Associate Professor Erin O'Brien

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  • Well if Twitter isn’t dying, this is clearly a sign that I should share more puppy pics! https://t.co/IKUF4h8W20
  • RT @larellec: Evaluating the Modern Slavery Act in Australia: QUT researchers form a multi-talented team to offer comment on govt review, l…

PhD (University of Queensland), MA (University of Durham)

Dr Erin O’Brien is an Associate Professor and ARC DECRA Fellow in the School of Justice, Queensland University of Technology. Her research examines political activism, advocacy, and participation with a focus on political consumerism.  Dr O'Brien's current research examines the political mobilisation of consumers, shareholders and investors on a range of social justice issues including modern slavery and environmental degradation.

Her Australian Research Council DECRA Fellowship (2021-2024) titled 'Australian civil society combating modern slavery with ethical consumerism' examines the shift in the framing of responsibility between the state, civil society, and corporate actors, and the norm adoption of ethical consumerism as a solution to complex multi-jurisdictional issues.

Dr O'Brien is concerned with studying the interplay between activists and the state in the construction of knowledge and formation of policy, with research interests in the following areas:

  • Political activism, advocacy and resistance
  • Political consumerism, shareholder activism, ethical consumption
  • Tactics and influence of political interest groups
  • Political narrative and storytelling
  • Modern slavery and human trafficking

Dr O'Brien is the co-leader of the Activism and Politics Research Group at QUT, and Chief Investigator in the QUT Centre for Justice and QUT Centre for Decent Work and Industry. She is currently supervising PhD projects on activism, political consumerism, and narrative politics in relation to modern slavery, youth social movements, and extremism.

Background Erin has a PhD in Political Science from the University of Queensland, a MA in Social Policy from the University of Durham, UK, and a BA (Honours) in International Relations from the University of Queensland, Australia. Prior to entering academia, Erin worked in strategic communications in the government and not-for-profit sectors in Australia and the United Kingdom.

Books

  • Challenging the Human Trafficking Narrative: Victims, Villains, and Heroes, by Erin O'Brien. Routledge 2019.
  • The Politics of Sex Trafficking: A Moral Geography, by Erin O'Brien, Sharon Hayes and Belinda Carpenter. Palgrave Macmillan 2013.
  • Crime, Justice and Social Democracy: International Perspectives, edited by Kerry Carrington, Matthew Ball, Erin O'Brien and Juan Tauri. Palgrave Macmillan 2013.

For a full list of publications  visit QUT ePrints

Additional information

Type
Recipient of an Australia Council Grant or Australia Council Fellowship
Reference year
2021
Details
Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA) Fellowship
Type
Academic Honours, Prestigious Awards or Prizes
Reference year
2020
Details
Vice-Chancellor's Award for Teaching and Research Excellence
Title
Australian Civil Society Combating Modern Slavery with Ethical Consumerism
Primary fund type
CAT 1 - Australian Competitive Grant
Project ID
DE210100735
Start year
2021
Keywords
Title
Strategies for Improving Labour Conditions Within the Australian Cotton Value Chain
Primary fund type
CAT 1 - Australian Competitive Grant
Project ID
QUT1903 (1819FRP051)
Start year
2019
Keywords
X