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Birtchnell, Thomas Associate Professor

Associate Professor

  • School of Geography and Sustainable Communities
  • Faculty of the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities
  • Australian Centre for Culture, Environment, Society and Space (ACCESS)

Overview


Associate Professor Thomas Birtchnell holds interests on the interface between sustainable urban development and technological innovation with expertise in the mobilities paradigm. Recent work focuses on possible futures involving the production innovation of 3D printing, intellectual property, and people's capacity to make objects themselves. A strand of this research involves the social science critique of the containerization distribution system and supply chain management. Associate Professor Birtchnell's first book for Palgrave Macmillan (2013) examined the mobilities of talent and knowledge to and from the Global South. Associate Professor Birtchnell has also published a book with NGO Tech4Trade's CEO William Hoyle titled 3D Printing for Development in the Global South (2015). Birtchnell joined the University of Wollongong as a Lecturer in 2013 and has taught International Studies, Sociology and Geography subjects at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. Prior to joining UOW, Associate Professor Birtchnell was a Research Associate (2010-2013) at the Centre for Mobilities Research (CeMoRe) at Lancaster University in the UK in a project titled Technologies and Travel. The Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) funded this full-time position and Distinguished Professor John Urry was the Principal Investigator and Birtchnell's mentor. The research examined the past and future impacts of 3D printing and additive manufacturing on mobilities, travel and transport and involved futures scenario-building exercises with designers, engineers, consultants and policymakers. The research was published in a co-authored book with Professor Urry for Routledge titled A New Industrial Future? (2017). Prior to postdoctoral research at Lancaster University, Birtchnell was awarded a doctorate in Sociology and Social Policy from The University of Sydney in 2010. Birtchnell's PhD research contributed to an Australian Research Council (ARC) Linkage Grant between the Centre for the Mind at The University of Sydney and industry partner McKinsey and Company. Birtchnell has also been involved in the Centre for Corporate Change (CCC) in UNSW’s Australian Graduate School of Management (AGSM).

2019 Birtchnell, T. Arts and Culture (Input Paper) The Effective and Ethical Development of Artificial Intelligence: An Opportunity to Improve Our Wellbeing Australian Council of Learned Academies (ACOLA) Horizon Scanning Series

2018 Birtchnell, T., Daly, A., Rayna, T., and Striukova, L. 3D Printing and Intellectual Property Futures UK Government Intellectual Property Office (Ref: ISBN 978-1-910790-43-4)

2014 Urry, J., Birtchnell, T., Caletrio, J. and Pollastri, S. - Living in the City (WP2) UK Government Office for Science, Foresight Future of Cities Project (Ref: GS/14/801)


Top Publications


Research Overview


    • Digital Labour
    • Artificial Intelligence and the creative industries
    • Managerialism in Indian spirituality
    • Histories and geographies of manufacturing
    • Cargo and digital cargo
    • 3D Printing for development

Selected Publications


Advisees


  • Graduate Advising Relationship

    Degree Research Title Advisee
    Doctor of Philosophy (Integrated) Ambassadors of Airmindedness: Airport Volunteering in Australia Robinson, Leigh
    Doctor of Philosophy Enhanced Humans, Robotics and the Future of Work York, Alex
    Doctor of Philosophy 3D Printing and the Physical Internet in Aboriginal Communities Solitei, Makrita

Top Publications


Research Overview


    • Digital Labour
    • Artificial Intelligence and the creative industries
    • Managerialism in Indian spirituality
    • Histories and geographies of manufacturing
    • Cargo and digital cargo
    • 3D Printing for development

Selected Publications


Advisees


  • Graduate Advising Relationship

    Degree Research Title Advisee
    Doctor of Philosophy (Integrated) Ambassadors of Airmindedness: Airport Volunteering in Australia Robinson, Leigh
    Doctor of Philosophy Enhanced Humans, Robotics and the Future of Work York, Alex
    Doctor of Philosophy 3D Printing and the Physical Internet in Aboriginal Communities Solitei, Makrita
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