Researcher

Professor Karen Raewyn Fisher

My Expertise

Disability policy and disability support, NDIS, and community services organisation and delivery; China disability policy; policy process and evaluation.

Fields of Research (FoR)

Social policy, Social program evaluation

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Biography

Karen Fisher is a Professor at the Social Policy Research Centre. Her research interests are the organisation of social services in Australia and China; disability and mental health policy; inclusive research and evaluation; and social policy process. Karen applies mixed methodology and adopts inclusive research methods with people with disability, families, policy officials and services providers.

 


My Grants

Academic...view more

Karen Fisher is a Professor at the Social Policy Research Centre. Her research interests are the organisation of social services in Australia and China; disability and mental health policy; inclusive research and evaluation; and social policy process. Karen applies mixed methodology and adopts inclusive research methods with people with disability, families, policy officials and services providers.

 


My Grants

Academic grants

2019    ARC DP190102711 Making complex interfaces work for the National Disability Insurance Scheme, (CI Michele Foster, Paul Henman, Karen Fisher) $300,000

2017    ESRC, The politics of services subcontracting to NGOs in China, (CI Jude Howell, London School of Economics and Political Science, PIs Xiaoyuan Shang, Karen Fisher, Hans Jørgen Gåsemyr, Regina Enjuto-Martinez), $250,000

2016    ARC LP160100188, Building China’s welfare state: government purchased services for children, (CI Xiaoyuan Shang, Karen Fisher, Natasha Cortis, PI Jude Howell (LSE), Lihua Tong (BLARC) $285,000

2015    ARC LP150100013, Young people with cognitive disability: relationships and paid support, (CI Sally Robinson, Ann Graham (SCU), Karen Fisher, Kelley Johnson, PI Ed Hall (Dundee)), 2016-19, $360,000.

UNSW grants

 

2020 CI Karen Fisher, Rosemary Kayess, Sally Robinson, Frances Quan Farrant, Self managing NDIS packages: promising practices for people left behind, Disability Innovation Institute UNSW, Seed Funding $30,000

2020    CI Qian Fang, Karen Fisher, Bingqin Li, Culturally responsive disability support with Chinese people in Sydney, Disability Innovation Institute UNSW, Seed Funding $30,000

2019    CI Bingqin Li, Karen Fisher, Zhiming Cheng, Disability employment and the Fourth Industrial Revolution, Disability Innovation Institute UNSW, Seed Funding $30,000

2019    CI Catherine Spooner, Mark Harris, Karen Fisher, Ben Harris-Roxas, Patrick Bolton, Jane Taggart, Pathways to Preventive care for People with Severe Mental Illness, Disability Innovation Institute UNSW, Seed Funding $30,000

2017    Arts and Social Sciences Grant, UNSW, Digital economies and people with disability in Australia and China, CI Haiqing Yu, Karen Fisher, Bingqin Li, Gerard Goggin, $11,000

 

Other Competitive Grants

2021    CI Karen Fisher, Sally Robinson, Rosemary Kayess, Christiane Purcal, Gianfranco Giuntoli, Jan Idle, Christy Newman, Policy to change community attitudes toward disability, Disability Royal Commission

2021    CI Karen Fisher, Sally Robinson, Sandra Gendera, Michele Bellen, NACBO capacity building evaluation, Purple Orange

2021    CI Karen Fisher, Sally Robinson, Sandra Gendera, Michele Bellen, Our Voice SA evaluation, Purple Orange

2020    CI Karen Fisher, Sally Robinson, Sandra Gendera, June Alexander, Ellen Fraser-Barbour, Road to Employment evaluation, Purple Orange (NDIS PITC), $65,000

2020    CI Karen Fisher, Julian Trollor, Christiane Purcal, Janelle Weise, Peri O’Shea, Frederick Zmudzki, Evaluation of the Intellectual Disability Mental Health Hubs, NSW Health, $200,000

2020    CI Karen Fisher, Julian Trollor, Christiane Purcal, Janelle Weise, Peri O’Shea, Frederick Zmudzki, Evaluation of the Intellectual Disability Mental Health Residual NDIS Funding, NSW Health, $260,000

2019    CI Karen Fisher, Rosemary Kayess, Sandra Gendera, Enable In Action Research, People With Disability Australia, $75,000

2018    CI Karen Fisher, Christiane Purcal, Gianfranco Giuntoli, Peri O’Shea, Frederick Zmudzki, Evaluation of the Housing and Accommodation Support Initiative Plus (HASI Plus), NSW Health, $400,000

2018    CI Karen Fisher, Christiane Purcal, Laura Davy, Ayah Wehbe, Rosemary Kayess, Sally Robinson, National Disability Strategy Review, Dept of Social Services, $100,000

2017    CI George Argyrous, Peersan, Patricia Rogers, Keryn Hassal, Karen Fisher, Macfarlan Christiane Purcal, Sally Robinson, Rosemary Kayess, Peer Support Review, NDIA, $600,000

2017    CI Karen Fisher, Christiane Purcal, Gianfranco Giuntoli, Peri O’Shea. Frederick Zmudzki, Evaluation of the Community Living Support and Housing and Accommodation Support Initiative (CLS-HASI), NSW Health, $600,000


My Qualifications

BA/LLB (Hons) Auck., MEc Macq. PhD, UNSW


My Awards

Outstanding Postgraduate Research Supervisor Award, Arc Postgraduate Council UNSW 2018

Visiting Fellow, Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion, London School of Economics 2014
Endeavour Australia Cheung Kong Research Fellowship 2005, 2009


My Research Supervision


Supervision keywords


Areas of supervision

HDR Supervision. Professor Karen Fisher supervises higher degree research students and visiting scholars in the organisation of social services with an interest in Australia and China, including disability and mental health services and community care; inclusive evaluation methodology; and social policy process.

Outstanding Postgraduate Research Supervisor Award, Arc Postgraduate Council UNSW 2018

Postgraduate Research Supervisor Award, Arc Postgraduate Council UNSW 2019


Currently supervising

  • PhD Joint Supervisor with Heikki Ikaheimo and Sally Robinson for Paul Tomaszewski, ‘Between a Rock and a Hard Place: Complexities of the complaint process for people with disabilities and their paid supports’, UNSW Scientia PhD Scholarship
  • PhD Joint Supervisor with Mark Harris and Catherine Spooner for Kathryn Thorburn, UNSW Scientia PhD Scholarship
  • PhD Co-Supervisor with Katherine Boydell and Angela Dew for Diane Macdonald, Through my eyes: Photovoice, identity, inclusion and women with disability
  • PhD Joint Supervisor with Charlotte Smedley and Ayxem Eli for Ayah Wehbe, ‘Identity and Belonging of Muslim Women with Disabilities’, UNSW Scientia PhD Scholarship
  • PhD Joint Supervisor with Julian Trollor for Erin Whittle 'Access to mental health care: the double disadvantage of intellectual disability and gender'
  • PhD Co-supervisor with Anne Graham and Sally Robinson for Danielle Notara 'The ethics of participation for young people with cognitive disability'
  • PhD Joint Supervisor with Kelley Johnson and Louisa Smith for Sally-Anne Moad' Exploring lifelong learning experiences for adults with intellectual disabilities- focussing on the barriers to, and successes in, accessing adult learning'

Completed

  • PhD Joint Supervisor with Julian Trollor for Bronwyn Newman 'Information about mental health for people with intellectual disability: impact on equality'
  • PhD Joint supervisor with Kelley Johnson for Deborah Lutz 'Friend or worker? A qualitative transnational approach to understanding relationships between support workers and people with intellectual disabilities utilising individualised funding’
  • PhD Joint Supervisor with Ilan Katz for Quanchai Kerddaen 'Disability, Income Security and Social Protection: Understanding the Experiences of Visually Impaired Street Musicians in the Bangkok Metropolitan Region'
  • PhD Joint Supervisor with Julian Trollor for Janelle Weise 'The delivery of accessible mental health services to people with intellectual disability: a workforce perspective'
  • PhD Joint Supervisor for Emma Partridge ‘Understanding the use of evidence in Indigenous policy’
  • PhD Co-Adviser for Randall Owen, University of Illinois, Disability Studies, ‘Disability Rights, Employment and Workfare: people with disabilities in liberal welfare states’

My Engagement

Australasian Evaluation Society
Australian Social Policy Society
East Asian Social Policy Network
People With Disability Australia
Disability Innovation Institute at UNSW, Interim Team 2017
Centre for Applied Disability Research (CADR), Advisory Board Member 2015 -
A&SS Equity Diversity and Inclusion Committee, Gender Champion, 2017 -
UNSW Women in Research Network (WIRN), Co-Chair 2016, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Representative 2015 - 17
SPRC Communication and Engagement Committee, Chair 2015
Editorial Board, Research and Practice in Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities 2014-
Review Board, Review of Disability Studies, 2013 - 16
Neami Research Advisory Committee 2013 - 18
Centre for Disability Studies, University of Sydney, Board Member 2012 - 17
SPRC Disability Research Program, Leader 2011 -
ARC Expert Assessor 2008 -
Partners in Recovery (PIR), South East Sydney Medicare Local, Advisory Committee 2013 - 14
Official Visitor Mental Health NSW 2006-12
Community Visitor Disability Accommodation Services 1995-2000


My Teaching

HDR Supervision. Professor Karen Fisher is keen to supervise higher degree research students and visiting scholars in the organisation of social services with an interest in Australia and China, including disability and mental health services and community care; inclusive evaluation methodology; and social policy process.

  • PhD Joint Supervisor for Erin Whittle 'Access to mental health care: the double disadvantage of intellectual disability and gender'
  • PhD Joint Supervisor for Bronwyn Newman 'Information about mental health for people with intellectual disability:impact on equality'
  • PhD Co-supervisor for Danielle Notara 'The ethics of participation for young people with cognitive disability'
  • PhD Joint supervisor for Deborah Lutz 'Friend or worker? A qualitative transnational approach to understanding relationships between support workers and people with intellectual disabilities utilising individualised funding’
  • PhD Joint Supervisor for Quanchai Kerddaen 'Disability, Income Security and Social Protection: Understanding the Experiences of Visually Impaired Street Musicians in the Bangkok Metropolitan Region'
  • PhD Joint Supervisor for Janelle Weise 'The delivery of accessible mental health services to people with intellectual disability: a workforce perspective'
  • PhD Joint Supervisor for Sally-Anne Moad 'Exploring lifelong learning experiences for adults with intellectual disabilities- focussing on the barriers to, and successes in, accessing adult learning'

Completions:

  • PhD Joint Supervisor for Emma Partridge ‘Understanding the use of evidence in Indigenous policy’
  • PhD Co-Adviser for Randall Owen, University of Illinois, Disability Studies, ‘Disability Rights, Employment and Workfare: people with disabilities in liberal welfare states’
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Location

210 Goodsell Building

Contact

+61 2 9385 7813
+61 2 9385 7838

Videos

Mental Health Housing and Accommodation Initiative (HASI) Evaluation
Chinese disability policy, including employment quotas and digital technology
Home is where the health is
Karen Fisher on China's disability services