Associate Professor Bronwyn Carlson

Bronwyn CarlsonRoom Number: 19.1080A
Phone Number: +61 2 4239 2526

Bronwyn is an Associate Professor, lecturing in the Indigenous Studies Unit, Faculty of Law, Humanities and the Arts.

Academic Qualifications:

PhD Sociology from the University of New South Wales
BA (Hons 1) Sociology and Aboriginal Studies from the University of Wollongong


Associate Professor Carlson is an Aboriginal woman who was born on and lives on D’harawal Country in NSW Australia. She is a scholar with both a national and international reputation in the field of Indigenous Studies. This is evidenced by her success in two consecutive ARC Discovery (Indigenous) grants (2013-2015 & 2016-2018 UOW receives its first Discovery Indigenous Grant), her receipt of the prestigious Stanner Award (2013), (a national award administered by Australia’s leading institute for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies - read the full article) and her current book, The Politics of Identity: Who Counts as Aboriginal Today? published by Aboriginal Studies Press. She has vast teaching and curriculum development experience and has published in Indigenous Studies journals, nationally and internationally. Associate Professor Carlson maintains a strong connection between Indigenous Studies pedagogy and research. In 2013, she established the Forum for Indigenous Research Excellence (FIRE) at UOW. This was a new initiative and remains the UOWs only Indigenous focused research entity. She has taken a lead role in curriculum transformation through the development of new Indigenous Studies subjects that include global perspectives in Indigenous Studies. Associate Professor Carlson has also spearheaded online teaching in Indigenous Studies though the application of various technologies which connect her research into Indigenous peoples’ use of online forums to her teaching and learning praxis. She is the recipient of two internal Educational Strategy Development Fund grants and two internal International Links grants for curriculum development projects. She has built impressive national and international networks with other Indigenous scholars resulting in collaborative curriculum projects with international partners. Associate Professor Carlson is committed to ensuring Indigenous peoples in Australia and around the globe have access to resources and information in relation to Indigenous Studies establishing a unique and innovative digital journal in 2014, The Journal of Global Indigeneity. While housed at UOW the journal has a global focus.

Follow on Twitter @BronwynCarlson

Research Interests:

  • The politics of Indigenous identity
  • Indigenous peoples' and social media
  • Indigenous Studies
  • Global Indigenous Connectivity 

Forum for Indigenous Research Excellence: Forum for Indigenous Research Excellence Logo

Convenor of the Forum for Indigenous Research Excellence (FIRE)

Follow FIRE on Facebook.
Follow on Twitter @FIRE_UOW

Recent FIRE Events

‘Cultured Queer/Queering Cultures: Indigenous Perspectives on Queerness’ 19-20 February 2015. The Symposium was covered by the ABC’s AWAYE program - 

‘Reterritorialising Social Media: Indigenous People Rise Up’ 26-27 February 2015, #RiseUpUOW. The Symposium was also covered by the ABC’s AWAYE program -

Journal of Global Indigeneity

Founder and managing editor: The Journal of Global Indigeneity ( is a unique and innovative digital journal focused on archiving filmed and/or recorded proceedings from symposia, conferences, and workshops on topics that impact the lives of Indigenous peoples and communities around the world. The journal will also publish critical essays related to the symposia themes in an effort to engage with academics and Indigenous communities and to encourage the relationship between theory and praxis – especially as it relates to Indigenous Studies.

Follow JGI on Facebook 

Research Group Membership:

Member of the Working Group on Emergent Indigenous Identities, a collaborative research group with University of Wollongong, University at Albany (State University New York) and Northern Arizona University.

Critical Friend, to the 'Australian Indigenous Studies Learning and Teaching Network'. Funded by the Australian Learning and Teaching Council - Office of Learning and Teaching.

Member - Native American & Indigenous Studies Association (NAISA) 

Member of the Aboriginal Health and Medical Research Council's (AH&MRC) Ethics Committee's External Reference Panel.

Director of The Echidna Group: Indigenous Research and Development Consultancy

Current Research Projects:

Australian Research Council, Discovery (Indigenous) Grant (2016-2018)
Project Title: An Examination of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Help-Seeking Behaviours on Social Media

This research aims to contribute to knowledge of formal and informal help-seeking behaviours amongst Indigenous Australians. Given the rapid uptake of social media by Indigenous Australians, this project specifically aims to investigate help-seeking behaviours online on social media. It is anticipated that the outcomes of this research may directly influence formal help sources in the development of services and programs specifically relevant to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, including health (e.g. suicide prevention), employment, housing, economic opportunities, and legal services. 

Australian Research Council, Discovery (Indigenous) Grant (2013 – 2016)
Project Title: Aboriginal identity and community online: a sociological exploration of Aboriginal peoples' use of social media.

This study explores Aboriginal peoples’ activity on social media, to provide a better understanding of how Aboriginal people make use of online network sites. Social media sites are popular for social and cultural interaction. This project will also explore if there is a continuum between online and offline social and cultural engagements.

ABC Speaking Out interview, available on SoundCloud 

Follow the projects on Facebook, ‘Aboriginal Identity and Community Online’,

CI on a National Health and Medical Research Council grant with Menzies School of Health Research (2016)
Project Title: Social Media to Enhance Indigenous Tobacco Control  

The aim of this project is to understand how social media based approaches can enhance the impact of proven tobacco control strategies among Indigenous Australians.

CI on a NAU Global and Interdisciplinary Research and Teaching Fund (2015-2016)
Project Title: Indigenous popular culture in global context (curriculum project) 

UIC International Links Grant Scheme (2015)
Project Title: Global Indigenous Activism & Social Media Research Network

UIC International Links Grant Scheme (2014-2015)
Project Title: Indigenous Identities in a Global Context: A Collaborative Curriculum Project   

Educational Strategies Development Grant (2014-2016)
Project title: Engaging local Aboriginal communities in curriculum development: Local knowledge: Aboriginal Illawarra and the South Coast

UIC International Links Grant (2014-2015)
Project title: Indigenous identities in a global context: A collaborative curriculum project 

Educational Strategies Development Fund (ESDF) (2013)
Project title: Building Indigenous research capacity: Strengthening pathways for Indigenous students to Higher Degree Research at the University of Wollongong

URC Research Partnership Grant 2013
Project Title: Working with the local Aboriginal community: a pilot investigation of the cultural dimensions of services provided by the Illawarra Aboriginal Medical Service.

Recent Publications:

Searchable RIS Publications

Scholarly Books

Carlson, B. (2016). The Politics of Identity: Who Counts as Aboriginal today?. Aboriginal Studies Press, Canberra.

Harris, M., Nakata, M. & Carlson, B. (Eds.). (2013).  The Politics of Identity: Emerging Indigeneity, University of Technology Sydney E-Press, Sydney. 

Scholarly Book Chapters

Bodkin-Andrews, G. & Carlson, B. (2014). Racism, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander identities, and higher education: Reviewing the burden of epistemological and other racisms¹. In R. Craven & J. Mooney (Eds), Seeding Success in Indigenous Australian Higher Education: What Research Says? United States of America: Emerald Publishing. 

Carlson, B. 2013 ‘The ‘new frontier’: Emergent Indigenous identities and social media’ in Harris, M., Nakata, M. & Carlson, B. The Politics of Identity: Emerging Indigeneity, University of Technology Sydney E-Press, Sydney. Available at,

Harris, M., Carlson, B. and Poata-Smith, E. 2013, 'Indigenous Identities and the Politics of Authenticity' in Harris, M., Nakata, M. & Carlson, B. The Politics of Identity: Emerging Indigeneity, University of Technology Sydney E-Press, Sydney.

Refereed Journal Articles:

Carlson, B., Farrelly, T., Frazer, R. & Borthwick, F. (2015). ‘Mediating Tragedy: Facebook, Aboriginal Peoples and Suicide’, Australasian Journal of Information Systems, vol. 19, Research on Indigenous ICT, pp. 1-15.

Charles, H., Harris, M. & Carlson, B. (2015). ‘Negotiating global and interdisciplinary imperatives for Indigenous education scholarship and pedagogy’, Australian Journal of Indigenous Education, 44(2), 1-8.

Carlson, B. & Frazer, R. (2015). ‘It’s like going to a cemetery and lighting a candle’: Aboriginal Australians, Sorry Business and social media, AlterNative: An International Journal of Indigenous Peoples, 11(3), 211-224.

Carlson, B. (2015). ‘Globalising teaching and learning in Indigenous Studies’, ArtLink, 35(2), 78-80.

Carlson, B., Berglund, J., Harris, M., Poata-Smith, E. (2014). ‘Four scholars speak to navigating the complexities of naming in Indigenous Studies’, Australian Journal of Indigenous Education, 43(1), 58-72.

Bodkin-Andrews, G. & Carlson, B. (2014). ‘The legacy of racism and Indigenous Australian identity within education’, Race, Ethnicity and Education, DOI:

McGloin, C. & Carlson, B. (2013). ‘Indigenous Studies and the politics of language’ Journal of University Teaching and Learning Practice, (10)1

Farrelly, T. & Carlson, B. (2011). ‘Towards cultural competence in the justice sector’, Indigenous Justice Clearinghouse, Current Initiatives Issues Paper 3, June 2011, 1-8. 


Carlson, B. (2014). Well connected Indigenous kids keen to tap new ways to save lives. The Conversation.
Available at: 

Carlson, B.  (2014). Indigenous Australia’s diverse memorialisation of the dead. The Conversation.
Available at:    

Carlson, B. & Poata-Smith, E. (2014). ‘Working with the local Aboriginal community: A pilot investigation of the cultural dimensions of services provided by the Illawarra Aboriginal Medical Service’, University of Wollongong.

Last reviewed: 12 May, 2016