PhD Supervision

Renata undertakes funded research and provides opportunities for her students to be involved in all facets of the research process, from writing grants for external research funding to joint publications, to develop the skills needed to establish successful research careers within and outside of academia.

Renata welcomes enquiries from postgraduate students wishing to pursue research in the following areas:

  • Social and cultural studies into experiences of health and illness (including experiences of dementia, autism, cancer, and illnesses diagnosed as psychiatric conditions)
  • Phenomenology of illnesses diagnosed as psychiatric conditions
  • Social and cultural studies of therapeutic culture (including in psychiatry)

Current PhD projects

 Johnston-Ataata photo painting



Kate Johnston-Ataata

Using in-depth interviews and an interpretative phenomenological approach, Kate’s research explores experiences of partnering and becoming parents among Australian / Tongan intercultural couples in Australia. Supervisors: Renata Kokanovic & Mark Davis.

Hart photo





Caroline Hart

Using qualitative methodologies, Caroline’s research explores the medicalisation of childhood, set within a children’s rights framework. This research aims to contribute to the understanding of the impact of a mental health diagnosis on a child and her or his family, and the broader community. Supervisors: Renata Kokanovic & Mark Davis.

Nicholas Hill

Nicholas’ doctoral research is exploring how individuals negotiate contemporary life, their experiences of health and illness and how they attempt to live ‘the good life’. He has a particular interest in social theory, emotional health and wellbeing, and qualitative research. Supervisors: Renata Kokanovic & Mark Davis.

PhD Completions

Caroline Johnson (2015): An exploration of monitoring people with depression in the general practice setting. Supervisors: J Gunn (Main), R Kokanovic (Co-supervisor)

Brigid Philip (2010): Governing depression in Australia: A Foucauldian analysis of policy documents, mental health literacy materials, and self-help books.  Supervisors: T Majorbanks (Main), A Little (Co-supervisor), R Kokanovic (Co-supervisor)