Dr Josh Spier

Academic Status

College of Education, Psychology and Social Work

place Education Building
GPO Box 2100, Adelaide 5001, South Australia

Joshua Spier is an Adjunct Research Associate in the College of Education, Psychology and Social Work (EPSW). He holds a BA and a PhD from Flinders University, and a Master of International and Community Development from Deakin University (2011). Joshua is the author of Heidegger and the Lived Experience of Being a University Educator (2018), and a reviewer for several international journals. He offers expertise in the usage of (hermeneutic) phenomenological, ethnographic and action research approaches to research in educational, community and youth work practices.

He brings a strong background in community development and youth work, including establishing the music program for the annual Schoolies Festival, working as the Recreation, Arts and Cultural Development Officer at the City of West Torrens, experience as a Youth Worker for Baptist Care SA, and as former SA Education Coordinator for TEAR Australia.

Joshua has been teaching in higher education since 2007, and has developed and coordinated subjects in community development, youth studies, critical pedagogy and cultural theory. He has advised local governments and education providers on their strategic planning for supporting young people. Alongside academic work, Joshua is a piano-based musician, with several independent releases dating back to 2002.

  • PhD, Flinders University
  • Master of International and Community Development, Deakin University
  • BA (Australian Studies, Sociology, Development Studies), Flinders University
Honours, awards and grants
  • Flinders University Nomination for the Australian Association for Research in Education (AARE) Ray Debus Award for Doctoral Research in Education, 2017
  • Australian Postgraduate Award, 2012-2015
  • Chancellors Letter of Commendation, Flinders University, 2003
Research expertise
Educational change
Higher education studies
Research interests

My research interests focus on contributing fresh understandings of ontological and temporal structures of everyday phenomena across work worlds. I am particularly interested in interpreting qualitative data in light of continental philosophy. Major influences on my analyses to date include Martin Heidegger and Hans-Georg Gadamer. I offer methodological expertise in qualitative methodologies (particularly hermeneutic phenomenological, ethnographic, discourse analysis and action research approaches).

Topic coordinator
SOAD2006 Community Development
AUST3330 Reading Australian Culture
AUST1001 Australian Studies: Identities
Topic lecturer
SOAD2006 Community Development
AUST1001 Australian Studies: Identities
AUST3330 Reading Australian Culture
Supervisory interests
Action research
Community development
Education, philosophy of
Educational sociology and phenomenology
Evaluation of care
Hermeneutic phenomenological studies, especially informed by Heidegger and Gadamer
Higher education
Moral and social philosophy
Phenomenology of learning and teaching in higher education
Philosophy of education
Qualitative research methodology
Youth studies
Higher degree by research supervision
Associate supervisor: Health (Paramedic Practice) (1)
Higher degree by research student achievements
Susan Furness

Best Postgraduate Research Presentation, Paramedics Australasia International Conference - NOV 2017


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