Professor Phil Graham - University of the Sunshine Coast, Queensland, Australia

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Staff profile

Professor Phil Graham

PhD (Political Economy of Communication) Qld.UT, MBus (Communication Studies) 1999 Qld.UT

  • Head of School, School of Creative Industries
+61 7 5459 4491
Office location
Sunshine Coast
Professor Phil Graham
Personal Assistant
Margaret Simms
+61 7 5459 4491

Professor Phil Graham spent the first half of his career as a professional musician, performing, composing, and producing music across all areas of the media and entertainment industries. He moved into academia in the late 1990s, starting as a Lecturer at the University of Queensland’s Graduate School of Management.

Phil was awarded a Canada Research Chair at the University of Waterloo shortly after receiving his PhD in Political Economy of Communication at QUT. He returned to QUT in 2007 as a Research Capacity Building Professor in Communication and Culture and took up Directorship of QUT’s Institute for Creative Industries and Innovation in 2008.

In 2012, Phil became Professor and Head of Music at QUT. He has been awarded multiple ARC grants, has published over 100 refereed outputs, along with hundreds of ERA ranked creative works.

Phil began as Head of School of Creative Industries at USC in July 2017.

Professional memberships

  • Founding Executive Editor and current co-editor: Critical Discourse Studies, Taylor and Francis;
  • Scientific Board: International Association of Music Business Research, U Vienna;
  • Member: College of Reviewers, Canada Research Chairs Program (2004-current);
  • Editorial Advisory Boards:
    • Cultural Politics, Duke University Press;
    • Discourse & Society, Sage;
    • Discourse & Communication, Sage;
    • Pragmatics & Society, Benjamins;
    • Critical Perspectives on International Business, Emerald;
    • International Journal of Music Business Research, U Vienna;
    • Fibreculture Journal, Open Humanities Press; M/C Journal, UQ


  • QUT Vice Chancellor’s Excellence Award for Research (2012);
  • University of Waterloo Outstanding Performance Award (2005);
  • University of Queensland Foundation Research Excellence Award (2003);
  • Canada Research Chair in Technology and Communication, University of Waterloo (2002);
  • Distinguished Researchers Award, Canada Foundation for Innovation (2002);
  • UQ Business School Award for Research Excellence (2002);
  • UQ School of Management award for research scholarship, (2000);
  • QUT Faculty of Business Dean’s Award for academic excellence (1999).

Potential research projects for HDR and Honours students

  • Lachlan Goold. (2018, PhD). Space, Time, Creativity, and the Changing Character of the Recording Studio: Spatiotemporal Attitudes Toward 'DIY' Recording. QUT. (Music production);
  • Lawrence English. (2017, PhD). The Listener's Listening. QUT. (Aesthetic practice).
  • Lucinda Hearn (2017, MA). Tension and dissonance in the music industry. QUT. (Music production and distribution);
  • Briony Luttrell. PhD (2017, PhD). A string arranger's toolkit: a semiotic approach to string arranging for recorded popular music. QUT. (String arrangement, Social semiotics);
  • John Willsteed. (2017, PhD). It’s not the heat, it’s the humidity. QUT. (Music scenes and subcultures);
  • Jerry Thackray. (2016, PhD). The slow death of Everett True. QUT. (Music Journalism);
  • Ben Rynderman. (2016, Masters). The Licensing of New Recorded Music Business Models in Australia: Current Practice, the Barriers to Entry and an Investigation in to the Need for Legislative Reform. QUT. (Copyright and music business);
  • Jody Kingston. (2015, PhD). Composing (as) another: music, fiction and the search for identity. QUT. (Music Composition);
  • David Pyle. (2015, DCI). Frameworks for engaging creative practice in bureaucratised project environments. QUT. (Government procurement of creative services);
  • Edward Guglielmino. (2014, MA). A qualitative study of small-scale artist run‘indie’ music businesses in Brisbane. QUT. (Music business);
  • Louise Grayson. (2012, PhD). Streets apart genres of editorial photographs and patterns of photographic practice. QUT. (Professional photographic practice);
  • Krystina Benson. (2012, PhD). The committee on public information: a transmedia war propaganda campaign. QUT. (Communication);
  • Hugh Brown. (2011, PhD). It’s not me, it’s you : a participant observation case study of the self-publishing;
  • Jennene Greehnill (2006, PhD). Turbulence in the Management of Health Services: Change, Inertia, Power and the Professions. University of Queensland. (Management);
  • John Pace (2003, MA). Pace, John (2003) Dromoecology: ecological meaning in the age of hypercapitalism. Queensland University of Technology. (Social semiotics).

Research concentrations

  • Political economy of communication
  • Music business
  • Critical Discourse studies
  • Creative Industries research
  • Philosophy of research
  • Social theories of talent

Research grants

Grant/Project name


Funding body & A$ value


Focus of research grant

LP0989403 Remote Music Interactions Through Online Networks

Prof Andy Colin Frank Arthurs, Prof Julian David Knowles, Prof Philip William Graham, A/Prof Cushla Kapitzke, Mr David Phillip Evans, Ms Margaret Evelyn Moore.



Australian Research Council

(A$260,000 over 3 years).

First year funded 2010

This will put Australia at the leading edge of Web 2.0 research. The Australian sites of practice in the project, and also the wider community will benefit through access to musical expertise for remotely located musicians.

DP0877133 Creative Suburbia: A Critical Evaluation of the Scope for Creative Cultural Development in Australia's Suburban and Peri Urban Communities

A/Prof Terry Flew, Prof Philip William Graham, Dr Mark Nicholas Gibson, Dr Christy Collis

Australian Research Council

(A$270,000 over 3 years).

First funded 2008

This project will examine the work patterns of creative enterprise workers in the outer suburbs of Brisbane and Melbourne, investigating how these enterprises work outside of inner city zones.

DP0877802 New media voices in the Australian values debate

Prof Philip William Graham, Prof Carmen Luke, Dr Christina Louise Spurgeon, Dr Katie Weir, Dr Elizabeth Ferrier.

Australian Research Council

(A$290,000 over 3 years).

First year funded: 2008

This project investigates Australian values in education by identifying which institutions and traditions most influence Australian youth and how these influences are played out in new media forums such as YouTube and MySpace.

LP0883643 Sustainable Selves: A New Assessment Model for Marginalised Secondary Students

Prof Allan Luke, Prof Valentina Klenowski, Prof Philip William Graham, Dr Andrew William Brader

Australian Research Council

(A$270,000 over 3 years).

First year funded: 2008


The project develops an innovative model to assess the skills, knowledge and resources of marginalised students seeking to re-enter education. An authentic portfolio approach to assessment will be piloted and implemented at Queensland's largest provider of re-entry programs, Edmund Rice Foundation Flexible Learning Centre, supported by the Brisbane City Council.

LP0668357 Mapping the missing grassroots: ethnographic action study of local grassroots broadband content (co) creation and consumption.

Dr Jo Ann Tacchi, Dr Axel Bruns, Dr David Rooney, Dr Elizabeth Ferrier, Ms Alison (Sal) Humphreys, Philip William Graham.

Australian Research Council

($A270,000 over 3 years).

Awarded 2005. First funded 2006

This project develops frontier technologies for collaborative production, exhibition, and evaluation of broadband content by grassroots creative producers, promoting an innovation culture as well as exploring innovative uses of broadband and digital media forms.

SR0567263 Development of Tool Interfaces and Data Standards for Enabling Remote Secondary Analysis of Qualitative Data

Dr Andrew Edward Smith, Mr Baden Matthew Hughes, Dr David Rooney, Prof Philip William Graham, Dr Deborah Anne Mitchell, Prof Michael Stephenson Humphreys, Prof Cindy Gallois, A/Prof Helen Joletta Chenery.

Australian Research Council

($A81,000 over 1 year).

Awarded 2004. First year funded 2004.

This proposal will promote sharing and rapid secondary analysis of natural language and other qualitative data by providing interface standards between qualitative analysis systems, and will enhance the integration of analytic methods through improved archiving.

LP0348790 Building sustainable social capital in new communities.

Mr Bruce David Muirhead, Dr Jim McLelland Cavaye, Mr Andrew Jones, Dr Lynda Anne Herbert-Cheshire, Prof Geoffrey Alan Lawrence, Prof Helen Patricia Bartlett, Dr Philip William Graham.

Australian Research Council

($A300,000 – 3 years).

Awarded 2004. First year funded: 2005.

The study identifies the extent to which planning and strategic interventions in new communities contribute to, or detract from, social capital building. The results will be used to identify long term theoretical and practical strategies for strengthening and sustaining social capital in new communities.

LE0346446 Australian Creative Resources Archive

Dr Philip Graham, Prof Gregory Hearn, Dr David Rooney, Prof Jeffrey Jones, Prof Cindy Gallois, Dr Tom Mandeville, Mr Tom Worthington, Mr Bruce Muirhead.

Australian Research Council

($A512,000 over 1 year).

Awarded Sept 2002. First year funded: 2003

The facility will digitise wasted cultural materials to create an accessible archive that meets the needs of Australian researchers, artists, entrepreneurs, and the public, specifically in order to stimulate broadband content development.

Research areas

  • Political economy of communication
  • Discourse analysis
  • Political economy of music
  • Communication and security
  • Media History