Keynote Presenters

Associate Professor Melinda Webber
Ngati Whakaue, Ngati Kahu, Ngati Hau

Dr Melinda Webber is an Associate Professor and Research Director of The Starpath Project in the Faculty of Education at the University of Auckland, New Zealand. She is a former Fulbright/Nga Pae o te Maramatanga Indigenous Scholar who has published widely on the nature of ethnic identity development, examining the ways race, ethnicity, culture and identity impact the lives of young people ­ particularly Maori students . In 2016, Melinda was awarded a prestigious Marsden Fast-Start grant to undertake a research project examining the distinctive identity traits of Ngāpuhi, New Zealand’s largest iwi. Melinda had a sole-authored book published in 2008 by New Zealand Council of Educational Research titled 'Walking the space between: Maori/Pakeha identity' and recently co-edited a book titled 'Sociocultural realities: Exploring new horizons' in 2015. 


Te mauri, te mana, me te pūmanawatanga: Grassroots perspectives of Maori ‘wellbeing’
One of the greatest challenges facing Māori students’ participation in education concerns the restoration and experience of cultural pride and efficacy in their lives. Low teacher expectations of Māori students, ruinous media misrepresentation, and internalised deficit thinking by Māori students themselves, is a major reason Māori under-participation in education exists and persists. In this presentation, I focus on how Māori identity development affects the wellbeing, motivation and academic engagement of Māori students. I argue that little will be done to improve Māori students' academic engagement, until educators focus specifically on the development of students’ connectedness to their cultural identity, and their sense of mauri and mana. Along with describing Māori identity development, the importance and manifestation of mana in Māori students’ lives, and other social-psychological issues facing gifted Māori students, I offer solutions for change using the findings of the Ka Awatea study (Macfarlane, Webber, McRae and Cookson-Cox, 2014). Five mātauranga (educational) themes concerning the personal, familial, school and community conditions for Maori student wellbeing and ‘success’ are discussed: Mana Whānau (familial pride), Mana Motuhake (personal pride and a sense of embedded achievement), Mana Tū (tenacity and self-esteem), Mana Ūkaipo (belonging and connectedness) and Mana Tangatarua (the ability to utilize multi-cultural knowledge).

Associate Professor Jen Gilbert

Jen Gilbert is Associate Professor of Education at York University in Toronto, Canada. Her research focuses on sexuality education, LGBTQ issues, and youth studies. She is author of Sexuality in School: The Limits of Education (University of Minnesota Press, 2014) and co-editor with Sharon Lamb of the forthcoming volume, The Cambridge Handbook of Sexual Development: Childhood and Adolescence.


What we talk about when we talk about consent
Consent is the new buzzword in sex ed—it is a hallmark of progressive sexual health education policy, instruction, and curriculum reform. This shift reflects a growing consensus across secondary school, college, and university campuses that sexual health education must acknowledge that the risks of sex extend beyond disease or unplanned pregnancy to include assault. In this shift, consent is the solution to sexual violence; rape culture should be replaced by a consent culture. In this talk, I take a closer look at the language of consent in sexual health education. What challenges and opportunities does the language of consent offer to the field of sexual health education? What pedagogical work does consent do? And how, through the language of consent, do we understand the risks and pleasures of sexuality?

Deborah Lupton joined the University of Canberra in early 2014 as a Centenary Research Professor associated with the News & Media Research Centre in the Faculty of Arts & Design. Her research and teaching is multidisciplinary, incorporating sociology, media and communication and cultural studies. Deborah has previously held academic appointments at the University of Sydney, Charles Sturt University and the University of Western Sydney.

Deborah is the author of 16 books and over 160 journal articles and book chapters on topics including the social and cultural dimensions of: medicine and public health; risk; the body; parenting cultures; digital sociology; food; obesity politics; and the emotions. She is an advocate of using social media for academic research and engagement, including Twitter (@DALupton) and her blog This Sociological Life. Deborah was one of the founding co-editors of the journal Health, and currently serves on that journal's editorial board, as well as those of the journals Health, Risk & Society, Journal of Sociology, Fat Studies, Digital Health, Social Theory & Health, Health Sociology Review, Societies and Big Data & Society.


Critical Digital Health Studies Meets New Materialism
Schools are increasingly employing digital technologies such as wearable devices, mobile apps and other software to teach students about their bodies, fitness and health. In this presentation, I will discuss the field of what I dub ‘critical digital health studies’, and how new materialism theories can contribute to this area of research. The field of critical digital health studies takes a sociocultural and political approach to analysing the raft of digital health technologies that have been advocated as a way of helping people become more ‘engaged’ health citizens, including young people in school settings. New materialism theories provide a way of conceptualising and researching the human-nonhuman engagements that take place when people interact with ‘smart’ devices and software, including the sensory, affective and other embodied and more-than-representational dimensions of these engagements. I will provide some examples from my current research to illustrate my presentation and demonstrate its contribution to critical health education studies.

Professor Peter Aggleton NSW CHESS Conference 2018

Conference Rapporteur

Professor Peter Aggleton
University of New South Wales

Professor Peter Aggleton is an internationally renowned sociologist and educationalist with a background in policy studies, psychology and international health.

A University of New South Wales (UNSW) Scientia Professor, he has worked with national, international and UN system agencies for over twenty-five years to strengthen international and national responses to HIV and sexual health. Peter has published over 200 scientific papers and authored and edited more than 50 books.  His lifetime research grant income is in excess of $40 million and he one of the most cited social scientists globally, with a Hirsch (h-) index of 56. He is well known both internationally and in Australia for his analytic work on health education and health promotion, the social aspects of HIV, sexuality and gender, and sexual and reproductive health and rights. He is currently chief investigator on research projects funded by the Australian Research Council and the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council.

Peter is editor-in-chief of three world class peer reviewed journals: Culture, Health & Sexuality, Health Education Journal and Sex Education, and is an associate editor of the journals AIDS Education & PreventionGlobal Public Health and Health Education Research.