Dr Charlotte   Smedley
Adjunct Lecturer

Dr Charlotte Smedley

Arts,Design & Architecture
Social Policy Research Centre

Charlotte Smedley is a Lecturer in Social Work and Social Research and Policy at the School of Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, UNSW.

Her research interests are the role of the media in representations of people seeking asylum and refugees, statelessness and disability.

Charlotte's PhD examined the role of media, policy and allied health training in the construction of the identity of people with a disability using discourse analysis to conduct this tripartite research. The key argument of the thesis was that despite the importance of the social model of disability the apparent dominance of the medical model reduced the voices of people with a disability scaffolding them into dominant stereotypes  which were not reflective of their articulated identities. 

Research Areas

  • Representations of disability in media, government and health professional discourse
  • Accessibility of the NDIS to people from culturally and linguistically diverse background a research project with Advance Diversity Services
  • The development of public attitudes towards people seeking asylum and refuge
  • Media representations of statelessness in SE Asia a research project with SNAP Statelessness Network Asia Pacific
  • Concepts of modern slavery and the market place

Teaching areas
Social Research and Policy, Social Work

Current teaching

  • SOCW1001 Introduction to Social Work
  • SOCW3006 Socio-legal issues in social work
  • SOCW3011 Level 3 social work placement
  • SOCW4014 Level 4 social work placement
  • SRAP2002 Policy Case Studies
  • SRAP3002 Social Research Project
  • SRAP3006 SRAP Workplace




Curry, O., Smedley, C., & Lenette, C. D. (2017). What is ‘successful’ resettlement? Refugee narratives from regional New South Wales in Australia. Journal of Immigrant and Refugee Studies.

Laney, H., Lenette, C. D., Kellett, A., Smedley, C., & Karan, P. (2016). ‘The most brutal immigration regime in the developed world’: International media responses to Australia’s asylum seeker policy.. Refuge: Canada’s journal on refugees, 32(3), 135-149. Retrieved from http://refuge.journals.yorku.ca/index.php/refuge/article/view/40323

Cooper, S., Olejniczak, E., Lenette, C. D., & Smedley, C. (2016). Media coverage of refugees and asylum seekers in regional Australian press: A critical discourse analysis. Media International Australia, 1-12.


Bates, S., Smedley, C., Wong, M., Kayess, R., & Fisher, K. R. (2014). Arthritis and disability (SPRC Report 26/14). Sydney: Social Policy Research Centre, UNSW Australia. Retrieved from https://www.sprc.unsw.edu.au/media/SPRCFile/Arthritis_and_Disability_2014.pdf

Bates., Raven., Fisher, K. R., Kayess., Newton., Lutz., & Smedley, C. (2013). Services Our Way project plan: SPRC Report Series (20/2013). Sydney: Social Policy Research Centre, UNSW. Retrieved from https://www.sprc.unsw.edu.au/media/SPRCFile/Services_Our_Way_evaluation_plan_FINAL.pdf

Griffiths, A., Bates, S., Smedley, C., Fisher, K. R., & Kayess, R. (2014). My Choice Matters evaluation Interim report: SPRC Report (19/2014). Sydney: Social Policy Research Centre, UNSW. Retrieved from https://www.sprc.unsw.edu.au/media/SPRCFile/My_Choice_Matters_evaluation__Interim_Report.pdf

Jones, A., Bates, S., Fisher, K. R., Kayess, R., & Smedley, C. (2013). Arthritis and disability: research plan: SPRC Report (8/2013). Sydney: Social Policy Research Centre. Retrieved from https://www.sprc.unsw.edu.au/media/SPRCFile/Arthritis_and_disability_research_plan_2013.pdf

Purcal, C., Fisher, K. R., Jones, A., Lutz, D., Meltzer, A., Hill, T., . . . Smedley, C. (2014). Supported Accommodation Evaluation Framework Summary Report: Social Policy Research Centre Reports (31/2014). Sydney: Social Policy Research Centre UNSW. Retrieved from http://www.adhc.nsw.gov.au/__data/assets/file/0017/311246/Supported-Accommodation-Evaluation-Framework-Summary-Report.pdf

Purcal, C., Smedley, C., Jones, A., Meltzer, A., Lutz, D., Fisher, K. R., . . . Kayess, R. (2015). Supported Accommodation Evaluation Framework (SAEF): Drop-in Support (SPRC Report 11/2015). Sydney: Social Policy Research Centre, UNSW. Retrieved from http://www.sprc.unsw.edu.au/media/SPRCFile/SAEF_Dropin_Support__Final.pdf