BA (Hons) (Melbourne); PhD (Melbourne)


Professor Anita Harris is an internationally recognised researcher who has created a new approach to theorising young people’s civic and political participation and has set a fresh theoretical and empirical agenda for addressing gender and cultural diversity in youth studies. She has developed innovative frameworks for theorizing youth citizenship that can account for the diversity of youth experience and conditions of participation in times of rapid global socioeconomic change. Committed to a transformational approach to youth sociology, Harris has not simply sought to enhance inclusion of marginalized groups such as young women or multicultural youth into existing approaches but brought about a paradigmatic shift to inform understandings of contemporary youth identities and communities for social action in a globalized, mobile world. 

Integrating hitherto siloed fields of research to improve social science understandings of young people’s identities, her work has been foundational in establishing much-needed synergistic research agendas between youth sociology and migration and mobility studies; gender studies; and political sociology and political science. Harris’ important conceptual and empirical interventions at these intersections means that she has an exceptional international profile and she is amongst the most highly cited Australian academics in sociology. She has authored multiple books and 100+ other publications in youth sociology and her work is on syllabuses from Chile to Iceland. She has received over .5 million in competitive funding as a CI; including an ARC Future Fellowship, 4 ARC Discovery grants and major category 2-3 funding. Her research career is characterized by international and intergenerational collaborations and a strong commitment to mentoring the next generation of scholars, especially those who are under-represented in the academy.

Her research impact is also reflected in third sector policy and advocacy where it is used to advance a shift towards an everyday strengths-based approach, understanding young people as not just a problem but agents with creative, actionable strategies for social change. Professor Harris is part of a team awarded substantial funding by the Dept of Premier & Cabinet, Victorian Government, to establish the think-and-do Centre for Resilient and Inclusive Societies - within which she is the Deakin leader of the Youth, Diversity and Wellbeing in a Digital Age stream, partnering with government, NGO and industry stakeholders to develop research, programs and policy. Her research on youth participation has been taken up in many policy reports including the UK Cabinet Office, UNICEF, the Australian National Research Organisation for Women’s Safety, the Centre for Social Impact, the First Nations Foundation, and the Centre for Multicultural Youth. Professor Harris has been invited to present over 40 invited keynotes, public lectures and other invited talks at universities and organisations in Australia and internationally.

Research Professor, Alfred Deakin Institute for Citizenship and Globalisation, Deakin University, 2015-

Australian Research Council Future Fellow & Associate Professor, Sociology, Monash University, 2011-2015

Associate Professor, University of Queensland Mid-Career Research Fellow & Deputy Director, Centre for Critical and Cultural Studies, University of Queensland, 2007-2011

Lecturer/Senior Lecturer & Deputy Head, Sociology, Monash University, 2002-2007

Monash University Research Fellow, Women’s Studies, Monash University, 2000-2002

Associate Lecturer/Lecturer, Women’s Studies, Deakin University, 1997-2000

Research Affiliate, the Centre for Urban Youth Research, Carleton University, Canada, 2020-

Adjunct Research Professor, the Youth Lab, Faculty of Education, Victoria University, New Zealand, 2018-

Adjunct Research Professor, School of Social Sciences, Monash University, 2015-2019

Adjunct Research Professor, the Institute for Advanced Studies of the Humanities, University of Queensland, 2011-2015

Future Fellowship 2010 – 2015

Vice Chancellor’s Award for Social Inclusion, Monash University, 2013

University of Queensland Mid-Career Research Fellowship, University of Queensland, 2007-2011

1. Harris, A., Cuervo, H., and Wyn, J. (2021) Thinking About Belonging in Youth Studies, Palgrave: London.

2. Harris, A., Baldassar, L., & Robertson, S. (2020) ‘Settling Down in Time and Place? Changing Intimacies in Mobile Young People’s Migration and Life Courses’, Population, Space and Place, 26 (8)

3. Robertson, S., Harris, A., & Baldassar, L. (2017) ‘Mobile Transitions: A Conceptual Framework for Researching a Generation on the Move’, Journal of Youth Studies, 21(2) 203-217.

4. Idriss, S., Butler. R., & Harris, A. (2021) ‘Interrogating Race, Unsettling Whiteness: Concepts of Transitions, Enterprise and Mobilities in Australian Youth Studies’, Journal of Youth Studies, doi:10.1080/13676261.2021.1948516

5. Harris, A. (2013) Young People and Everyday Multiculturalism, Routledge: New York.