised to followers as reliable and trustworthy forms of safe contraception. I will specifically focus on New Zealand-based social media influencers that promote reproductive health apps. Applying the Quantified Self and Goffman’s presentation of the self, a netnography of a networked public will be used examine trust and neoliberalism.

Alex Ker: Exploring trans and non-binary people’s epistemic agency when accessing gender-affirming hormones

Trans and non-binary people currently face barriers to accessing gender-affirming healthcare. These barriers, such as long waiting times and denial of care, are a result of the longstanding lack of transparent information, education, and funding towards gender-affirming care. While these barriers exist in Aotearoa, little is known about how these barriers affect trans people’s agency over their bodies, gender and healthcare. This presentation draws on my honours dissertation, in which I use the concept of epistemic injustice to explore eight trans people’s experiences of agency when accessing gender-affirming hormones in Wellington. Participants’ experiences suggest that trans people are required to perform epistemic labour to prove themselves as credible, knowledgeable and certain when accessing hormones. This labour is perceived as unfair and disproportionate to other healthcare, yet necessary to be perceived as a competent agent. In situations where trans people’s agency is affirmed, healthcare professionals trust people’s testimonies and engage in shared decision-making processes. This research highlights the need for healthcare providers to reconsider their epistemic responsibilities when providing care for populations that have historically been marginalised in healthcare settings.

Each presentation will be allocated 20 minutes. Additional time for questions and discussion will be available in each stream.

avatar for Aimee B. Simpson

Aimee B. Simpson

PhD Candidate, University of Auckland
Sociology PhD student based at the University of Auckland. Interested in sociology of medicine, the body and issues relating to health. Currently working on an analysis of obesity discourses and their effects on understandings of fatness, health and identity using a fat studies l... Read More →

Supuni Liyanagunawardena

PhD candidate, Victoria University of Wellington
My research is in Sociology of Health. For my PhD, I'm studying medication practices in rural households in Sri Lanka. Currently exploring new materialisms.

Wednesday December 4, 2019 9:00am - 11:00am NZDT
206-215 - Seminar Room 5

9:00am NZDT

Chair: John Darroch

Nigel Pizzini and Susan Crozier: Centering Matauranga Māori in a Social Practitioner Training Programme

This presentation is an account of the rationale behind the authors’ efforts to create a Masters in Narrative Practice programme, geared toward social practitioners, that might be deserving of the designation “bicultural”. We set out to create a programme that would bring Māori knowledge, language and values alongside and into dialogue with international, Eurocentric, non-Māori social practice models and theories. Our intention was to create a programme with Matauranga Māori at its heart, in contrast to programmes that confine Māori content to the beginning or end of a degree. We hope that our account might prove a useful contribution to social practitioner training, particularly with respect to promoting meaningful treaty-based practice. Beyond the question of how Tauiwi social practitioners are to engage respectfully with Māori clients, which risks falling into essentialising models of diversity, we argue that engagement with biculturalism, as suggested by the Treaty of Waitangi (Te Tiriti o Waitangi), provides a powerful lens for developing culturally responsive social practitioners more generally, within the context of Aotearoa New Zealand.

Sophia de Fossard: Children in Care and Protection: The relationship to their social worker and the quality of social worker supervision

A robust literature reports that the quality of the child’s relationship with their social worker is a mediating factor in facilitating the decision making about their future. However, the role of supervisors in shaping the extent to which social worker practices enhance or undermine children’s meaningful participation has been less explored. This presentation focuses on a review of the literature relevant to this question. Child participation in decisions surrounding their care has to be carefully balanced with between many aspects of involvement with government agencies. Given the constraints on the role of social workers within these contexts, this review explores the relationship between the child and their social worker, and how supervision is constructed in this process. This review will use the Treaty of Waitangi as the foundation for engaging in culturally appropriate care for children in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Irene Ayallo: The Advantages and Challenges of S4.5 Residence Category for victims of domestic violence policy

This presentation will focus on S4.5 Residence Category for victims of domestic violence (Operational Manual – Immigration New Zealand), in the context of intimate partner violence experienced by women of migrant and refugee background. Research shows that migrant and refugee background women face multiple challenges, including intimate partner violence. The lives of these women are compounded by factors tied to ethnic minority status, immigration status and processes, gender inequality and class marginalisation. The policy was introduced in response to a finding that legal issues connected to immigration status frequently extend migrant and refugee background women’s vulnerability once in violent relationships. It is argued in the presentation that while the policy ensures that the women can have greater legal protection from the perpetrators of violence, it is still problematic. Specifically, not all refugee and migrant background women are aware of this policy, will see themselves to be in a position to make best use of it, and/or cannot provide the required evidence. The challenges are discussed in the presentation.

Kiminori Fukuda: Trends in Social Welfare Reform for Out-of-Home Care in Japan

Currently social welfare reform for out-of-home care is underway in Japan. The direction is from Residential Care Institutions for Children (RCIC) to foster family care. While the foster parent placement rate rises, there are discussions about various problems that will occur. The turning point of social care in Japan was 2011 government report ‘Challenges and the Future Vision of Social Foster Care’. Since then, the Japanese government has built on this vision, including revising the law to achieve this direction. Based on an extensive review of Japanese government-issued policy documents and related literatures, this presentation introduces the new direction of social foster care system in Japan, and also the factors influencing the direction of policy change in Japan. We will discuss the future of out-of-home care in Japan, and the social work challenges we anticipate in providing support to a new generation of foster care families.

Each presentation will be allocated 20 minutes. Additional time for questions and discussion will be available in each stream.

avatar for Irene Ayallo

Irene Ayallo

Lecturer, UNITEC
I am a lecturer in social work - and also a registered social worker. I lecturer at the school of healthcare and social practice (Unitec)


Associate Professor, Kansai University
My name is FUKUDA Kiminori, an associate professor at Kansai University in Japan. I am currently a visiting scholar at the Faculty of Education and Social Work University of Auckland until next March. My major is social work, especially child welfare. At university, I am in charge... Read More →
avatar for Nigel Pizzini

Nigel Pizzini

Lecturer, Unitec
Nigel Pizzini is a Narrative Therapist in private practice and lecturer in counselling at Unitec Institute of Technology, Tāmaki Makaurau, Aotearoa New Zealand. Raised in the Waikato and with careers in youth work, education and therapy, grappling with biculturalism and honouring... Read More →
avatar for Sophia de Fossard

Sophia de Fossard

I have recently completed my Masters of Social Work Professional and I have also studied Psychology and Statistics. I am currently working as a research assistant for the University of Auckland in the area of social work supervision in statutory settings. I have an interest in social... Read More →

Wednesday December 4, 2019 9:00am - 11:00am NZDT
206-220 - Lecture Theatre 4

11:00am NZDT

Wednesday December 4, 2019 11:00am - 11:30am NZDT

11:30am NZDT

Chair: Kalym Lipsey

Lissy Fehnker: Human-nature relationships across Auckland: Exploring perceptions and connections to ‘nature’

This PhD research is exploring people’s perceptions of ‘nature’, their connectedness to ‘nature’, the practical implications of this. I would like to present on my research to date, highlighting methods used, background of the research and an example of results. I am interested in presenting so that I can gather feedback from cohorts outside of environmental management, particularly as my research straddles social sciences and sciences. Previous research has argued that human’s disconnection from the natural world contributes to environmental decline. Since human activity can be attributed to being a primary driver of environmental change, it is crucial when developing conservation and environmental management policies that we take into consideration factors that influence human activity and human motivations. Integrating a knowledge of people’s perceptions of nature and the reasoning behind certain actions into environmental management can assist in developing more holistic approaches which are strategic and tailored to accommodate the varying ways in how people relate, value and connect to nature. This study responds to a gap in knowledge in New Zealand and also internationally. This research will be the first major study which will investigate human-nature relationships in New Zealand. Internationally, it has been argued that more studies need to investigate how nature is perceived as often it is left undefined. Also, findings from research on human-nature relationships tend to stay in the field of psychology which eliminates any action from an environmental management perspective. However research understanding people’s connections to nature and the practice implications has been rated as high priority for conservation planning. This research will fill these important gaps and contribute to the development of theories that seek to understand why people do what they do, and how people view themselves in relation to the natural world around them. This research has involved 1,002 participants across Auckland and was conducted using online questionnaire and semi-structured interviews. Key results are that the most common perception of ‘nature’ is it is separate from humans. Perceptions of what ‘connections to nature’ mean is that it is something cognitive – relating to beliefs, knowledge or attitudes.

Angela Maynard & Bruce Curtis: Squeezed Aucklanders Reflect: A Qualitative Analysis of Discussions on Class

The presentation will discuss the commentary on class made by participants in our recent study of the ‘squeezed middle’ (Curtis, Maynard & Kanade, 2019). That study confirms the notion of a squeezed middle for the participants based in Auckland. Particular attention will be paid to how age, gender and occupation have shaped the discourse, and the extent to which a class narrative informs a critique of neo-liberalism.

Jessica Terruhn: Diversity and Equality in Urban Housing Renewal

Auckland is currently seeing an unprecedented number of urban development projects that form part of addressing the city’s housing crisis. This presentation critically discusses the discursive role notions of equality and diversity play in the visions of such urban development projects with a focus on the Auckland neighbourhood of Northcote. The Northcote Development is exemplary of current large-scale developments in Auckland insofar as it takes place in a socio-economically deprived neighbourhood with a large area of land owned by Housing New Zealand. In the course of redevelopment, this land undergoes intensification as well as partial privatisation by offering a mix of affordable and market homes alongside public housing. Based on a qualitative content analysis of planning documents, website content and community publications pertaining to the Northcote Development, this presentation argues that diversity is explicitly mobilised to justify state-led gentrification. This is particularly evident in discourses that frame a likely influx of higher-income earners in terms of greater socio-economic diversity that benefits all neighbourhood residents. In order to attract affluent homebuyers, undesirable ‘low-value’ diversity is eliminated whilst desirable diversity, especially as part of food culture, becomes an asset. All the while, notions of equality are conspicuously absent from visions for the neighbourhood. The discussion situates the findings in critical scholarship on the urban diversity dividend to argue that such discourses of socio-economic diversity ultimately benefit developers and gentrifiers while risking the direct and indirect displacement of low-income residents.

Each presentation will be allocated 20 minutes. Additional time for questions and discussion will be available in each stream.


Jessica Terruhn

Senior Researcher, Massey University
avatar for Kalym Lipsey

Kalym Lipsey

Massey University

Wednesday December 4, 2019 11:30am - 1:00pm NZDT
206-209 - Lecture Theatre 3

11:30am NZDT

Chair: Marilyn Chetty 

Naomi Fuamatu: Samoan Aiga (Family) and Youth Justice in Aotearoa, New Zealand

Family is important, when it comes to understanding the phenomena of youth offending. Family is where an individual’s life begins, from birth to the years of adolescence and transition into adulthood. A young person, encounters their own experience of how they are immersed or socialised into family life or connected to caregivers, people or a community that has significant meaning to the individual. Youth offending impacts families and communities, it is important to understand the significant role of family for young who engage or become entangled in the youth justice system. Particularly how family is perceived as an essential component in youth justice discourse. This presentation which will speak to Samoan aiga (family). The structures of power within the aiga model, considering how Samoan youth who become part of the youth justice system in Aotearoa, New Zealand - negotiate these aiga structures, articulate their reflections on their personal and collective sense of identity, well-being and belonging, before, during and/or after their engagement of the youth justice system. I intend to explore the aiga dynamic as a place of strength, resilience and challenge for Samoan youth.

Sailau Suaalii-Sauni, Juan Tauri, Robert Webb: Māori and Samoan Youth Justice in Aotearoa: preliminary research themes

An ongoing area of major concern for Māori and Samoan communities in Aotearoa New Zealand (NZ) is the criminal justice system, and in particular, the system’s responses to youth and their whānau/aiga (families) and vice versa. This paper outlines some themes from the preliminary analysis of the New Zealand leg of a Marsden research project on international comparisons of Māori and Samoan experiences of youth justice. This speaks to the different cultural and community knowledge frameworks used to understand justice, and the issues for youth in these communities.

Maja Curcic: The Making of Māori Hyper-Incarceration: Narratives of Imprisonment and the Violence Continuum

This presentation draws from interviews with Māori ex-inmates, their family members and Indigenous prison scholars. The paper analyses structural constraints and everyday struggles regarding incarceration, violence and dispossession. Acknowledging the social structures, historical context and power relations between Indigenous peoples and settler-colonial society, it investigates Māori incarceration as a structural problem that has its roots in New Zealand’s colonial and neo-colonial history. Throughout the thesis, the over-representation of Māori in the criminal justice system is not understood as an independent issue, much less a criminogenic problem, but as a wider social harm issue that has been in the making by various historical and structural processes of dispossession. The study investigates the ongoing process of the making of Māori hyper-incarceration with its destructive social, cultural, economic and political consequences. It reveals the active presence of structural violence that intimately translates into the violence continuum in everyday social settings and relationships. This includes a critical outcome where Māori incarceration becomes unremarked, internalised and taken for granted.

Each presentation will be allocated 20 minutes. Additional time for questions and discussion will be available in each stream.


Juan Tauri

Senior Lecturer, University of Waikato

Marilyn Chetty

PhD Candidate, University of Auckland

Wednesday December 4, 2019 11:30am - 1:00pm NZDT
206-220 - Lecture Theatre 4

11:30am NZDT

Chair: Steve Matthewman 

Tricia Wachtendorf, Samantha Penta, and Mary Nelan: Post-disaster materiel convergence: A social construction approach

Over a half century of research has pointed to the challenges associated with unsolicited donations in the post disaster-environment. The sociological concept of convergence is central to such examinations. Yet despite improvements in message clarity regarding problems associated with excessive transportation cost, inappropriate giving and timing, as well as storage and distribution, the challenges persist. Based on qualitative interviews conducted in the U.S. after several disaster events, this presentation adopts a social construction approach to materiel convergence in the aftermath of disaster. We find that people who organize donation drives are often motivated to engage in social action by concerns disparate from actual survivor need. Meeting the needs of the donor and donor organization often guide giving more so than an assessment of survivors’ objective need. An interdisciplinary approach - drawing on Weber’s theory of social action, the field of collective behavior, and humanitarian logistics – is central to this analysis and for developing strategies to mitigate the burden of non-priority items in the post-disaster supply chain.

Jeevan Karki: Whose Recovery Counts? Understanding Social Vulnerability in the South Asian Disaster Response and Recovery Context

While we have no control over natural hazards, it is society rather than nature that decides which type of people are more likely to be exposed to risks and which groups will suffer most in the aftermath of disaster. Caste and ethnicity, which are still a dominant factor of social stratification in South Asian societies, have been recognised as significant factors of social vulnerability; however, these aspects are often neglected in disaster research (see Bolin, 2007; Gaillard, 2011). Therefore, my ongoing research intends to address this gap. In
this paper, I will analyse how Dalits (one of most marginalised and oppressed social groups) and ethnic minorities in South Asian societies are structurally placed in vulnerable conditions and how this social inequality is perpetuated in post-disaster response and recovery contexts as well.

Sara Salman: Citizenship Lost: Post-Disaster Relief and the Banality of State Neglect

In 2012, New York City was hit by hurricane Sandy. The storm impacted approximately 70,000 homes. In the immediate aftermath, private citizens and charities came to the aid of those affected, while the federal government worked on dispensing aid quickly. The media hailed the private and federal responses as testaments to the “resiliency” of New Yorkers, and an illustration of “institutional efficacy,” respectively. But in the aftermath of the post-disaster high, long-term relief seemed to lag. In 2013, Mayor Bloomberg launched “Build it Back”, a long-term homeowners’ rebuilding program. The program was mediated by a powerful discourse of mistrust of needy citizens and valorization of the private sector, both of which paralyzed it, leaving scores of Americans unable to return home. This paper explores long-term aid efforts and the discourses that shaped relief after Hurricane Sandy as well as subsequent hurricanes. The paper argues that post-disaster relief in the United States offers an illustration of ebbing citizenship rights. It presents the American model as a cautionary tale against fetishization of the social contract.

Each presentation will be allocated 20 minutes. Additional time for questions and discussion will be available in each stream.


Jeevan Karki

PhD Candidate, The University of Auckland
avatar for Tricia Wachtendorf

Tricia Wachtendorf

Professor, Disaster Research Center Director, University of Delaware

Wednesday December 4, 2019 11:30am - 1:00pm NZDT
206-203 - Lecture Theatre 2

11:30am NZDT

Chair: Matthew Wynyard 

Emer Lyons: MTV and ME, ME, ME: How 90s Pop Culture Messed Up Millennials

“[. . .] wherein history unfolds as the future envisioned for a Child who must never grow up” (Bersani 2004, 21-22).

Why do I think everybody cares (/HURTS)? This paper is an autotheoretical hunt through the poetics of the nineties through M People, Daria, and the Spice Girls to see how a generation of forever young (me)millennials was created. In 1994, I’m six years old. My mother goes to an M People concert, she brings back a cloth neck tie with M PEOPLE stitched into it. I wrap it round my head like how I’ve seen the IRA wear their tricolour Tiocfaidh ár lá headbands. In section one I’ll deconstruct pop songs to analyse how Gen Y learnt individualism, to “search for the hero inside” ourselves (M People, 1994). In 1998, I’m ten. The world becomes autotuned. Ireland gets MTV. The Spice Girls are falling apart. I’m certain I’ll be a famous. In section two, I’ll look at the MTV show Daria and how individualism becomes nihilistic as millennials begin to chant “No Life. No Hope. No Future” (Daria, 1997). This paper will draw on queer anti-futurism through Leo Bersani, queer futurity through Jose Esteban Muñoz, and growing sideways through Kathyrn Bond Stockton.

Morgan Hodgson: The millennial question; who are we and what are we doing?

Millennials are a generational grouping who are increasingly facing the challenges of precarity. Where higher education once provided a route into secure employment, graduates are increasingly leaving universities to find themselves without any employment advantage, relegated to precarious employment with the addition of student debt. This presentation is going to look at the narratives of millennial graduates in New Zealand to discuss the emerging trend of educated precarity and to ask who are we, and what are we doing? These experiences consider the challenges of transitioning from a university into employment, the functionality of a university degree in New Zealand, and the looming mental health crisis of burn-out. What can these stories tell us about the state of capitalism in New Zealand, what can they tell us about our national identity, and how can we address the rise in precarity? It is through sharing our individual experiences that we are able to critique our social realities, join me to discuss the contemporary neoliberal climate in New Zealand.

Natalie Matthews: Subduing Sabrina: embodied metaphors of in/authenticity and the devaluing of the teenager

Recent churlish reactions to young people’s leadership in global climate strikes indicate the continuing relevance of the devalued “teenager” as a cultural trope. Here, I expand upon a case study from Neopagan Witchcraft to argue that teenagers are not merely understood as deficient adults-in-progress but as fundamentally inauthentic; a charge of some significance in what Charles Taylor characterised as an “age of authenticity”. I detail the stereotype of the “Teen Witch”, a defining Other within Neopaganism, including among young Witches themselves. Style-oriented, aligned with commoditised media imagery, and above all fundamentally susceptible, the teenaged Witch has elements of historical specificity but is also remarkably similar to boundary figures within diverse contemporaneous subcultural groups. Further analysis sees this as resting on wider constructions of in/authenticity. Drawing on an understanding of thought as fundamentally embodied, I show how these constructions rest on a depth model of authenticity upon which other binary relations of in/authenticity and un/desirability are articulated. The “teenager” consistently falls on the devalued side of this embodied understanding, both within Neopagan Witchcraft as the “teen Witch” and in wider representation.

Each presentation will be allocated 20 minutes. Additional time for questions and discussion will be available in each stream.

avatar for Emer Lyons

Emer Lyons

PhD Topic: Shame in Queer Contemporary Poetry in Ireland and New ZealandResearch Interests: Queer Theory, Poetic and Lyric Theory, Feminism, Affect Theory, Sociology of Emotion, Queer Theology, Irish Studies, Performance Studies.

Wednesday December 4, 2019 11:30am - 1:00pm NZDT
206-215 - Seminar Room 5

11:30am NZDT

Chair: Emily Keddell

Natalie Thorburn: Calling it trafficking: Looking past the silos to the truth

Young women who are subject to violence and are prostituted by their families or 'boyfriends' can rarely access the social and health services that they need. Typically occurring against a backdrop of ingrained suspicion about 'the state' and the potential risks and harm of seeking intervention, victims of domestic sex trafficking are routinely shut down when they attempt to voice the uneasy aspects of their experiences of victimisation. In part, this is due to a lack of a consistent national narrative about what constitutes trafficking and who constitutes a trafficking victim, but is also reflective of the siloing of services. Without a targeted service equipped to deal with all aspects of this experience, it falls to existing, often generalist practitioners to respond to support needs. This presentation draws on interviews with 16 young women and explores what these support needs are, and what barriers and opportunities there are to cross-sector work with victims.

Michelle Egan-Bitran: Supporting change on complex issues in complex environments: The role of religious institutions in addressing intimate partner violence and child abuse and neglect.

New Zealand has epidemic rates of Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) and Child Abuse and Neglect (CAN). Calls for change often focus on the social sector, leaving the role of the religious sector less examined. Responding to this gap, this study explores New Zealand Catholic, Methodist and Presbyterian Churches’ religious leader’s perspectives on what helps or hinders their denomination in developing responses to IPV and CAN, and how these could be improved. Data analysis is in progress using thematic analysis informed by a complexity theory lens. This presentation focuses on the methodological and ethical positioning entailed in ‘researching up’ with ‘elites’ on a sensitive topic at a time of public and State gaze, critique and calls for justice regarding abuse within religious settings. The study demonstrates that respectful, relationally-based research can create spaces for religious leaders to explore complex issues such as IPV and CAN in a manner which supports institutional transformation and social justice.

Natalie Thorburn and Samara Welch: Not so romantic: Intimate partner stalking in Aotearoa New Zealand

​​​​New Zealand has been slower than most of the developed world to enact anti-stalking legislation, and its Harassment Act 1997 is rarely used, particularly for intimate partner offences. Despite the low conviction rate, however, the majority of IPV victims are subjected to some form of stalking by an intimate partner - an act made more possible by the proliferation of digital means to monitor and control victims and consequent removal of proximity as a precondition for stalking. This research draws on the experiences of over 700 victims of intimate partner stalking to construct a multi-domain model of stalking, and discusses current good practice for ensuring digital and physical safety for IPS victims, including working across agencies and state actors. 

Each presentation will be allocated 20 minutes. Additional time for questions and discussion will be available in each stream.


Samara Welch

National Training and Professional Development Advisor, NCIWR

Wednesday December 4, 2019 11:30am - 1:00pm NZDT
206-201 - Lecture Theatre 1

11:30am NZDT

Chair: Liz Beddoe

Briar O’Connor: Normalising the Vulnerable Children Act in a school

One way to address Aotearoa New Zealand’s high rates of child abuse and neglect is to improve child safety in schools, as teachers have the most contact with children outside of the home (Beddoe, de Haan, & Joy, 2018; D. Wilson & Webber, 2014). The Vulnerable Children Act 2014 (VCA) has legislated that child protection policies (CPPs) be implemented in all schools, in the place of mandatory reporting. This includes staff being able to identify and respond to suspected and actual abuse. Schools must now ensure CPPs are implemented, integrated and embedded – the facets that make up Normalization Process Theory (May & Finch, 2009). Working with a school to discover how this might happen informs my PhD. In this paper I will outline some of the challenges of the Act, of working within a school environment, and of dis/connections between social work and education.

Eileen Joy: ’Hard to reach families’ and austerity politics in the Green Paper for Vulnerable Children: What this can tell us about the current Oranga Tamariki reforms?

Recently, Minister for Oranga Tamariki, Tracey Martin has countered concerns about Oranga Tamariki by stating that it is only two years into a five-year planned reform. In this presentation, it is suggested that to understand these current reforms we need to consider its genesis in the Green Paper for Vulnerable Children (2011). Bacchi (2009) will be used to examine ‘what the problem was/is presented to be’ in the Green Paper and how that ultimately lead to and informed the reformation of Child Youth and Family into Oranga Tamariki. It is suggested that the context of the Green Paper, coming as a response to both the heavily publicised deaths of some Māori children and the fiscal constraints post GFC, has created a problematic foundation for these current reforms that is both racist and poverty blaming.

Susan Kemp and Paula King: Knowledge Weaving: Building Culturally Grounded Frameworks for Participatory Child Protection Practice

The ratification of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) by NZ in 1993 required the state to establish mechanisms for realising children’s rights to meaningful participation in decisions affecting their lives and wellbeing. This obligation is consistent with the principles of te Tiriti o Waitangi and is embedded in New Zealand legislation, including the Oranga Tamariki Act 1989. Ensuring meaningful participation by children and young people in child protection services (CPS) is however challenging. In NZ, this gap is particularly concerning for tamariki Māori. Revisions to the 1989 Act (Section 7AA) require Oranga Tamariki to demonstrate a “practical commitment” to te Tiriti. However, NZ lacks frameworks for participatory child protection practice grounded in Māori perspectives, priorities, and tikanga. Drawing on Oranga Mokopuna, a decolonial child wellbeing model based in te Ao Māori and collective indigenous rights, as well as the participatory rights principles of the UNCRC, this presentation describes the integrative conceptual foundations undergirding our current research, which aims to develop frameworks for CPS practice that bridge the system’s obligation to safeguard children’s individual rights and its equal obligation, under te Tiriti o Waitangi, to partnership with and full participation by tamariki Māori, whānau, hapū and Iwi.

Charlotte Chisnell & Sarah Elliott: Changing the narrative – Why are we still referring to victims of child sexual exploitation as child prostitutes?

Globally the term child sexual exploitation is used to describe exploitive situations in which a young person engages in sexual activities in exchange for money or goods. CSE includes face to face grooming, online grooming and commercial trafficking. CSE is a form of child sexual and emotional abuse however, because the exploitation occurs in situations where a young person enters into a transactional arrangement, there is an assumption that they are making informed choices with an equal bargaining power rather than being controlled and victims of abuse. Currently there are limited services and resources to support victims, and despite the fact that social workers have specific legal duties of care to protect children and young people from abuse protocols and strategies for assessment and intervention remain underdeveloped. We have a responsibility to change the narrative around CSE and to stop the blaming of victims. We need to challenge the perception that CSE involves informed choice and acknowledge that it constitutes a misuse of power which violates young people’s rights and places them at risk of abuse; ultimately we need to develop multi-agency protocols and interventions which will safeguard young people who are victims of CSE.

Each presentation will be allocated 20 minutes. Additional time for questions and discussion will be available in each stream.

avatar for Briar O’Connor

Briar O’Connor

PhD candidate, University of Auckland
Normalisation Process Theory; Child Protection Policies and Procedures; primary schools; applied theatre; family violence primary prevention; Everyday Theatre
avatar for Liz Beddoe

Liz Beddoe

Professor, University of Auckland

Wednesday December 4, 2019 11:30am - 1:00pm NZDT
206-217 - Seminar Room 6

1:00pm NZDT

Wednesday December 4, 2019 1:00pm - 2:00pm NZDT

2:00pm NZDT

KEYNOTE: Professor Ian Buchanan
Expressive Materialism

Assemblage theory, more so than most theories it seems, is subject to several misconceptions, which weigh it down, and prevent it from being developed into a method. One of the most pernicious of these misconceptions is the tendency to treat the concept of the assemblage as a material thing, something that is cobbled together from random bits of material like a potluck dinner or a patchwork quilt. There is a common sense quality to the idea that the assemblage is something assembled from miscellaneous things that is difficult to argue with because the very word assemblage seems to be saying precisely and completely obviously that. Yet if that’s all it is saying then it is saying very little. If assemblages are simply any ad hoc grouping of things it is difficult to see the utility of the concept, save that it names randomly formed entities. To my way of thinking, this model of the assemblage is like a souffle that has failed to rise and it is our job to ask why it falls flat, to see what is missing in its formulation, and use that to deepen our understanding of Deleuze and Guattari’s version of the concept. My contention is that it falls flat because we try to see it as a fully formed thing, whereas for Deleuze and Guattari is an emergent thing, like a little ditty, something you whistle to yourself and improvise as you go along. It is the kernel of idea that may or may not come to fruition. It contains its own logic, but it is always contingent upon circumstances. But more than that, its purpose is to give expression to something that is otherwise unable to be expressed. Assemblage theory tends to overlook this aspect of the assemblage, which is another reason it falls flat. I want to breathe life back into the concept by developing an account of it as a form of what I will call ‘expressive materialism’, which I want to suggest will be of use to sociology now and in the future as it confronts an increasingly complex and multi-tiered global society.

avatar for Professor Ian Buchanan

Professor Ian Buchanan

University of Wollongong
Ian Buchanan is professor of cultural studies at the University of Wollongong. He is the founding editor of Deleuze and Guattari Studies and the author of Assemblage Theory and Method (Bloomsbury) the Oxford Dictionary of Critical Theory (OUP).

Wednesday December 4, 2019 2:00pm - 3:00pm NZDT
201N-346 - HSB1

3:00pm NZDT

Wednesday December 4, 2019 3:00pm - 3:30pm NZDT

3:30pm NZDT

Chair: RituParna Roy 

Vinod Bal: #TheyAreUs in the wake of the Christchurch Terrorist Attacks

In the wake of the March 15th Christchurch terrorist attacks, hashtag ‘they are us’ emerged swiftly by the majority in every facet of New Zealand. From the highest levels of the state to the ground-roots of the country, the phrase was said, mostly, without any confirmation from those actually targeted by the attack. Using Robin Diangelo’s seminal work on White Fragility, this paper elucidates how this movement, while well-intentioned, is part of a broader function of whiteness that hinders much needed articulation of racism and anti-racist strategies in New Zealand. This paper argues that #TheyAreUs represents more than just a successful attempt at deflection but rather a denial of any call to New Zealanders to introspect their own racialized prejudices and a failed attempt to acknowledge this event as a part of a growing re-emergence of white supremacy. The chant facilitated a dissociative stance toward the racist attacks while maintaining the racial status quo. Such strategies perpetuate an environment that is passively permissive to white supremacy by absolving New Zealanders of responsibility by adopting a position of victimhood and innocence. This paper concludes that this movement is paradoxical and harmful to those targeted by this attack.

Erica Lee: Race, affect and psychoanalysis

In the book Mistaken Identity: Race and Class in the Age of Trump (2018), Asad Haider brings attention to the “self-colonising trajectory of certain forms of identity politics” among the racially oppressed. There exists a paradox: for the racially oppressed to reappropriate the imposed negative identities as a source of pride, to use as a form of defense and protection, they remain under the subjection of racial ideology. These identities are not easily given up, one reason being that the reclamation involves self-driven reworkings of one’s own racial trauma, the process itself often being traumatic. Scholars point to the unconscious to explain such attachment to racial identities and the affective strength of these attachments.Thus, this paper aims to trace various psychoanalytic theorising of racial subjection/subjectivation and affect in the current literature. This will form the basis to construct an anti-colonial theoretical framework for the racially subjectivated psyche.

Matthew Wynyard: ‘Starving in the midst of plenty’: The dispossession of Māori land and Crown ‘compensation

Article two of Te Tiriti o Waitangi guarantees to Māori the full, exclusive and undisturbed possession of any land they wish to retain. In the century or so that followed the signing of Te Tiriti, and in complete contempt of it, Māori were systematically dispossessed of all but a tiny fraction of their lands through a variety of mechanisms including raupatu, the individualization of title, forced sale to defray survey costs, excessive Crown purchasing, and the compulsory acquisition of land for defense and public works purposes. Māori land holdings diminished to just 5 per cent of Aotearoa comprising mostly inaccessible backcountry, totally unsuitable for development. This paper draws on an emergent body of indigenous critical theory, Marx’s theory of primitive accumulation and the author’s experiences working as a Crown historian to argue that the loss of land systematically excluded Māori from the developing land-based capitalist economy and that the current Treaty settlement process, which typically involves the return of little, if any, productive land, does little to address the perilous position of many Māori in an economy that is still very much based on the possession of land.

Each presentation will be allocated 20 minutes. Additional time for questions and discussion will be available in each stream.

Wednesday December 4, 2019 3:30pm - 5:30pm NZDT
206-220 - Lecture Theatre 4

3:30pm NZDT

Chair: Louise Humpage

Charlotte Moore: It’s life Jim… but not as we know it: Community provision of social services within a social investment state

Drawing upon mixed economy of welfare perspectives, this paper examines how initiatives introduced by New Zealand’s National-led Government (2008-2017) have further eroded boundaries between the state, the private sector and the community and voluntary sector, and how this may impact on the ways in which citizens access or engage with social service providers. These initiatives include the establishment of a ‘Social Investment Approach’, a commission of inquiry into ‘More Effective Social Services’ and the piloting of a number of new commissioning tools. Key aspects of reforms include a strong focus on outcomes or ‘what works’, the precision targeting and segmentation of service users and efforts to streamline government contracting processes. Drawing upon initial findings from a series of qualitative interviews with key stakeholders in the social services sector in New Zealand it is possible to identify a number of potential policy implications. These include reduced diversity of community and voluntary sector organisations as larger, more ‘corporate’ entities are rewarded with government contracts while smaller, locally embedded organisations become less viable. Furthermore, there is a risk of reduced levels of trust in community organisations due to a perception that the personal information of service users may be shared with government funders. Finally, targeting of social services may increase stigma for some service users, while others may find reduced access to services where they do not meet higher thresholds for intervention.

Kiri West: Data from 'Given' to 'Taken'

Data are the single-most significant asset shaping our present and future realities. Data are driving national and global economies, and are presented as the evidential basis for the development of policies; they are framing political landscapes and radically transforming what it means to live in a democratic state. Underlying the datafication of our common realities is a persistent rhetoric that data are objective and free from bias. This claim will be contested in the light of the experience of Indigenous peoples’. The presentation will unpack these tacit assumptions and interrogate the political assignment of data as ‘neutral’ in modern contexts by looking at the history of the concept. Through this discussion, I will flesh out the congruences between early conceptualisations of data as a ‘gift’ with the importance of koha in te ao Māori. Raising the question how did the ‘given’, become the ‘taken ’? This will inform a broader articulation of the relevance of kawa and tikanga drawn from te ao Māori in the development of governance frameworks for data in Aotearoa New Zealand today.

Bo Li: Professionalization of grassroots NGOs and governments-NGOs partnerships in China

The past 40 years have seen a dramatic development of the grassroots NGOs in China. Although the
literature on the rise of grassroots NGOs and their relationships with the authoritarian governments is
increasing, knowledge regarding the operations of individual grassroots NGOs and the differences
among these relationships is lacking. There is more knowledge about NGOs in China on a macro level
than that on the organizational/micro level. Built on existing literature of graduated control, this paper
utilizes ethnographic case study and interviews with key participants of the NGOs. It examines the
operations of two grassroots NGOs in China involving in rural education. By tracing the development
process of each one, it describes the key characteristics of professionalization and explains how the
professionalization of NGOs contributes to their partnerships with the governments. This leads to a
better understanding of how grassroots NGOs in China grow from politically marginalized groups
with low capacity to professional actors with expertise in finding new solutions to social problems in
this authoritarian regime.

Edwin Sayers: Gifts, relationship building, and gambling policy: SkyCity and the New Zealand International Convention Centre

This paper will present preliminary findings and interpretation from a small component of a larger research project that explores the relationship between industry actors and policy in the context of several unhealthy commodities. Specifically, this paper will examine the policy process surrounding the New Zealand International Convention Centre Act 2013, in which SkyCity was granted regulatory concessions for its Auckland-based casino (New Zealand’s largest) in exchange for funding an international convention centre. My empirical focus is on a range of potential points of policy influence including donations, gifts, hospitality, formal meetings, and informal relationships. This data is drawn from a range of sources, including the Register of Pecuniary Interests, an investigation by the Office of the Auditor General, and an investigation by the New Zealand Police. My theoretical focus is on the potential for industry actors and their representatives to influence policy through the production and maintenance of relationships based on reciprocity.

Each presentation will be allocated 20 minutes. Additional time for questions and discussion will be available in each stream.


Bo Li

PhD Candidate, The University of Auckland

Edwin Sayes

Research Fellow, University of Auckland

Wednesday December 4, 2019 3:30pm - 5:30pm NZDT
206-217 - Seminar Room 6

3:30pm NZDT

BREAKOUT SESSION FOUR: Science & Technology
Chair: Manuel Vallee 

Jacqueline Tinkler: “All traditions will go”: Students, technology, and the future of schooling

This presentation deals with the way in which secondary school students view the role of technology in schools of the future. Four groups of secondary students from two Australian schools produced hand-drawn concept maps of both the present and future of digital technologies for schooling, which were then followed by focus group discussions. The ways in which students considered the use of digital technologies at school in the future were analysed. The findings indicated that students often looked forward to technology that was more useful and reliable than it was currently, but they were also concerned with the loss of many of the things that they valued about their school. Technological determinism, and the myth of technological progress were evident in these findings, pointing to the lack of agency students felt in relation to the use of digital technologies in school. These results suggest there is a need to engage students in the process of planning and implementing educational technologies, particularly in relation to how they are integrated into their schooling in general.

David Mercer: Science –Anti Science, Truth, Trust and the Right to Know. The Berkeley Cell Phone Case

On July 2, 2019, the U.S. Supreme Court affirmed a mandate proposed by Berkeley City Council (California) requiring cell-phone retailers to provide information to consumers informing them that if a phone is carried in a pocket or a bra that it is possible that US RF safety guidelines will be exceeded. This decision is likely to have broader implications. The CTIA (The US trade group representing the cell phone industry) argues that the mandate represents ‘a war against science’ and that its members are being conscripted to “utter anti-science views” which will alarm the public. For Berkeley, assisted by eminent technology and copyright lawyer Lawrence Lessig, the mandate is about the public having a ‘right to know’ about what they are purchasing and merely reiterates information consistent with the CTIA’s ‘own science based standards’. The case provides an excellent platform to consider the different ways notions of truth, trust, science and anti-science, are deployed by actors negotiating disputed interpretations of scientific consensus and uncertainty and images of the ‘public understanding of science’ in an era where policy makers and commentators are increasingly pre-occupied with questions of ‘post-truth’ and ‘anti-science’

Ludger Benighaus: Citizens’ survey on reputation of mining and exploration in Finland, Germany and Spain

The authors will present a representative citizens’ survey on mining and mineral exploration that was carried out in each of the countries Finland, Germany and Spain, March 2018. The aim of the survey was to analyse the public attitude towards mining activities and mineral exploration. The results show that citizens in Finland, Germany and Spain have a positive attitude towards mining concerning the importance of the sector for the whole economy, the chances for employment and being independent by mining resources in the own country. People see a benefit for the local infrastructure and facilities when it comes to mining. In general terms, Indifferent among the citizens’ opinion is the trust and acceptance towards mining industry and how public authorities handle mining issues. Impact on environment caused by mining is seen as a huge issue. A stable 10 to 15% of all participants show a very critical (very negative) attitude in general towards mining and mineral exploration. The results supported designing the stakeholder engagement process in regions in Finland, Germany and Spain for 2018 and 2019.

Each presentation will be allocated 20 minutes. Additional time for questions and discussion will be available in each stream.

avatar for Jacqueline Tinkler

Jacqueline Tinkler

Lecturer, Charles Sturt University
avatar for Ludger Benighaus

Ludger Benighaus

Researcher and project manager, Dialogik
Kia Ora,would love to talk with conference attendees about a research project I am working for: www.infactproject.eu. It is about Mineral exploration and mining with an approach of public engagement (Europe).My two presentations at the SAANZ Conference:1. Citizens’ survey on reputation... Read More →

Wednesday December 4, 2019 3:30pm - 5:30pm NZDT
206-215 - Seminar Room 5

3:30pm NZDT

BREAKOUT SESSION FOUR: Social Futures (Panel)
Chair: Avril Bell

Panel Presentations & Discussion

What are the responsibilities and possibilities for non-Māori to contribute to a decolonial future Aotearoa/New Zealand? In this Marsden-funded research programme we use the term ‘tāngata tiriti’ to identify all non-Māori New Zealanders and highlight our/their relationship and responsibilities to Te Tiriti o Waitangi and to Treaty partnership work. We ask how tāngata tiriti are ‘learning the trick of standing upright here’? In this project, we are interviewing tāngata tiriti working across a range of professional spheres, exploring their engagements with Maori in support of decolonial futures and the significance of Te Tiriti to them in that work. These papers report on early data from this project.

Avril Bell: The dance of proximity and distance in negotiating Treaty partnership work

Pākehā relationships with, and orientations towards, Māori have been shaped by 180 years of colonial and racist dominating logics, which over time have become sedimented into Pākehā commonsense. In this paper, I explore some of the important counters to, or ways of undoing, this commonsense, beginning with Alison Jones and Kuni Jenkins’ (2008) argument that collaborations with Māori firstly, and most importantly, require care for the relationship itself rather than a primary focus on the goals of the collaboration. They use the metaphor of the hyphen – a spatial mark that both separates and connects – to point to the delicate dance of connection and distance required in collaborative/partnership work. Here, I expand on their argument to tease out the strands of relational dynamics involved. Using interview extracts from the Tangata Tiriti project and Emmanuel Levinas’s ethical philosophy, the paper will highlight how care for the hyphen involves maintaining epistemological distance and ethical connection or proximity.

Chris Woods: Learning the Trick of Standing upright here: appreciative inquiry in action

In this paper, I explore the use of an appreciative inquiry lens as a means to identify what facilitates successful relationships. Appreciative inquiry focuses on what works well in an organization, rather than the problems, challenges and issues (Cooperrider et al. 2000; Cooperrider and Srivestva 1987). It leaves a ‘deficit-oriented approach” to instead focus on understanding organisations by asking questions that explore positive engagement. That does not mean that negative experiences are denied – rather they are used to highlight where positive experiences have occurred (Leeson et al, 2016). Through an appreciate inquiry lens this paper offers stories of relationship, partnership and identity gathered from non-Māori New Zealanders working closely and constructively with Māori in a business context to provide accounts of those learning ‘the trick of standing upright here’. Consideration of the relationships between tāngata whenua and tāngata tiriti also serves the interests of the empowered Māori communities and organisations of this post-Treaty-settlement era who have become significant political and economic actors nationwide.

Billie Lythberg: Tuia – Encounters 250: ‘Binding’ conversations?

Non-Māori living in Aotearoa New Zealand have been denoted by various terms throughout history, and their relationship with Māori has been described by multiple metaphors. The former are present in the ways we describe ourselves and formalised in official documents; the latter in academic and popular media designed to interrogate, collapse or perpetuate difference. 2019 marks the 250-year commemoration of the first onshore encounters between Māori and the British and European crew of the Endeavour, under the command of Lieutenant James Cook and the guidance of Ra‘iātean navigator Tupaia. The associated programme of events supported by Ministry of Culture and Heritage, Tuia – Encounters 250, uses the metaphor of binding (tuia) to frame “an opportunity to hold honest conversations about the past, the present, and how we navigate our shared future together.” (https://mch.govt.nz/tuia250) In this paper I present perspectives offered by self-described ‘Pākehā’, ‘tauiwi’, ‘Pasifikan’ and other non-Māori who are contributing to these conversations via the Tuia – Encounters 250 arts and culture programmes supported by MCH.

Rose Yukich: Affect, activism and Pākehā history teachers

Māori historian Aroha Harris (2019) contends that teaching our own history in secondary schools “should be an ordinary step, not a bold one” and that the skills of historical literacy “can teach us to debate without debasing either ourselves or each other”. As Pākehā history teacher Michael Harcourt (2019) argues, “History is about the future. How we think, or don’t think about the past shapes the way we imagine the future and its possibilities”. Yet our NCEA history curriculum still allows schools to sidestep our country’s colonial past as a set topic for sustained study. The emphasis instead is on teacher autonomy and choice. Those who commit to teaching senior students about New Zealand history (including the Treaty) are indeed bold, some publicly taking an activist political stance to challenge the current curriculum policy. Through the Tāngata Tiriti project, I interviewed such extra-ordinary Pākehā teachers to explore what moved them to become open to learning and teaching our nation’s past. What sorts of affective connections and attachments (Ahmed, 2015) shaped their teacher identities and desires to help students develop into critical thinkers about 19th century Māori-settler entanglement and its ongoing effects?

Wednesday December 4, 2019 3:30pm - 5:30pm NZDT
206-209 - Lecture Theatre 3

3:30pm NZDT

Chair: Jay Marlowe

Hoa Nguyen: Social Justice approach for Financial Capability program

Financial literacy has received increasing attention as a strategy to help reduce and prevent financial hardship. In 2018, the Sorted in Schools, a financial capability programme, was launched with the aim to integrate financial literacy across the New Zealand curriculum and Maori Medium Education by 2021. This is a great initiative, helping to equip our youth with financial knowledge and skills from an early age. However, practitioners and teachers need to be careful in how they deliver the materials, avoiding deficit based approach as it could potentially have negative effect on students’ self-efficacy and their cultural aspirations. This idea came from a formative evaluation in which online surveys were collected from 137 students and semi-structured interviews were conducted with 17 students. All were from an intermediate and a secondary school in West Auckland. Results showed that some Pasifika and Maori students have negative perception regards to how their families manage money as it does not resonate with the Western individualistic way of money management. This presentation will discuss the findings of the formative evaluation along with some recommendations for best practices.

Alankar Sharma: Heteropatriarchy, masculinity, and child sexual abuse

Men and boy survivors of child sexual abuse are an under-acknowledged, under-studied, and stigmatized population in India. Research on child sexual abuse in India is still in its early stages and little extant research has examined experiences of child sexual abuse for boys and men. I conducted a phenomenological study focusing on the lived experiences of 11 Indian adult men who had experienced sexual abuse during childhood. Through centering participants’ experiences, I demonstrate that heteropatriarchal social structures manifested as homophobia, compulsory heterosexuality, silence about sexuality, and masculinist gender norms are at the core of how men survivors understand and make meaning of their abuse experiences. These lived experiences as located within a web of pervasive and toxic heteropatriarchy stand in dissonance against individualized, behavioral and psychopathological approaches to preventing and addressing sexual abuse of boys. I argue that feminist perspectives are integral to meaningful and sustainable responses to sexual abuse of boys.

Marissa Kaloga: Capital for Construction: A case study in advancing racial equity through community engaged program development

In 2017, an informal group of retirement-age African American construction contractors approached their local non-profit microfinance organization (ECDI) in Columbus, Ohio. The 2008 financial crisis forced most African American contractors out of business, leaving a gap in the local economy. The group wanted to know: How can we work together to create a new cohort of minority construction contractors? In the following year, ECDI worked with a diverse group of public and private stakeholders to create and implement the Capital for Construction program, which offers technical assistance, mentorship, and a novel loan product to launch and grow minority-owned construction businesses. The pilot program was deemed successful in 2018, having successfully supported successful more than 12 new minority-owned companies, and creating more than 40 new jobs. I will present this program as a single, retrospective case study, using an interpretive approach to explore the innovative program design and strategic partnerships employed to develop and implement this program. Using analysis from methods including participant observation, semi-structured interviews, and program outcome data, I will present a holistic account of how social and economic justice, central tenets of social work, can be advanced through community level partnerships and design thinking.

Mike Dee: Protest to Survive

This paper explores the surveillance and control project underway in Western societies to govern the ‘dangerous classes’, of the poor, dispossessed and homeless, who owe their malign fortune to the climate of austerity and punitive welfare measures facilitated by the Global Financial Crisis. It is at this point that a reaffirmation of civil, social and political rights as a basis for a ‘good society’, is most crucial. The conference theme of Resistance is a key element in the paper, in resisting the seemingly unstoppable decline of the welfare state. Instead, the principles of social justice, participation and meaningful social inclusion have a major role to play in the reframing of social work, aided by an emerging protesting class of children and young people, taking to the streets because of climate change, forming a constituency of progressive change agents, active across a range of social, environmental, political and economic issues.

Each presentation will be allocated 20 minutes. Additional time for questions and discussion will be available in each stream.



Lecturer, Unitec Institute of Technology
avatar for Jay Marlowe

Jay Marlowe

Associate Professor, University of Auckland

Wednesday December 4, 2019 3:30pm - 5:30pm NZDT
206-203 - Lecture Theatre 2

3:30pm NZDT

Chair: Susan Kemp

Ian Hyslop: The Sociology of Child Protection Reform: Emotional Politics and Contested Narratives

Between 1989 and 2015 the racialized statutory child protection narrative in Aotearoa-New Zealand transformed from a focus on the damage done to Māori children by state violence to the cost visited upon the state and wider society by ‘dangerous families’. The tensions underpinning this discursive shift are manifested in the emotional politics of child protection reform. This presentation will explore how the narratives evident within of this contested field are constructed by conflicting socio-political currents that are deeply embedded within the political and cultural rubric of Aotearoa New Zealand, specifically the unresolved conflict between liberal politics and Te Tiriti of Waitangi in a structurally unequal society. It will be argues that resolution of the problem of child protection may lie in deconstruction of these framing discourses and a reimagining of socially just social work policy and practice.

Emily Keddell: Rethinking domestic violence in child protection assessments: challenging the failure to protect narrative

As the definition of child emotional abuse has extended to include exposure to intimate partner violence, so has the remit of child protection services to intervene in such cases. The intersecting systems of child protection and domestic violence services can operate on ‘different planets’, with differing ideologies and conceptual bases regarding the causes, and hence assumptions about responsibility for violence in adult interpersonal relationships (Hester, 2011). Drawing on media reports and interview data from a decision-making study of social workers, this talk discusses these tensions in the Aotearoa New Zealand context. I argue that when child protection responses, drawing on a ‘child-centred’ discourse, construct domestic violence as the fault of both parents, this dichotomises the child victim with both adults as culpable perpetrators. Because of this, if a mother does not instantly end the relationship, or if she is the victim of very serious violence, even if she seeks refuge help, she may lose custody of her children and be construed as ‘failing to protect’ them. This punishes both women and children for (predominantly) men’s violence, and damages both women’s agency and children’s relationships with their non-violent parent, a key protective factor for children exposed to IPV.

Lauren Devine: Social problems, social work and social justice

This paper draws on data and qualitative work from a UK project. The work was prompted by concerns amongst the UK’s Judiciary, politicians and the media about the seemingly counter-productive outcomes of the past 27 years of statutory safeguarding policy. The concern was prompted by several data-driven UK studies indicating that the ambitious new-Labour neo-liberal policies of early intervention had not delivered the expected results. This paper challenges the political and private sector’s rhetoric that increased funding for privatized services will reduce poor outcomes in child protection. Interviews with practitioners positioned throughout the child protection process showed remarkably similar results despite the different roles: that of deep cynicism that social work in the UK’s framework aligns with social justice. The need for resistance is outlined, together with the difficulties and challenges for social work to emerge as re-aligned with ‘just’ outcomes, and for service users to resist socially unjust interventions.

John Darroch: Political activity and statutory social work; how far are social workers allowed to go?

Social workers employed by the state face a range of organisational and legal restrictions which impact on their ability to engage in political activity. This paper draws upon recent court decisions, organisational guidelines, and legislation to analyse the nature of the limits that apply to statutory social workers in Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand. It argues that public servants are effectively prevented from publicly critiquing government policy, and organisational practice, when there is a direct connection between their critique and the work that they do. It is argued that such restrictions represent a significant conflict with social work ethics; including ethical requirements to draw attention to systemic injustices. Drawing on original research into political activity by social workers in New Zealand this paper will also show how such restrictions can have a chilling effect on the willingness of statutory social workers to engage in any iteration of political action.

Each presentation will be allocated 20 minutes. Additional time for questions and discussion will be available in each stream.

avatar for Emily Keddell

Emily Keddell

Univ of Otago
Child protection: policy, inequalities, power, knowledge, decision-making, rights, algorithms, ethnicity.
avatar for Ian Hyslop

Ian Hyslop

Senior Lecturer, University of Auckland
Social justice and social work - the progress development of child and family practice.
avatar for Lauren Devine

Lauren Devine

Professor of Law & Ethics, University of the West of England
My research focuses on the legal and ethical balance between State power and private rights, particularly in public law processes, identifying hidden vulnerabilities and unintended consequences in welfare systems. I empirically evaluate the impact of consensual and non-consensual... Read More →

Wednesday December 4, 2019 3:30pm - 5:30pm NZDT
206-201 - Lecture Theatre 1

5:30pm NZDT

Chill out / Mingle
Wednesday December 4, 2019 5:30pm - 6:00pm NZDT

6:00pm NZDT

KEYNOTE: Professor Raewyn Connell
Sociology for All

This keynote will discuss some ambitious questions about our discipline. Why do we want a science of society? Since the idea was proposed by Comte, answers have changed several times; most pertinent is that society needs self-knowledge, and a 'diagnosis of our time' is possible through sociology. Then, what is 'our time'? Sociologists have been wrestling with vast changes in technologies and economies, yielding ideas such as globalization and neoliberalism; we now confront the rise of racist and authoritarian politics and massive environmental destruction. Is current sociology adequate to this? I give some reasons to think it is not, and consider some dismal futures for the discipline: disappearance; corporatisation; residualisation. Where could renewal come from? Here the picture is more hopeful. There are important forms of subaltern knowledge production, and notable theorists from the global South. Cooperation and creativity are still found in academic work, new knowledge workforces are emerging, and multiple perspectives can circulate. What are the resources of hope? They include the concept of the right to knowledge, and the continuing support for public education. Making a 'sociology for all' is not simple, but we have some idea how to do it; in the current atmosphere of crisis, creative action remains possible.

avatar for Professor Raewyn Connell

Professor Raewyn Connell

University of Sydney
Raewyn is a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia, a recipient of the American Sociological Association's award for distinguished contribution to the study of sex and gender, and of the Australian Sociological Association's award for distinguished service to sociology... Read More →

Wednesday December 4, 2019 6:00pm - 7:00pm NZDT
201N-346 - HSB1