Dr Janet Hunt

PhD, RMIT University, M.Ed (First Class), University of New England, B.Ed (Hons)First Class, Cambridge University, Advanced Certificate in Association Management, Monash University
Honorary Associate Professor CAEPR
ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences

Areas of expertise

  • Aboriginal And Torres Strait Islander Cultural Studies 200201
  • Public Policy 160510
  • Social Policy 160512
  • Gender Specific Studies 169901
  • Economic Development And Growth 140202
  • Studies Of Aboriginal And Torres Strait Islander Society 169902
  • Australian Government And Politics 160601
  • Environmental Management 050205
  • International Relations 160607
  • Aboriginal And Torres Strait Islander Policy 160501


Janet Hunt joined CAEPR in late 2004 to manage the Indigenous Community Governance Project, an ARC Linkage Project with Reconciliation Australia which ran until the end of 2008. She then began research on the socio-economic benefits of Aboriginal engagement in managing 'country' in NSW, a project which continued until the end of 2013.  In addition she was a Chief Investigator on two ARC Projects, one on Indigenous Philanthropy and Education, the other a major international project on development of a more gender-sensitive measure of poverty. The latter went into a new phase in 2016,  'Preparing the Individual Deprivation Measure for Global Use by 2020' with funding from DFAT. She has also undertaken research on international non government organisations and their work in Indigenous Australia.  Janet was until the end of 2017 a member of the CLC's Community Development Reference Group  and  was a member of the Independent Reference Group for the International NGO Accountability Charter until early 2014. She has undertaken  a range of governance research for the NSW Government and the Closing the Gap Clearinghouse and has  researched success factors in Indigenous development, public value and Aboriginal organisations in the Kimberley and New Public Management and urban Aboriginal Organisations in NSW. She also led the Indigenous sub-project in the ANU Grand Challenge winner of 2018, Zero Carbon for Asia-Pacific, researching Indigenous people's opportunities in the development of a renewable energy industry in Northern Australia. From July 2018- March 2019 Janet was Interim Director of CAEPR. In 2021 Janet became an Honorary Associate Professor at CAEPR and continues her work on the OCHRE Evaluation, and work at the NSW South Coast.

Janet is also an Affiliated Researcher at the  Development Policy Centre & the Poverty and Inequality Research Centre at ANU, and an Honorary staff member at Nulungu Research Institute, Notre Dame University, Broome.

Prior to CAEPR, Janet worked in international development since 1985, specializing in non-government organizations in the Asia-Pacific region, as well as gender and development. She has been the Executive Director of the Australian Council for Overseas Aid (now the Australian Council for International Development) the peak body for international aid and development NGOs, and the International Women's Development Agency, and has worked extensively in the Asia-Pacific region. Since 1999 she has spent considerable time working with and researching local NGOs in East Timor. She has lectured in International Development at Deakin and RMIT Universities.

Janet previously taught, lectured in education, and worked in educational research. Her interest in indigenous Australia has spanned over thirty years and she been associated, mostly voluntarily, with communities and organizations on the NSW South Coast.

Researcher's projects

Reciprocal Accountability and Public Value: Aboriginal Organisations in the Kimberley (ARC)


Urban Aboriginal Organisations in NSW and New Public Management (ARC)


Indigenous engagement in a Renewable Energy Industry in Northern Australia


NSW Aboriginal Affairs Research Agenda: Self-Determination (Aboriginal Affairs NSW)


SeaChange: Marine Cultural Mapping (Mogo and Bateman's LALCs)


Evaluating the Cashless Debit Card


OCHRE Evaluation of Local Decision Making in NSW (Aboriginal Affairs NSW)


Preparing the Individual Deprivation Measure for Global Use (DFAT)

Current student projects

Jonathon Kilgour - E Hoki ki o Maunga – Finding Indigenous Complexity Theories From Our Own Knowledge Systems – A Maori Perspective (Chair)

Minda Murray -  Aboriginal Self-determination and Policy Reform in Victoria: Structural Change as a Key to Success (Chair/Primary Suprervisor)

Janet Turpie-Johnstone - The Narratives of Bunjil Patterns the Past and Future in the Present( Associate Suprevisor)

Dave Johnston - One Place Many Stories: Australian Community Archaeology from within.(Associate Supervisor)



Past student projects

Sophia Close Ukun Rasik A’an: Indigenous self-determined development and peacebuilding in Timor-Leste’.

Mandy Yap  In pursuit of culturally relevant indicators of Indigenous wellbeing Operationalising the ‘recognition space’

Simone Georg Karriyikarmerren rowk - everyone working together. Towards an intercultural approach to community safety in Gunbalanya, West Arnhem Land

Tony Dreise Charity meets clarity:A multiple methods and transdisciplinary approach to improving philanthropic investment in Indigenous Australian education

Tjanara Goreg Goreng. TJUKURPA PULKA:The Road to Eldership, Sacred and Visionary Leaders lead Community Transformation

Chay Brown From the roots up: Principles of good practice to prevent violence against women in the Northern Territory.



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Updated:  21 February 2024 / Responsible Officer:  Director (Research Services Division) / Page Contact:  Researchers