Join the School of Humanities and Social Sciences (SHSS) research community and have the ability to influence change in people’s attitudes and actions. 

Get support for your research in an environment that fosters opportunities for meaningful collaboration.

Diverse interest areas to choose from

With 14 interest areas and a supportive network of doctoral supervisors, you'll find your research calling at Deakin's School of Humanities and Social Sciences.

All full list of higher degree by research (HDR) interest areas, supervisors and their expertise, plus current SHSS student projects is available.

Learn about our HDR interest areas

Become a research degree student

If you're interested in studying a master's by research or PhD with the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, learn how to become a research student.

Find out how to become a research degree student

The School of Humanities and Social Sciences undertakes outstanding, internationally recognised research in diverse fields, with expertise in political and ethical theory; contemporary histories; museum studies; human ecology; religious and social change; criminal justice reform; cybercrime; humanitarian and disaster relief; community development; state, national and regional politics and policy issues; international relations; and democracy and democratisation.

Professor Andrew Singleton

Associate Head of School (Research)

Outstanding ERA results

Deakin has one of the country's strongest humanities and social sciences programs. In the Australian Research Council's 2018 Excellence in Research Australian (ERA) assessment, our philosophy, sociology and cultural heritage disciplines were all judged to be above world standard, while political science, criminology, religious studies and history are all of world standard.

We are also deeply committed to taking our research out into the community. In the Engagement and Impact assessment conducted by the Australian Research Council in 2018, we received the highest scores possible for our engagement in the fields of history and archaeology and philosophy and religious studies.

Participate in development opportunities

To help our PhD and master's by research students develop their research skills and advance their theses, we run a number of informative of programs.

Regular HDR seminars are designed to give candidates insight into their colleagues' approaches to research.

Our professional research development seminar series focus on different aspects of the research process and are delivered by senior staff members.

Find out more about our research development programs

Our strategic research centres

The School of Humanities and Social Sciences is closely aligned with the Alfred Deakin Institute for Citizenship and Globalisation (ADI). The Alfred Deakin Institute is a leading humanities and social sciences research institute whose researchers aim to understand the complex meanings of citizenship, social inclusion and globalisation, and investigate the implications of these forces in our lives and communities.

The Institute also hosts the UNESCO Chair, Cultural Diversity and Social Justice and is structured around four research streams:

  • Mobilities, Diversity and Multiculturalism;
  • Governance, Development and Peace;
  • Heritage and Indigeneity; and
  • Culture, Environment and Science.

Learn more about the Alfred Deakin Institute

Deakin Asia-Pacific Research Network

The Deakin Asia-Pacific Research Network (DARPN) is the central point for Asia-Pacific expertise at Deakin University. The network brings together leading experts from across disciplines to develop collaborative cross-disciplinary research that addresses contemporary issues in the Asia-Pacific.

Find out more about the DARPN

Snapshot of current research

Here's a sample of some of the groundbreaking and internationally significant projects currently being undertaken by our researchers.

  • Border security – addressing border security as a way of understanding the co-emergence of offshore detention and onshore enclaves.
  • Urban heritage in times of rapid transformation – considering the various economic, social and political roles that heritage plays in times of rapid change.
  • Online interactions with the dead – exploring increasingly common practices of online memorialisation and commemoration of the dead. 
  • The culture of war: private life and sentiment in Australia – examining the lived experience and agency of civilians in making war between 1914 and 1918.
  • Understanding and addressing racism in Australia – improving conceptual understandings of racism and anti-racism and investigating empirical data on the health and social effects of racism.
  • Surviving the aftermath – investigating violence against women in disaster responses.
  • Unaccompanied minor asylum seekers – exploring narratives of identity.

Contact us

Our HDR coordinator will be happy to help you with any enquiries you might have regarding studying at the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, choosing a discipline or finding a supervisor.

HDR Coordinator
Dr Maree Pardy
+61 3 924 45163
Email Dr Maree Pardy