Research

Andrea’s research interests are in the area of critical men’s studies, with a particular focus on representations of men and masculinity within various forms of media, and investigating the lived experiences of men. Her research interests include: 

► Critical men’s studies; men’s health; men’s lived experiences, men’s issues; men’s rights movements;
► Sexualisation & pornification debates, sexuality studies, raunch culture; body image;
► Sex, sexuality and gender in the media; postfeminist media cultures; gender, sex, sexuality and pop/fandom culture,
► GLBTIQ issues, social disadvantage; marginalised communities; trans, sex and gender diverse studies

Current Research Projects

‘The ‘Dick Pic’: Exploring Men’s Motivations for Sending Unsolicited Explicit Photos to Women’ (2016)

Funded by a La Trobe School of Psychology and Public Health Small Research Grant Scheme, 2016, this project intends to explore a previously untapped area of research, which is why men send women unsolicited pictures of their genitalia (otherwise known as ‘Dick Pics’) on various social media platforms such as dating websites (i.e. Tinder).  While emerging research has begun to explore women’s experiences of receiving these pictures and consider the social and legal ramifications regarding them (such as prosecuting for sexual harassment), this project is interested in the other side, which is why heterosexual men choose to send them, and what relationship taking pictures of and distributing them to women has on their sense of masculinity, their physical bodies, their sexuality, and their social relationships with women. This first project comprises of a literature review and small cultural analysis concerning how men’s motivations for sending such photos are being framed in contemporary media. 

‘Muscling Up: Australian Men, Sexualisation and Body Image Enhancement’ (2015-2017)

Funded by an ARC Discovery Grant and headed by Prof Gary Dowsett, Dr Duane Duncan and Dr Steven Angelides, this project investigates the body image-enhancing practices of Australian men in relation to broader issues of masculinity and embodied subjectivity in late modernity. In particular, it will explore sexuality as a site of increasing self-reflection. The project will challenge popular readings of men’s body image dissatisfaction as founded on the commonplace that ‘masculinity is in crisis’ by examining changing norms and practices of masculinity and their implications for men’s health and gender order in Australia.

‘Moving On: Mental Health, Resilience and Sexual Recovery among Gay Men Living with Prostate Cancer’ (2015). 

Funded by a beyondblue grant financed by the Movember Foundation, and headed by Prof Gary Dowsett, Dr Duane Duncan and A/Prof Garrett Prestage with research support from Daniel du Plooy, this project explores gay men’s experiences of prostate cancer before, during, and after treatment. It focuses particularly on these men’s experiences of the treatment side-effects of prostate cancer on sexuality and sexual relationships, and the implications of these for their mental health and well-being. The study aims to contribute to building the evidence base for the development of policy, programs and resources by those in the medical, health and community services professions to provide better support for gay men diagnosed with prostate cancer.

‘The Aussie Bloke: Local and Global Mythmaking and the Contemporary Australian Male (2011-2015). 

This PhD research project unpacks the prevalence of iconic masculinities as they infiltrate the Australian consciousness, and determines the extent to which these stereotypes may still hold currency within modern urban Australian society. This is achieved through qualitative content analysis of contemporary Australian media and unpacking the lived experiences of everyday contemporary Australian men. The content analysis from this project were presented at the The Gender Games: Stories in/for the Contemporary World (2012) conference and published in Outskirts: Feminisms Along the Edge and Men and Masculinities. Subsequent articles from this research are in the process of being adapted. She has just recently accepted a book contract to produce a book version of her thesis with Routledge Publishing, entitled White Masculinity in Contemporary Australia: The good ol’ Aussie bloke. 

Collaborations

Andrea is collaborating with Dr James Roffee  in Criminology and Dr Bianca Fileborn at ARCSHS on a series of research projects investigating LGBTIQ experiences of violence, harassment and bullying. 

‘LGBTIQ Experiences of Inner-Community Violence’ (2016-2017) 

Funded by the Arts Faculty Research Project Seed Fund, this project establishes an important new field of research on in-group violence among LGBTIQ people. It seeks to collate and understand LGBTIQ experiences of victimisation and the impacts of internalised homophobic/biphobic/transphobic incidents.This project resonates with national and international research agendas to address LGBTIQ hate-violence and its socio-economic and political impacts, and promote social cohesion. This research intends to examine how LGBTIQ individuals construct personal subjectivities concerning LGBTIQ safe spaces, and the extent to which they experience harassment, abuse and/or discrimination in the LGBTIQ community.

‘Victimisation of LGBTIQ Youth in University Settings’ (2015-2016) 

Funded by a SoSS Research Committee Grant, this project seeks to collate and understand university students’ experiences of victimisation and the impacts of homophobia/biphobia/transphobia and gay-hate crimes on Australian students. Impacts of this victimisation can be significant with research suggesting that distressed LGBTIQ youth are more likely to be engaging in risky behaviours, have less access to much needed resources, and be at a disproportionate risk of suicidal thoughts and attempts. This project intends to address this void by examining the lived experiences of LGBTIQ in tertiary education. Two articles have been published so far from this study in Research Ethics and Safer Communities (forthcoming). 

Social Research

Andrea also engages in producing social research reports for not-for-profit organisations that explore:

► Issues of gender and sexuality
► Measures of mental health & social well-being
► Measures of disability and other forms of disadvantage
► Community development

‘Men’s Sheds: An Insight Into What Works’ (2014)

Her most recent social research project was commissioned to provide a community needs assessment of The Building Healthy Men Project at The Men’s Shed Coniston, run by Healthy Cities Illawarra. The purpose of the project was to help direct future funding initiatives, and provide recommendations for potential changes and improvements to the program. Through a survey and interviews, this research draws attention to the needs of men with Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) backgrounds who attend the shed. 

The results of this study was presented at the 11th Australian National Men’s Health Conference (2015), was funded by a SoSS Research Committee Grant, and was published in Health and Social Care in the Community. 

‘2010 Qualitative Transgender and Transsexual Needs Assessment’ (2010)

In 2010 as part of her field placement at PTS Ottawa, Andrea completed a mixed methods needs assessment of the trans* community of Ottawa to support the larger Transaction Initatives Program. This needs assessment explored the experiences of self-disclosed transgender and transsexual people, asking various questions related to their experiences as a TG/TS person, what services they would like, what services they currently use, geographical locations, ease of use of said services and proper term usage (from their experience and worldview). This assessment examined the level of knowledge, culturally competency, and sensitivity that both self-disclosed transgender and transsexual people have, alongside their views on current services they use.

The data obtained in the assessment was used identify target organizations, groups, businesses, and persons that would benefit from training. Results from this assessment aided in the application for, and awarding of an Ontario Trillium Foundation Grant of $22, 400 to support the project.

Grants & Awards

Academic Research
  • SPPH Small Grant Scheme 2016. Project: ‘‘The ‘Dick Pic’: Exploring Men’s Motivations for Sending Unsolicited Explicit Photos to Women’ (2016)’ Amount: $4996. La Trobe University. 
  • SoSS  Budget Committee Support Scheme 2015. Project: ‘Victimisation of LGBTIQ Youth in University Settings.’ Amount: $1000. Monash University. 
  • SoSS Education Committee Support Scheme 2015. Project: ‘Victimisation of LGBTIQ Youth in University Settings.’ Amount: $500. Monash University. 
  • Arts Faculty Research Project Seed Fund 2016-2017. Project: ‘LGBTIQ Experiences of Inner-Community Violence.’ Amount: $6157. Monash University. 
  • SoSS Research Committee Research Grant 2015. Project: ‘Men’s Sheds: An Insight Into What Works.’ Amount: $1481.11. Monash University. 
  • SoSS Research Committee Research Grant 2015. Project: ‘Victimisation of LGBTIQ Youth in University Settings.’ Amount: $2195. Monash University. 
  • Monash Graduate Scholarship (MGS) 2010-2014. Project: ‘The Aussie Bloke: Investigations of local and global mythmaking and the contemporary Australian male.’ Amount: $22,860 yearly living stipend. Monash University. 
  • Monash International Postgraduate Research Scholarship (MIPRS) 2011-2014. Project: ‘The Aussie Bloke: Investigations of local and global mythmaking and the contemporary Australian male.’ Amount: International Tuition Fee Remission. Monash University. 
  • Faculty of Arts International Postgraduate Research Scholarship (FAIPRS) 2010. Project: ‘The Aussie Bloke: Investigations of local and global mythmaking and the contemporary Australian male.’ Amount: International Tuition Fee Remission. Monash University. 
  • Social Sciences & Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Institutional Undergraduate Student Research Awards (USRA), 2010, Project: ‘Gendered Border Lives: Zimbabweans in Northern South Africa.’ Amount: $8000 for 16 consecutive weeks. Carleton University. 
  • Presidential Scholarship, 2006-2010. Amount: $12,000 towards undergraduate tuition. Carleton University. 
Not-For-Profit/Community Outreach
  • HEY Project. 2015-2016. Project: “Youth Suicide Prevention Project.’ Amount: $80,000. Organisation: Zoe Belle Gender Centre (ZBGC), Auspiced at cohealth.
    • Role: Project Manager, ensuring that the project meets funding criteria, program targets and ZBGC mission/values
  • HEY Project. 2012-2015. Project: “Youth Suicide Prevention Project.’ Amount: $146,000 over 4 years (to be refunded for an additional four years). Organisation: Zoe Belle Gender Centre (ZBGC), Auspiced at CoHealth.
    • Role: Project Manager, ensuring that the project meets funding criteria, program targets and ZBGC mission/values
  • Ontario Trillium Foundation. 2011-12. Project: ‘Transaction Initiative Program.’ Amount: $26, 400 over 6 months. Organisation: Pink Triangle Services (PTS).
    • Role: Preliminary Research & Evaluation, The needs assessment conducted in 2010 aided PTS to secure funding for this program.