Irish expert on rural issues to address Warrnambool forum

12 March 2010

A visiting Irish expert on rural development will present perspectives of rural women when she addresses a forum at Deakin University’s Warrnambool Campus on Friday 19 March.

Dr Sally Shortall, from Queens University in Belfast, will outline case studies from her world-wide research into rural communities.

Dr Shortall’s main research interests are rural development theory, policy, and practice; social changes in farming practice; and the role of women on farms and in rural development. Her research has included the dairy industry in south-west Victoria.

Associate Professor Kevin O’Toole, from Deakin University’s Faculty of Arts & Education in Warrnambool, said the forum was a great opportunity for people to get a better understanding of the role women play in rural communities and on farms.

“Dr Shortall’s research is very relevant to our region and she is highly regarded world-wide for her research and expertise on rural issues,” he said.

The visit to Warrnambool was organised through the International Rural Network, of which both Associate Professor O’Toole and Dr Shortall are members.

Dr Shortall’s recent research has examined the effects on farm families and rural dwellers of the EU Common Agricultural Policy Reforms and whether area-based development programs foster social inclusion and civic democracy.

Her current work includes research on health and safety on farms, gender proofing of the CAP reforms, and public attitudes to the countryside. She is also undertaking a comparison of US/EU approaches to rural development. Dr Shortall has worked with the European Commission, the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO), and Australian and North American organisations in her research.

The forum will be at 2pm in room J2.27 at Deakin University’s Warrnambool Campus.

While in Australia Dr Shortall will also address the Women in Dairy National Forum on 24 March in Melbourne.

News facts
  • Visit by rural development expert
  • Current work includes research on health and safety on farms
  • Visit organised by the International Rural Network

Media contact

Vanessa Barber
Deakin Media Relations
03 5227 1301; 0488 292 644

Deakin University acknowledges the traditional land owners of present campus sites.

23rd March 2010