Researcher biography

Lynda is a professor of sociology with more than 30 years of experience and training. She first studied sociology in the UK where she obtained her Bachelors degree from the University of Wales. After moving to Australia, she completed a PhD in sociology from Central Queensland University before taking up a position at The University of Queensland. From 2011-15 she was an Australian Research Council Future Fellow. She also established and directed Australia's first qualitative data archive. She now combines her teaching and research with a position as Deputy Head of School and Head of Sociology in the School of Social Science.

Lynda undertakes research in the areas of community, neighbourhoods and housing. More specifically, she examines how people live and interact in contemporary local communities; how structural and policy processes impact upon those communities and the relationships that play out within them; and the consequences of these changing social dynamics for well-being, feelings of attachment to home and place, conflict, social exclusion and cohesion. She has undertaken her research in a variety of settings including rural areas; remote fly-in, fly-out mining communities; outer-suburban master planned estates; inner-city gentrifying suburbs; low-income neighbourhoods; and new housing developments for older public housing tenants and people with severe and persistent mental health challenges.

Lynda is presently leading a programme of research on 'un-neighbourliness' which examines the nature, causes and outcomes of problems between neighbours and their effects on neighbouring more broadly. Funded by a UQ Foundation Research Excellence Award and an ARC Discovery grant, she and colleagues are exploring how processes of urban change, such as urban consolidation and gentrification influence neighbour relations, and how neighbouring is enacted in different residential contexts. The results of this study have implications for councils trying to respond to rising neighbour complaints; social housing providers managing disputes between tenants; and for urban planning and community resilience policies. She is also an international partner on the ESRCs' Connected Communities consortium (Crow et al) and the Wales Institute of Social and Economic Research, Data and Methods (WISERDII).

Lynda welcomes inquiries from prospective Honours or Higher Degree Research students who are interested in working with her on any of these, or related, topics.

Areas of research