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A/Prof Inger Mewburn

Australian National University


My name is Dr Inger Mewburn. I’ve been specialising in research education since 2006. I am currently the Director of Research Training at The Australian National University where I run the central transferable skills program and help to shape the ANU research student experience.

I have a background as a designer and a researcher. For over a decade I have worked with PhD students and early career researchers to develop their professional skills. Aside from editing and contributing to the Thesis Whisperer, I write scholarly papers, books and book chapters about research student experiences, with a special interest in the digital practices of academics. I am a regular guest speaker at other universities and do media interviews on request.

I do supervise a small number of PhD and Masters students. I am interested in working with people who want to research graduate student issues, especially employability and social scientists wanting to explore machine learning methods in the social sciences (please read the ANU prospective student page before contacting me about study options).

For further information on my work, a selection from my resume is below. You can view my Linkedin profile, my Amazon author page, or contact me by email via the online form above. For more details on my scholarly work please visit my Google Scholar page or my OrcidID.

I am available for keynotes and interviews: please email me on I do workshops on post PhD employability, publishing, writing, social media, communication and academic survival skills at other universities, for a fee. If you are interested in having me visit your university, see the Training page.

Media Articles: 3

Showing your colours: the good and bad of academics joining political parties

I've always thought being an academic is like living in the middle of an endless war where the weapon of choice is words. You could say the same of parliament, so it is perhaps surprising that relatively few academics go on to have a career in politics, especially when many academics have strong political views. Take education for instance, a discipline I know well. I think it's fair to say that an academic with hardcore right-wing sympathies in education is like a unicorn. Although sightings of such a beast have been...

Read more on The Conversation

Academics behaving badly? Universities and online reputations

Trying to control your reputation online is a bit like trying to clean up wee in a toddler pool. You are much more likely to get your hands dirty than achieve any kind of meaningful damage control. Many universities in Australia are trying to define what is acceptable - and unacceptable - for their staff members to say online. Academics too, are exploring the boundaries between expression of academic freedom and the obligation to their institutions in an age when anything you say or write can be easily posted online. A...

Read more on The Conversation

What's up with universities – Whackademia or just grumpy old academics?

When a friend showed me the blurb for Whackademia: an insider’s account of the troubled university, I immediately left the office to buy a copy, solely on the promise in the title. I read it in just two sittings but finished with conflicted feelings. This book made me angry when I agreed with what it had to say, and even angrier when I disagreed. It starts well; Dr Hil criticises academics for succumbing to a "culture of complaint" about university management, for...

Read more on The Conversation

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