Monash-Oxfam partnership to find new ways to fight poverty

Media Releases, News article written on the 18 May 2011

Retired High Court Judge and Monash alumnus, the Honourable Michael Kirby, is to launch a research and education collaboration between Monash University and Oxfam Australia that will deliver innovative solutions to issues facing people living in poverty.

The Oxfam-Monash Partnership will be formalised on 18 May, although the two organisations have been working closely together for some time to support action in areas including climate change and gender equality.

The relationship has led to exciting research projects, one bringing together the Gender, Leadership and Social Sustainability Research Unit at Monash with Oxfam’s Bangladesh program.

Together, they are conducting research into how women are affected by climate change – through rising waters, changing harvests and the impacts of floods – and developing innovations in local development programs to respond.

Andrew Hewett, Executive Director of Oxfam Australia said this kind of collaboration had a very important role to play in international development work.

“Research is critical to development and the fight against poverty,” Mr Hewett said.

“Working in partnership with academics allows us to better understand and address the issues that matter for the world’s poorest people.”

Speaking about the partnership, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education) Professor Adam Shoemaker described it as a unique association.

“It is an alliance that extends the discoveries made by University academics and researchers with the depth of rigour applied by Oxfam workers in the field. It will enable both of us to do our work for the community – and with the international community – far, far better,” Professor Shoemaker said.

The official launch of the Oxfam-Monash Partnership will celebrate the strong foundations established between both organisations, as well as a generous donation to the cause of $2.9 million made by an anonymous philanthropist.

The event will take place between 12 – 2pm at the Monash Science Centre, Building 74 at the Clayton Campus on Wednesday 18 May, 2011.

For more information or to arrange an interview with Professor Adam Shoemaker contact Samantha Blair Media & Communications + 61 3 39903 4841 or 0439 013 951.

For more information on Oxfam initiatives or to arrange an interview with Andrew Hewett contact Chee Chee Leung on 0400 732 795.