Personal details

Dr Deanna Grant-Smith
Senior Lecturer
QUT Business School,
Discipline *
Business and Management, Human Geography, Policy and Administration
+61 7 3138 2491
+61 7 3138 1313
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Identifiers and profiles

Doctor of Philosphy (Griffith University), Master of Business (Communication Studies) (Queensland University of Technology), Graduate Diploma of Sciences Communication (Central Queensland University), Graduate Certificate in Management Communication (Other), Bachelor of Science (Australian Environmental Studies) (Griffith University)

Professional memberships
and associations

unpaid work, internships, deathscapes, unspeakable policy problems, stakeholder engagement, participatory planning, environmental stewardship, education-to-employment transitions, work-integrated learning, equity and social justice

* Field of Research code, Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification (ANZSRC), 2008


With a PhD in public consultation and policy analysis, I have more than 20 years of experience conducting research and providing policy and strategy advice across the areas of environmental policy, participatory planning, community engagement, and organisational strategy and development. I have extensive experience in developing and delivering consultative approaches for a range of issues including transport and infrastructure planning, and environmental policy review and have conducted and supervised a range of research activities to inform strategic evidence-based decision-making. Within a government setting these include research into: boating activity in high growth areas; indigenous boating safety issues; transport needs and disadvantage; and risk management approaches in regulatory regimes. I currently research public involvement and stakeholder engagement with a focus on marginalised or disadvantaged groups, particularly young people and women, and cultural and political engagements with the environment and sustainability issues particularly those associated with waste. I also explore the potential for exploitation and exclusion presented by unpaid work and emerging forms of unpaid and unconventional internships.       

This information has been contributed by Dr Deanna Grant-Smith.


I am a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. In 2017 I received an Australian Awards for Univesity Teaching (AAUT) citation for Outstanding Contributions to Student Learning.

I currently teach: MGB310 Managing sustainable change and GSZ633 Managing outwards in a networked government (as part of the Public Sector Management Program).

This information has been contributed by Dr Deanna Grant-Smith.


Unspeakable policy & planning problems • To explain high levels of regulatory resistance to marine pollution policy I theorized a new form of wicked policy problem—unspeakable policy problem—characterized by a high level of psychosocial sensitivity and verbal proscription. The successful management of unspeakable policy problems has potentially significant sustainability, social justice and economic impacts. My research explores a wide range of unspeakable policy problems such as unpaid internships, innovation in death-related industries, planning for deathscapes, public acceptance of recycled water, climate change, and Indigenous disadvantage.

Stakeholder engagement & sustainable governance • Sustainable governance represents one of the major challenges of our times. I research stakeholder engagement within sustainability and social justice contexts such as the regulation and management of heterotopic and ludic spaces, the responsibilisation of environmental management, and participatory approaches to disaster preparedness and climate change adaptation.

Just work and responsible management practices • Just work is concerned with the social, economic and cultural inequalities of paid and unpaid employment. I research the equity considerations of and potential for exploitation and exclusion presented by emerging forms of unpaid and unconventional internships and the institutional and policy responses required to safeguard the wellbeing of all workers.

Gender-sensitive infrastructure and social policy • Gender-sensitive infrastructure and social policy has the potential to increase women’s economic empowerment and promote gender equality. I research gendered mobilities, right to the city, and the potential for radical, grassroots and insurgent planning and gender-sensitive infrastructure and social policy responses to enhance community resilience.

This information has been contributed by Dr Deanna Grant-Smith.


For publications by this staff member, visit QUT ePrints, the University's research repository.


Awards and recognition

Academic Honours, Prestigious Awards or Prizes
Reference year
Citation for Outstanding Contribution to Student Learning
Reference year
Awarded 2016 Best Higher Education Research Publication Award Early Career
Reference year
Awarded 2016 ANZAM Award for Early Career Researcher


Current supervisions

  • Path dependence and sustainable socio=technical transitions in infrastructure systems in regional planning in Queensland
    PhD, Associate Supervisor
    Other supervisors: Dr Severine Mayere, Professor Les Dawes
  • Understanding Mining Governance in Indonesia: A Study of Governmentality
    PhD, Mentoring Supervisor
    Other supervisors: Associate Professor Robyn Mayes
  • Minding my own business: A multiple capitals perspective exploring Australian small business survival of natural hazards
    PhD, Principal Supervisor
    Other supervisors: Associate Professor Amisha Mehta
  • Governance and Power in Australian Federalism: The case of independent federal transport regulators
    PhD, Principal Supervisor
    Other supervisors: Associate Professor Robyn Mayes
  • Shop floor worker voice in the Strategic CSR agenda of the Sri Lankan apparel industry
    PhD, Principal Supervisor
    Other supervisors: Associate Professor Robyn Mayes
  • Environmental Equifinality: Exploring Predictors of Responsible Environmental Behaviour of Recreational Fishers
    MPhil, Principal Supervisor
    Other supervisors: Dr Bernd Irmer

Completed supervisions (Masters by Research)