Professor Geoffrey Woolcock - University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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Professor Geoffrey Woolcock

Adjunct Associate Professor, School of Social Sciences

Adj A/Professor Geoffrey Woolcock began his research career in 1991 addressing youth homelessness before spending the remainder of the 1990s in the HIV/AIDS sector, culminating in his doctoral thesis on the HIV/AIDS activist movement which whetted his appetite for meaningful, applied community-based research. Since then, Geoffrey’s research and teaching experience has expanded to include academic roles at the University of Queensland, Griffith University, and University of Southern Queensland’s Institute for Resilient Regions. In addition to Geoff’s academic accomplishments, Geoffrey has also held not-for-profit senior advisory and managerial roles at the Queensland AIDS Council and Wesley Mission Queensland, and is a Board Director of the Brisbane Housing Company, the Australian National Development Index (ANDI) and the Logan Child-Friendly Community not-for-profit company underwriting the Logan Together collective impact initiative.


PhD, School of Sociology, Politics and Anthropology La Trobe; Bachelor of Arts (First Class Honours) Qld.; Bachelor of Arts Qld.

Teaching areas
  • Community development
  • Social impact evaluation
  • Measuring social capital
  • Australian urban and regional sociology
Research areas
  • Measuring community wellbeing
  • Community development and leadership
  • Prevention science
  • Place-based, collective impact monitoring and evaluation
  • Visiting Professor, Institute of Sports Business, Loughborough University
  • Member, Australian Institute of Company Directors
  • Member, Australian Research Alliance for Children & Youth (ARACY)
  • Brisbane South Primary Health Network (PHN) Community Advisory Council
  • Adjunct A/Professor, Griffith University (2012-)
  • Adjunct A/Professor, Qld University of Technology (2013-2017)
  • Co/authored and authored over 160 books, book chapters, peer-reviewed academic papers, consultancy reports and public commentary essays
  • Keynote speaker at over 100 national and international conferences
  • Established data consulting company Global Talent Tracker with key clients AFL
  • Chief Investigator 3 ARC Linkages - The Kids in Communities Study: national investigation of community level effects on children's developmental outcomes (2013-2017); Improving determinants of Australian sports talent identification and development: a multi-disciplinary approach (2009-2012); Building Sustainable Social Capital in New Communities (2004-2007)
Key Research Publications

Woolcock, G 2019, ‘Child-Friendly Third Spaces’ in Pascoe, J & Bosman, C (eds) Rethinking Third Places: Informal Public Spaces and Community Building, Edward Elgar Publishing, Cheltenham pp.56-72.

Goldfeld, S, Villanueva, K, Tanton, R, Katz, I, Brinkman, S, Giles-Corti, B & Woolcock, G, 2019 ‘Creating community indicators for early childhood development: challenges and innovations from the Kids in Communities Study’, Cities & Health, Special Issue, DOI: 10.1080/23748834.2019.1596525.

Summers, J, Cavaye, J & Woolcock, G, 2019, ‘Enablers and Barriers of Tourism as a Driver of Economic Development in Regional Queensland’, Economic Papers, doi 10.1111/1759-3441.12246

Woolcock, G, 2018, ‘Shredding the Evidence: Whose Collective Impact are We Talking About?’ in Kee, Y, Lee, S & Phillips, R (eds) Perspectives on Community Well-Being, Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Springer, pp.59-68.

Robinson, R, Findlay, T & Woolcock, G, 2018, ‘Helping communities improve child development outcomes: The importance of governance in the Kids in Communities Study (KiCS)’, Australasian Journal of Early Childhood, 43:3, 52-61.

Woolcock, G & Manderson, L (eds) 2009, Social Capital and Social Justice: Critical Australian Perspectives, CDU Press, Darwin.

Gwyther, G & Woolcock, G, 2009, ‘Social Capital and the Master Planned Community: Theory and Practice’ in Woolcock, G. & Manderson, L. (eds.) (2009) Social Capital and Social Justice: Critical Australian Perspectives, CDU Press, Darwin.

Salvaris, M & Woolcock, G, 2010, ‘Changing society’s DNA codes: Democracy and the global movement for community progress measures’, Australian Journal of Social Issues, 45:1, 25-40.

Woolcock, G, Gleeson, B & Randolph, B, 2010, ‘Urban Research and Child-Friendly Cities: a New Australian Outline’, Children’s Geographies, 8:2, 177-192.

Burke, M & Woolcock, G, 2009 ‘Getting to the game: travel to sports stadia in the era of transit oriented development’, Sport in Society, 12:7, 890-909.

Scull, S & Woolcock, G, 2005, ‘Problem Gambling in Non-English Speaking Background Communities in Queensland, Australia: A Qualitative Exploration’, International Gambling Studies, 5:1, 29-44, Routledge, London.

Reddel, T & Woolcock, G, 2004, ‘From Consultation to Participatory Governance? A Critical Review of Citizen Engagement Strategies in Queensland’, Australian Journal of Public Administration, 63: 3, 75-87, Blackwell.

Woolcock, G & Boorman, C, 2003, Doing What We Know We Should: The Final Report of the Goodna Service Integration Project (SIP), [Report Commissioned by Department of Families and the Department of Housing, Queensland, Australia].

Woolcock, G & Altman, D, 1999, ‘The Largest Street Party in the World: The Gay & Lesbian Movement in Australia’ in Adam, B, Duyvendak, J. W & Krouwel, A (eds.) The Global Emergence of Gay and Lesbian Politics: National Imprints of a Worldwide Movement, Temple University Press, Philadelphia, pp.326-343.

Contact Professor Woolcock via email