Emeritus Professor Bev Thiele
BA Hons Flinders, PhD Murdoch

About me

I started my career at Murdoch as a fixed-term tutor in 1977 having just graduated from Flinders University in South Australia. I was brought in to teach several Women’s Studies units while their coordinator was on study leave – and I have been here ever since!

I landed my first “real” academic contract in 1983 while studying for my doctorate, and immediately took on the responsibilities of program (academic) chair and student advising.

A first step into being a “good campus citizen” that has been a feature of my academic career ever since.

I have served on more committees and working parties than I care to remember!  Among my more significant contributions to Murdoch governance, prior to stepping into the role of Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) were:

  • Chairing the working parties that developed the new Flexible Delivery model for Murdoch during 2001 and then jointly chairing the first (2002-2005) implementation committee.
  • Serving on the Research Degrees and Scholarships Committee for many years
  • Being the inaugural chair of the Committee for the Review of Research Centres and Areas of Research Strength
  • Serving as the Director of Postgraduate Research in the then Division of ARTS
  • Elected as President of Academic Council for 2008 – 2010

In mid 2010 I became Acting DVC (Academic) before accepting a 2 year appointment in this position in order to guide the University through its second AUQA Audit which subsequently morphed in the University’s first re-registraation with the newly established Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA) Leading up to this appointment, and in the period since, I was been involved in national consultations on the strengthening of the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF); the Teaching and Learning Standards and an advisory board for TEQSA. In mid 2012, as the transition to the new university executive advanced, I stepped down from the DVCA position into the newly created position of PVC (Quality and Standards) to complete the re-registration process. This was successfully achieved in mid 2013, at which point I returned to my substantive position in the School of Arts. I retired at the end of September 2015 and was granted the status of Emeritus Professor in recognition of my lifetime contribution to the University.

Teaching area

I have been fortunate to have spent the largest portion of my Teaching Career in Women’s Studies, and then subsequently in Gender and Cultural Studies. In most years I coordinated and taught 4 units across first year to Honours level. Thus far, I have supervised to successful completion 23 Honors students, 2 Masters and15 Doctoral Candidates.

Research areas

Research Interests remain firmly in the area of feminist theory and gender politics. I have also undertaken a number of consultancies on birthing services and other women’s issues. Major research projects into gender and organisational culture in universities, and the impact of long hours shiftwork on family and community life

Current projects

Developing a Writer’s Retreat, on our property south of Northcliffe.

Awards and grants

Grant and consultancy income of approximately $400,000. Among the larger projects undertaken in collaboration with colleagues are:

1999-2001

Strategic Partnerships with Industry – Research and Training (SPIRT) grant to support an extension of the (unfunded) Gendered Work Cultures in Post-secondary institutions research project to TAFE sector.

1996-7 and 2001

Health Department and NGO Funds to conduct several Evaluations of Western Australian programmes funded under the Commonwealth’s Alternative Birthing Services program.

1996 and 1997

Commonwealth Staff Development Programme Funds to support development and implementation of mentorin programmes for Junior Academic Women and Women into Senior Positions.

Events and speaking engagements

Sept 2010

Chairs of Academic Boards, Annual Meeting, (Darwin) presented paper on “Restructuring Research at Murdoch.”

Mar 2010

Universities Australia, Annual Conference, (Canberra) presented paper to Chairs of Academic Boards/Senates Forum, on “Academic Board/Senate or academics bored/sedated?”

Oct 2007

Osborne Park Hospital – Midwifery Update Program (Perth) presented

Keynote Address

“Opportunities for Hospital Midwives in the New Maternity Services Framework.”

Oct 2006

CSIRO Minerals/Alcoa Research Centre for Stronger Communities Social Dimensions of Mining Colloquium (Perth) presented paper on “Sustaining Family and Community in the face of Long Hours Shiftwork in the Goldfields.’

Jun 2006

Digging Deep for Better Health: Sustainable Futures Research Forum (Hannan’s Club, Kalgoorlie) presented

Keynote Address

A Wider prospect: The Family and Community”


Publications

Books

  • Currie, J., Thiele, B., Harris, P., (2002),Gendered Universities in Globalized Economies - Power, Careers, and Sacrifices,,Lexington Books.

Chapters

  • Currie, J., Thiele, B., (2001),Globalization and Gendered Work Cultures in Universities,In: Gender and the Restructured University: Changing Management and Culture in Higher Education, Open University Press, pages 90 to 115.

Journals

  • Currie, J., Harris, P., Thiele, B., (2000), Sacrifices in greedy universities: are they gendered?, Gender and Education, 12, 3, pages 269 - 291.
  • Thiele, B., (1999), Retrieving the Baby Feminist Theory and Organic Bodies, Canadian Woman Studies, 18, 4, pages 51 - 60.
  • Harris, P., Thiele, B., Currie, J., (1998), Success, Gender and academic Voices. Consuming Passion or Selling the Soul?, Gender and Education, 10, 2, pages 133 - 148.