Dr Nicole CuratoAssociate Professor


Address: Building 23, Level B University of Canberra Phone: + 61 (0) 2 6201 5996


Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance


Institute for Governance and Policy Analysis at the University of Canberra

Research Interests

Deliberative democracy; contemporary social theory; fringe forms of political participation; qualitative methods

Connect with Nicole


Nicole Curato is a Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance. She is the author of the book Democracy in a Time of Misery: From Spectacular Tragedies to Deliberative Action (2019, Oxford University Press) and Power in Deliberative Democracy: Norms, Forums, Systems (2019, Palgrave, with Marit Hammond and John Min).

She is the recipient of Australian Research Council’s Discovery Early Career Research Award (2015-2018) for her work on democratic innovations in post-disaster situations. Her work has been published academic journals in the fields of politics, policy and sociology, and has been featured in international media including the New York Times, Financial Times, the New Yorker, the Wall Street Journal, and Al Jazeera, among others. She is currently an Associate Editor of the journal Political Studies.

Prior to her appointment at the University of Canberra, she was a postdoctoral research fellow at the Australian National University (ANU). She held visiting fellowships at the University of Uppsala (Sweden), University of Turku (Finland), and the University of Stuttgart (Germany). She is an associate of the Sydney Democracy Network.

Aside from her academic work, Nicole is actively engaged in various creative projects. She is the Philippines Editor of New Mandala (ANU’s website for Southeast Asian perspectives), conceptualizes and hosts television specials for CNN Philippines, and regularly writes for mainstream press.

She tweets @NicoleCurato and maintains @DelDemUCan, the Centre’s official twitter account.


Research Grants

A Meta-Study of Democratic Deliberation: Updating Theory and Practice

Co-Investigator (2018-2020)

Funded by the Australian Research Council Discovery Project ($526,411)

Beyond Demagogues and Deplorables: Transforming populist rhetoric for participatory futures

Primary Investigator (2018-2020)

Funded by the Toyota Foundation ($19,500)

Who Will Bury the Dead? Community Responses in Duterte’s Bloody War on Drugs

Primary Investigator (2017-2018)

Funded by the Australian National University’s Philippines Project and Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade ($14,000).

Understanding and Evaluating Deliberative Systems

Co-Investigator (2016-2017)

Funded by DAAD (Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst) German Academic Exchange Service ($12,500).

Building Back Better: Participatory Governance in a Post-Haiyan World

Discovery Early Research Career Award (2015-2018)

Funded by the Australian Research Council ($324,557).

Humanitarian Technologies: An Ethnographic Assessment of Communication Environments in Disaster Recovery and Humanitarian Intervention

Co-Investigator (2014-2015)

Funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (UK) Urgency Grant (£157,323.09/$267,524).





  1. Curato, N. (In press) Democracy in a Time of Misery: From Spectacular Tragedy to Deliberative Action. Oxford: Oxford University Press
  2. Curato, N., Hammond, M. and Min, J. (In press) Power in Deliberative Democracy: Norms, Forums, Systems. New York: Palgrave MacMillan.

Edited Book

  1. Curato N. (ed.) (2017) The Duterte Reader: Critical Essays on Rodrigo Duterte’s Early Presidency. Ithaca: Cornell University Press/Quezon City: Ateneo de Manila University Press.

Journal Articles

  1. Curato, N. and Calamba, S.J. (forthcoming) Surviving disasters by suppressing political storms: Participation as knowledge-transfer in community-based disaster governance. Critical Sociology.
  2. Curato, N. (forthcoming) From Authoritarian Enclaves to Deliberative Utopia? Governance logics in post-disaster reconstruction. Disasters.
  3. Curato, N. (2018) Beyond the Spectacle: Slow-Moving Disasters in post-Haiyan Philippines. Critical Asian Studies 50(1): 58-66.
  4. Curato, N. (2017) We haven’t even buried the dead yet: The ethics of discursive contestation in a crisis situation. Current Sociology 65(7): 1010-1030
  5. Curato, N., Dryzek, J. S., Ercan, S., Hendriks, C. and Niemeyer, S. (2017). Twelve Key Findings in Deliberative Democracy Research. Daedalus 146(3):28-38.
  6. Curato, N. (2017) Flirting with Authoritarian Fantasies? Rodrigo Duterte and the New Terms of Philippine Populism. Journal of Contemporary Asia 47(1): 142-153.
  7. Curato, N. (2016) Politics of Anxiety, Politics of Hope: Penal Populism and Duterte’s Rise to Power. Journal of Contemporary Southeast Asian Affairs, 35(3): 91-109.
  8. Curato, N. and Böker, M. (2016) Linking mini-publics to the deliberative system: A research agenda. Policy Sciences 49(2): 173-190.
  9. O’Flynn, I. and Curato, N. (2015) Deliberative Democratization: A Framework for Systemic Analysis. Policy Studies 36(3): 298-313.
  10. Felicetti, A., Niemeyer, S. and Curato, N. (2015) Improving Deliberative Participation: Connecting Mini-Publics to Deliberative Systems. European Political Science Review 8(3): 427-448.
  11. Curato, N. (2015) Deliberative capacity as indicator of democratic quality: The case of the Philippines. International Political Science Review, 36(1): 99-116.
  12. Curato, N. and Ong, J.C. (2015) Inclusion as Deliberative Agency: The Selective Representation of Poor Women in Debates and Documentaries about Reproductive Health. Television and New Media, 16(6):576-594.
  13. Curato, N. and Ong, J.C. (2015) Disasters can lift veils: Five Issues for Sociological Disaster Studies. Philippine Sociological Review 63(S1):1-26.
  14. Curato, N. (2014) Participation without deliberation: The crisis of Venezuelan democracy. Journal of Democratic Theory, 1(2): 113-121
  15. Curato, N. and Niemeyer, S. (2013) Reaching out to overcome political apathy: Building participatory capacity through deliberative engagement. Politics and Policy, 41(3): 355-383.
  16. Curato, N., Niemeyer, S. and Dryzek, J. (2013) Appreciative and contestatory inquiry in deliberative forums: Can group hugs be dangerous? Critical Policy Studies, 7(1): 1-17
  17. Curato, N. (2013) Classical Reading of Classical Sociological Theory. Philippine Sociological Review 61(S1): 265-288.
  18. Curato, N. (2012) A Sequential Analysis of Democratic Deliberation. Acta Politica, 47(4): 423-442.
  19. Curato, N. (2012) Respondents as Interlocutors: Translating Deliberative Democratic Principles to Qualitative Interviewing Ethics. Qualitative Inquiry, 18(7): 7 571-582.

Book Chapters

  1. Curato, N. (Forthcoming) Beyond Demagogues and Deplorables: Democratising Populist Rhetoric in Rodrigo Duterte’s Philippines’ in ‘I Am A People’: The Performance and Cross-Regional Praxis of Populism’, P. Ostiguy, F. Panizza and B. Moffitt (eds.)  Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 
  2. Webb, A. and Curato, N. (Forthcoming) ‘Liberal Anxieties, Ambivalent Citizens: Insurgent Nationalism and Promise of Redemption in Rodrigo Duterte’s Philippines’ in Populism Around the World, D. Stockemer (ed). Berlin: Springer.
  3. Curato, N. and Ong, J.C. (Forthcoming) ‘Who laughs at a rape joke? Crass politics and ethical responsiveness in Rodrigo Duterte’s Philippines,’ in Ethical Responsiveness and the Politics of Difference, T. Dreher and A. Mondal (eds.) New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
  4. Curato, N. and Steiner, J. (Forthcoming) ‘Deliberative Democracy and Comparative Democratisation Studies,’ in Oxford Handbook of Deliberative Democracy, J. Dryzek, J. Mansbridge, A. Bächtiger and M. Warren (eds.) Oxford: Oxford University Press.
  5. Curato, N., Ong, J.C. and Longboan, L. (2016) ‘Protest as Interruption of the Disaster Imaginary: Overcoming Voice-Denying Rationalities in Post-Haiyan Philippines,’ in Taking the Square: Mediated Dissent and Occupations of Public Space, M. Rovisco and J. Ong (eds.) London: Rowman and Littlefield.
  6. Curato, N. (2010) ‘Democratic Possibilities: The Venezuelan Experience’ in Participation, State and the People, B. Howe, V. Popovski and M. Notaras (eds.), Tokyo: United Nations University Press.

Book Review

  1. Curato, N. (2016) Deliberative Mini-Publics: Innovating Citizens in the Democratic Process, K. Grönlund, A. Bächtiger and M. Setälä (eds.) Colchester: ECPR Press in Perspectives on Politics.


Commentaries (select list)

  1. In the Philippines, All the President’s People, The New York Times
  2. The Philippines Beyond the Dark Spell, Asia Global Online
  3. Burial fit for a thief, CNN Philippines
  4. The Deeper Dynamics of Duterte’s Dug War, East Asia Forum
  5. Seven Days of Duterte, East Asia Forum
  6. Deliberative Democracy Must Rise to Populist Rhetoric, The Conversation (co-authored with L.J. Parry)
  7. The Philippines cannot build a nation over the bodies of 100,000 dead in Duterte’s War on Drugs, The Conversation

Interviews with Australian media (select list)

  1. Criticism of Rodrigo Duterte's 'war on drugs' grows, after the death of a teenage boy, Radio National
  2. Duterte refuses to step back from controversial war on drugs, ABC The World
  3. Philippine President admits killing suspected criminals, ABC The World
  4. Duterte lashes out at United Nations, ABC The World

Interviews with international media (select list)

  1. #BabaeAko: Is President Duterte’s behaviour sexist, or ‘taken out of context’? The Stream, Al Jazeera
  2. Philippines elections: Rhetorically similar but don't confuse Duterte and Trump, France 24
  3. Duterte Harry: The Philippines and its unconventional president-elect, France 24
  4. What Duterte’s Victory Could Mean for the Philippines, Bloomberg
  5. Begging for life: From Manila to Malmo, People and Power, Al Jazeera
  6. Of profanity and public trust: Why Duterte remains popular, ABS-CBN News Channel
  7. Duterte’s most powerful weapon: Unrelenting supporters, ABS-CBN News Channel
  8. Rodrigo Duterte, Trump of the East, Populism Observer
  9. Narendra Modi and ASEAN, NewsX India

Creative Outputs


  1. Philippines Beyond Clichés, host and producer for New Mandala
  2. How will Duterte lead the Philippines? guest for La Trobe Asia’s Asia Rising podcast
  3. Deliberation, Culture, Context, guest producer for Real Democracy Now


  1. The Mayors of Tacloban, producer for (with Patricia Evangelista)
  2. Duterte’s State of the Nation Address 2018: Scholars’ Debrief, host and producer for New Mandala
  3. A conversation with Jonathan Miller, author of Duterte Harry: Fire and Fury in the Philippines, host and producer for New Mandala
  4. Free Speech and Dutertismo, guest for Filipino Freethinkers
  5. Analysis of Duterte’s State of the Nation, guest for Filipino Freethinkers
  6. Trump is President, Marcos is a Hero, guest for Filipino Freethinkers
  7. Are women equal in the Philippines, guest for Filipino Freethinkers
  8. Is marriage equality really an LGBT victory? guest for Filipino Freethinkers

Documentaries and talk shows

  1. Insights, hosted a documentary on mental health for start-up digital media organisation Fyt
  2. Meet the Millennials, host and writer for a roundtable discussion on the sociology of youth for CNN Philippines
  3. Breaking Fake News, host and writer for a roundtable discussion on the political economy of fake news for CNN Philippines (awarded ‘Best Television Special’ by the Broadcasters Association of the Philippines)

Digital exhibits

  1. Imagined President for (with Patricia Evangelista)
  2. Pressing for Freedom: Letters from the Field. Editor for BroadAgenda, co-published by, Malaysiakini and Asia Correspondent

Primary Supervisor

Mohammad Abdul-Hwas, University of Canberra

Panel Member

Nardine Nemr, University of Canberra

Emerson Sanchez, University of Canberra

Lala Muradova, KU Leuven

Completed PhD projects

Dr Pia Rowe, University of Canberra

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