Dr Catherine Smith

Dr Catherine Smith

Postdoctoral Fellow

PhD, Anthropology - Australian National University

Master of International Studies (Peace and Conflict Studies) - University of Queensland

Bachelor of Social Science (Honours in Anthropology) - James Cook University

Medicine & Health
School of Population Health

I’m a medical anthropologist and public health social scientist, with a special interest in health and social equity, the socio-political drivers of health and illness, and the development of institutional trust in healthcare.

I am currently a research fellow in the UNSW School of Population Health, where I am supporting a team-based project researching the uptake of big data in Australian public health, with a particular focus on how big data analytics and the development of government-regulated integrated data infrastructures might influence social and health equity.

In addition I have long-term in-country experience in Indonesia, carrying out critical and applied medical anthropological research. I have also carried out research and consultancy to contribute social scientific perspectives to transnational infectious disease elimination programs (specifically malaria elimination).

I'm an advocate for more socially attuned public health, including through the application of social scientific methods and theory to public health.

  • Books | 2018
    Smith C, 2018, Resilience and the Localisation of Trauma in Aceh, Indonesia, NUS Press
  • Journal articles | 2023
    Smith C; Vajdic CM; Stephenson N, 2023, 'Centring equity in data-driven public health: a call for guiding principles to support the equitable design and outcomes of Australia's data integration systems', Medical Journal of Australia, 218, pp. 341 - 343, http://dx.doi.org/10.5694/mja2.51902
    Journal articles | 2023
    Smith C; Vajdic CM; Stephenson N, 2023, 'Techno-legal expertise and the datafication of the state: Big data, accountability and the value of a social license with institutional roots', Futures, 154, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.futures.2023.103263
    Journal articles | 2023
    Smith C, 2023, 'Through the Body of the Midwife', Cultural Anthropology, 38, http://dx.doi.org/10.14506/ca38.4.03
    Journal articles | 2022
    Stephenson N; Smith C; Vajdic CM, 2022, 'Health and public sector data sharing requires social licence negotiations', Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health, 46, pp. 426 - 428, http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/1753-6405.13261
    Journal articles | 2020
    Smith C, 2020, 'The structural vulnerability of healthcare workers during COVID-19: Observations on the social context of risk and the equitable distribution of resources', Social Science and Medicine, 258, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.socscimed.2020.113119
    Journal articles | 2016
    Smith C, 2016, 'The Salt of the Earth [DVD]', Asia Pacific Journal of Anthropology, 17, pp. 92 - 94, http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14442213.2015.1077541
    Journal articles | 2015
    Smith C, 2015, 'A stranger in one’s own home: Surveillance, space, place, and emotion during the GAM conflict in Aceh', Indonesia, 2015, pp. 53 - 76, http://dx.doi.org/10.5728/indonesia.100.0053
    Journal articles | 2015
    Smith C, 2015, 'Doctors that Harm, Doctors that Heal: Reimagining Medicine in Post-Conflict Aceh, Indonesia', Ethnos, 80, pp. 272 - 291, http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00141844.2013.831368
    Journal articles | 2015
    Smith C, 2015, 'Ten years of peace, bravery and resilience in Aceh', Anthropology Today, 31, pp. 12 - 15, http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/1467-8322.12199
    Journal articles | 2015
    Whittaker M; Smith C, 2015, 'Reimagining malaria: five reasons to strengthen community engagement in the lead up to malaria elimination', Malaria Journal, 14, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12936-015-0931-9
    Journal articles | 2014
    Smith C; Whittaker M, 2014, 'Beyond mobile populations: A critical review of the literature on malaria and population mobility and suggestions for future directions', Malaria Journal, 13, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1475-2875-13-307
    Journal articles | 2014
    Smith C; Whittaker M, 2014, 'Malaria elimination without stigmatization: A note of caution about the use of terminology in elimination settings', Malaria Journal, 13, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1475-2875-13-377
    Journal articles | 2012
    Whittaker M; Smith C, 2012, 'Findings of the literature review on mobility, infectious diseases and malaria', Malaria Journal, 11, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1475-2875-11-s1-p101

I was previously the recipient of an ARC DECRA - Discovery Early Career Award, in addition to an Endeavour Award, and numerous smaller grants.