CHC Researcher boosts international profile

Karenne Hills, from CHC’s School of Social Sciences, continues to build an international profile in the area of disability theology research.

In August, Karenne spoke at The International Association for the Scientific Study of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IASSIDD) World Congress, which attracted 1,600 delegates from around the world, and is one of the most prestigious conferences internationally in this discipline.  Presenter numbers are strictly limited and thus acceptance to speak is competitive and a great achievement in itself.  Karenne presented “Spirituality in the context of non-verbal autism”, based on her PhD research.

The following week Karenne spoke at the Exclusion and Embrace conference.  This is a multi-faith Australasian conference which focuses on the growing interest in faith and spirituality in the lives of people with disability.  Karenne was a steering member of the conference committee and as such has been working hard for the past two years in the planning and success of the three days of the conference.

Her presentation “Towards a model of inclusive practice in Christian higher educational institutions:  A prototype program” described a program currently in operation in the CHC School of Social Sciences.  The program is an innovative, individualised educational support program designed to assist students with a disability to succeed at tertiary study.  The program began in 2014 and to date has realized success far exceeding the school’s expectations.  It has also attracted international interest from other educational institutions, disability organisations, and leading disability scholars.

Karenne was also invited to participate in a panel discussion on day three of the program alongside Dr Samuel Kabue, (Executive Secretary of the World Council of Churches Ecumenical Disability Advocates Network), Dr Bill Gaventa (Director of the Summer Institute on Theology and Disability and Director of the Collaborative on Faith and Disability), and fellow Australians Andy Calder and Louise Gosbell.  The panel discussed ideas and innovations for the inclusion of disability focused courses along with programs for people with disabilities in seminary and theological college curricula.

As a result of her presentations, CHC has been showcased to a large number of people representing a variety of organisations and Higher Educational Institutions from across the globe.  During both conferences she also had the advantage of networking and consolidating scholarly linkages with leading international disability scholars.

Sue Chapman wins Three Minute Thesis Challenge

Congratulations to CHC lecturer Sue Chapman, for winning the annual Three Minute Thesis Challenge at Griffith University.

Sue, who teaches drama in CHC’s School of Education, Humanities and Business, will now represent Griffith University in the Asia-Pacific Finals of the competition on 30 September, 2016.

Currently competing her PhD at Griffith University, Sue is passionate about incorporating the arts into school curricula and believes that the teaching of so-called ‘serious’ subjects such as Maths,  English and Science can be improved dramatically through creative approaches.

See the full story at: Arts immersion wins Three Minute Thesis

Climate Change – Research Update

Dr Johannes LuetzIn addition to chairing CHC’s first-ever Research Symposium in July, CHC’s Senior Lecturer Dr Johannes Luetz has achieved significant recent success with his own research activities.

As noted here previously, Johannes presented a paper at the Symposium on Climate Change Adaptation in the Pacific Region which was held in Fiji last month.  His paper “Climate change and migration in the Maldives:  Some lessons for policy makers” was well received and has subsequently been accepted for publication as a chapter in the book “Climate change adaptation in pacific countries:  Fostering resilience and improving the quality of life”.  This book forms a volume of the award-winning book series “Climate change management” published by Springer.

Following this, Johannes has been accepted to present a paper at the Symposium on Climate Change Adaptation in Asia to be held in India in February 2017.  His paper “Climate change and migration in Bangladesh:  Empirically derived lessons and opportunities for policy makers and practitioners” draws on field research conducted as part of his PhD.   Papers from the symposium will be published in a multi-volume publication “Guidebook on climate change adaptation in Asia:  Strengthening sustainable development and adaptation capabilities” which will form a volume of Springer’s “Climate change management” series.


CHC Research Symposium – Full Program Released


Christian Heritage College has released the full preliminary program for its inaugural Research Symposium, entitled Learning and Loves: Reimagining Christian Education.

To be held on July 18 and 19 this year, the program will feature Dr James KA Smith (Calvin College), Dr Ryan Messmore (The Millis Institute, CHC) and 36 research papers presented by some of Australasia’s leading Christian education experts.

Click on the image above to see the full preliminary program or visit

Registrations are still open and can be made clicking on the button below. Registrations close on 10 July, 2016.

Dr Luetz to speak at international Climate Change Conference


Dr Johannes Luetz (CHC)

Dr Johannes Luetz, Senior Lecturer and Postgraduate Coordinator in the School of Social Sciences, and Chair of the CHC Research Committee has recently been accepted to present at a major international symposium.  The Symposium on Climate Change Adaptation in the Pacific Region will be held in Fiji on 26-28th July, 2016.

The Symposium focuses on the important issue of climate change – a topic which requires improved understanding for its potential to foster resilience in countries in the Pacific region as they adapt to climate change over time.

Organized by the University of Fiji, Hamburg University of Applied Sciences and the International Climate Change Information Programme, this Symposium is interdisciplinary involving scholars, practitioners, researchers and governmental agencies.  Johannes will be presenting research based on his Ph.D.  His paper, entitled “Climate change and migration in the Maldives:  Some lessons for policy makers” argues that forward thinking policy development is a critical success factor for equitable human migrations which have been prompted by natural disasters and environmental change.  Papers from the conference will be published in book form as part of the award-winning and world’s leading book series on climate management: “Climate Change Management” published by Springer.