Cecily is a Professor in the School of Global, Urban and Social Studies and Centre for Urban Research where she co-leads the People and Environment Research Program.
Since 2008, Cecily has held three consecutive research fellowships, including a five-year Research Practice Fellowship funded by the Victorian Health Promotion Foundation.
Her research focuses on human-environment interactions in urban settings in the context of everyday life. She is particularly interested in how people interact with animals and plants in homes and neighbourhoods, how these interactions affect health and wellbeing, and the implications for making cities greener and more biodiverse. Cecily explored some of these ideas in her book ‘Healthy urban environments: More-than-human theories’ (2018, Routledge).
Cecily has been interested in the health benefits of contact with nature since working on the Healthy Parks, Healthy People initiative in the early 2000s and I am a lead investigator for the Australian Government’s Clean Air and Urban Landscapes Hub (funded by the National Environmental Sciences Program).
Previously, she conducted interdisciplinary research in social science and ecology with a broad range of government and industry partners since 1999, including the widely cited ‘Healthy Parks Healthy People’ report for Parks Victoria. Although an interdisciplinary scholar, my work is broadly situated in human geography, specialising in post-humanist approaches and qualitative methods
Before joining RMIT, Cecily was a social scientist for the Australian Department of Agriculture where she managed research projects commissioned by policymakers on change in rural industries and communities. She has conducted social and environmental research for Australian universities and governments since 1998. Cecily has a BSc Hons in Environmental Studies (Behavioural Ecology) and a PhD in Health Promotion on contact with nature and children’s mental, emotional and social health (funded by VicHealth).
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People-environment relationships, theories of social practice, sustainability and everyday life, housing and health and wellbeing, qualitative research.