HCRI Research Seminar - The Rise of the Phoenix: Gender Equity in the Wildland Fire Profession
|Starts:||16:00 1 Oct 2019|
|Ends:||19:00 1 Oct 2019|
|What is it:||Lecture|
|Organiser:||School of Arts, Languages and Cultures|
|Who is it for:||University staff, External researchers, Families, Adults, Alumni, Current University students, General public|
|Speaker:||Dr Christine Eriksen , Dr Billy Haworth|
HCRI kick start our research seminar series for the new term with guest speaker Dr Christine Eriksen and Dr Billy Haworth as Chair.
Event title: The Rise of the Phoenix: Gender Equity in the Wildland Fire Profession
Event abstract: Notwithstanding decades of affirmative action, and training techniques breaking the link between physical body strength and capability, different gender expectations and experiences persist for men and women in wildland firefighting. This presentation builds on a dozen years of research with wildland firefighters, Indigenous land stewards, wildfire survivors, and residents living in fire-prone landscapes in Australia and North America. It will discuss how both women and men suffer from structural biases when it comes to gendered aspects of agencies that manage fire, and highlight the potential operational benefits of heightened awareness of unquestioned gender biases. Narratives about “being” and “becoming” a man within the context of wildland firefighting reveal how historical ideas that frame gender, particularly with respect to outdoors work, still powerfully define acceptable and unacceptable gendered behaviour. The work-place and identity of the wildland firefighter is seemingly stabilised through the performance of a white, heterosexual firefighting masculinity. This performance trades on ageism, sexism, homophobia and racism that disputes the worth of the bodies of women and other types of male firefighters. The presence of women (and ethnic minority groups) on the fire-line both challenges and reinscribes gendered concepts and practices of the bodies of individuals-who-manage fire. From reduced stress, mental health, and legal costs to a more sustainable and efficient workforce, gender equity has much to offer wildland fire given the challenges of our flammable future.
Event format: Welcome and introduction by Billy prior, to presentation by Christine. A audience Q&A session will then proceed followed, by a networking session at 6pm. Free drinks and snacks will be available.
Please note this event is open to members of the public and no booking is required for this event, so simply turn up.
Dr Christine Eriksen
Role: Senior Lecturer and Senior Research Fellow
Organisation: University of Wollongong, Australia
Biography: Christine has gained international recognition in the field of disaster geographies. With a particular interest in social dimensions of disasters, her research in Australia, North America and Africa, examines the trade-offspeople make between risks and benefits. She contextualises these trade-offs at scales ranging from individual households and community networks, to official management agencies.
Dr Billy Haworth
Role: Postgraduate Teaching Director and Lecturer in International Disaster Management
Travel and Contact Information
Ellen Wilkinson Building