A group of social workers and members meet.

Sydney Social Justice Network

A network to foster knowledge for social change
We are a network of academics within and beyond the university who are dedicated to social justice. We create collaborations between businesses, government and the public.

The Sydney Social Justice Network is funded by the Sydney Research Networks Scheme, and aims to foster new ways of creating knowledge for social change. We bring together researchers from across the University who are involved with social justice, as well as outside parties such as private organisations, government groups, and businesses.

Together, we pose challenging questions about social justice, generate discussions and articulate public concerns. This is a space in which researchers and practitioners can gather to connect, discuss issues and share experiences in social justice causes.

Research projects

We have modest funding to support new research collaborations between the University of Sydney and civil society organisations in the field of social justice. Since 2012, the network has supported the following collaborative research projects:

This is a partnership between the University of Sydney and the correctional system that seeks new ways to think about social justice, inequality, crime and education. It is a model of transformative education in which incarcerated people and university students come together to learn as peers in the prison setting.

This project supports local lawyers and access to justice for regional people. This project supports legal professional development, service delivery and research in the region corresponding directly with the University’s Strategic Plan – to ‘develop and implement a coordinated university-wide framework for local and rural community engagement’.

This project seeks to assist scholars, teachers and students to enhance their impact on global poverty by encouraging collaborations with each other and relevant agencies and translating their work into impact through specific intervention projects.

This project organised a one-day workshop at the University of Sydney to bring together academics, community groups, NGOs, service organisations and government officials. The goal was to hear about a range of environmental and climate concerns and, more broadly, to create a network of concerned academics, community members and government officials on environmental and climate justice in NSW.

This forum generated discourse around how best to address the legal and societal gaps in justice in and outside the criminal justice system and how to minimise the trauma of those who have been sexually abused. The forum informed debate about alternative and innovative approaches in responding to child sexual abuse and enhanced services for victims, as well as enhanced research capacity in the field.

This project generated debate on the meaning of social justice for migrant workers in Australia. Given the direction of Australian immigration policy and the challenges migrant workers face, an alternative form of organising that strengthens collaboration between trade unions, NGOs, community-based organisations and other civil society actors is greatly needed. Activities put forward in this proposal seek to deepen the engagement of various actors with the topic of migration to Australia for work.

A collaboration with People with Disability Australia Incorporated, a national peak disability rights and advocacy organisation. As part of this project, the Disability Research Rights Collaboration seeks to build links with Disabled People’s Organisations to develop rights recognition for people with disability in Australia and the Asia-Pacific region.

Our people



Associate Professor Susan Goodwin