Sociology at Flinders University investigates how people construct experience their everyday lives within an increasingly complex and changing social world.

Our research extends theoretical and applied knowledge across three areas.



Non-normative constructions of relationships, gender, sexuality

Human–animal relationships

Sociological understandings of human-animal relationships require rethinking how people construct social identities and relations. Research in this area includes examining human-animal violence links, animal rights activism, attitudes towards animals and critically engaging with paradigms regarding the place of animals in human society.

View further information about animals in society research.

Intimate and family relationships

Tthe interaction of families and intimate relationships with policy, legal and cultural structures shapes the political, socio-economic and representational present and futures of diverse communities. Research in this area examines how parents manage their relationships with each other and their children after they end an intimate relationship, children’s experiences of living with separated parents, and the dynamics of control and violence in intimate and family relationships.


In providing a critical analysis of the relationship between structure and agency, sociology provides spaces for conceptualising non-normative sexualities and understanding the lived experiences for people with transgender and queer identities.

The sociology of work

The sociology of work examines different aspects of work including occupational structures, the experience of work and the relationship between workers and clients. A cross-cutting theme in this research area focuses on emotions in the workplace. There are two key projects in this area.

Judicial Research Project

The Judicial Research Project (began as the Magistrates Research Project in 1999) is a long-term collaboration between researchers in Sociology and Law. It entails research of unprecedented depth and breadth into the Australian judiciary, their courts and issues affecting judicial officers worldwide.

View further information about the Judicial Research Project.

Aged Care Workforce Project

The Aged Care Workforce Project examines the structural and personal aspects of creating a sustainable workforce for an ageing population. This research has examined the workforce from numerous perspectives, informing policy and practice for over a decade.

National aged care workforce census and survey, 2011

Quality jobs, quality care research project

Decent Work Good Care research project


Political sociology

Political sociology at Flinders provides a sociological analysis of power structures and political life including neo-liberalism, citizenship, social change, public engagement and policy.

  1. Understanding democracy and neo-liberalism
  2. Critical analysis of policy
  3. Social creativity and social change.