Meet your Potential Supervisors

Nicole Curato

I am currently in the final stages of completing my first book manuscript, entitled Democracy in a Time of Misery: From Slow Violence to Deliberative Politics. This book presents the empirical findings and theoretical reflections based on my three-year ethnographic work among disaster-affected communities in the Philippines, as part of my ARC-DECRA project. I am also working on a co-authored book entitled Power in Deliberative Democracy: Norms, Forums, Systems (Palgrave, 2018) which provides a comprehensive account of the role of power in the theory and practice of deliberative democracy.

I am keen to supervise PhD students whose intellectual curiosity lie in problematizing our taken for granted assumptions about democratic practice using a theoretical or empirical lens. I am interested in projects that focus on ‘sensitive political contexts’ such as post-disaster or post-conflict societies, as well as research that critically examines democratic and authoritarian innovations in the global south.

I am currently in the PhD panel of Emerson Sanchez and Roger Davis, and one of our Institute’s most well-published PhD graduate, Dr. Pia Rowe.  

Contact: Nicole.Curato | at | | @NicoleCurato 


John Dryzek

John Dryzek can supervise PhD projects in the areas of environmental politics, deliberative global governance, and political theory. His past PhD students have gone on to academic positions at institutions such as the University of Sydney, University of Melbourne, Australian National University, Griffith University, University of Canberra, University of Georgia, and University of Oslo. He is unavailable to take on new students in 2018, but 2019 is a possibility.

Contact: John.Dryzek | at |


Selen Ercan

I work in the area of deliberative democracy focusing particularly on the capacity of this approach in addressing intractable conflicts in contemporary societies. My research sits at the intersection of normative political theory and empirical political research, and seeks advance both through a close study of real life problems such as identity conflicts, gender and racial injustices and polarised policy debates.

My recent work examines the alternative forms of political participation in the context of broader transformations in contemporary democracies. Currently I am also working on a co-authored book manuscript entitled ‘Democratic Reform beyond the Forum’ which seeks to formulate a deliberative response to the current problems and state of democracy. 

I am interested in supervising PhD students in the areas of: democracy broadly defined, new forms of citizen engagement, democratic innovations, protest movements, and identity politics.

I am currently involved in the PhD panels of Jane Alver as a primary supervisor; Kei Nishiyama as a secondary supervisor; and Thaneshwar Bhusal as an advisor.  

Contact: Selen.Ercan | at | | @selenAercan


Simon Niemeyer

My work spans across a number of areas of deliberative democracy, as well as environmental governance. An important focus involves empirical analysis of individual behaviour in political settings and developing theories that link the citizen to deliberative democratic systems. Much of this work has involved observation of citizen deliberation within deliberative minipublics using specifically developed analytical methods to understand the nature of deliberative transformation. The observations have contributed to important theoretical insights in the field. 

In short I cover the whole spectrum between the citizen and deliberative systems and the institutional arrangements that mediate the relationships within that system. The research in environmental governance builds on insights about citizens to explore the relationship between democracy and the environment — from local to global.

I am keen to work with emerging scholars who are interested in conducing multidisciplinary research across the spectrum from the deliberative citizen to deliberative systems and all aspects in between. Research in this space that links to questions relating to environmental governance is of particular interest.

I have acted on seven supervisory panels across a diverse array of topics concerning deliberative democracy as well as environmental governance and am keen to work with scholars interested in innovative research.

Contact: Simon.Niemeyer | at | | @simonniemeyer