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Dr Philip Mendes

Associate Professor, Research

Telephone: +61 3 9903 1132

Facsimile: +61 3 9903 1141


Dr Philip Mendes is an Associate Professor in the Department of Social Work, Faculty of Medicine at Monash University, and is the Director of the new Social Inclusion and Social Policy Research Unit (SISPRU). He coordinates the three Social Policy & Community Development subjects in the BSW and MSW Q. He is an acknowledged expert on community welfare lobby groups, having completed his PhD on the peak community welfare lobby body, the Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS). He has also published widely on a range of social policy and community development debates including globalisation and the welfare state, neo-liberal think tanks, and illicit drug policies.

Philip is a member of the Editorial Advisory Board for a number of academic journals including Community Development Journal (UK), International Journal of Social Welfare (Sweden), Youth Studies Australia, Developing Practice and Social Alternatives. He is also a reviewer for International Social Work (UK), Journal of Social Work (UK) and Australian Social Work.

He has published widely in peer reviewed academic journals (over 100 publications in total), and is the author or co-author of seven books including Harm Minimisation, Zero Tolerance and Beyond: The Politics of Illicit Drugs in Australia (Pearson, 2004), Inside the Welfare Lobby: A history of the Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS) (Sussex Academic Press, 2006), Australia’s Welfare Wars Revisited (UNSW Press, 2008), and Young People Leaving State out of home care: Australian Policy and Practice (Australian Scholarly Publishing, 2011).

For the last 13 years, he has been engaged in ongoing research on leaving care policy and practice. He is a member of the Transitions to Adulthood for Young People Leaving Public Care International Research Group, and is currently undertaking a study funded by the Helen MacPherson Smith Trust examining the inter-relationship between the child protection and youth justice systems in partnership with seven non-government organisations. He is also planning a new study of young people with a disability leaving state care, and is the guest editor of forthcoming special issues of Australian Social Work and Developing Practice on leaving care.

 His most recent publications include:

 “Social workers influencing social policy: chapter on Australia” in Gal, John & Weiss-Gal, Idit (eds) Social workers influencing social policy: an international perspective on policy practice. Policy Press, In Press. 2012.

 “The re-structuring of the Australian Welfare State” in Information Sociales (French language), 171, In Press, 2012.

 With Susan Baidawi, “Pathways into youth justice: strengthening policy and program supports for young people in the youth justice system who are transitioning from out-of-home care”, Children Australia, 37(1), (2012), 10-22.

 “The Australian Council of Social Service and Indigenous Australians: An historical overview 1956-2011”, Journal of Australian Studies, 35(3), 2011, pp 317-335.

 With Guy Johnson and Badal Moslehuddin, ”Effectively preparing young people to transition from out of home care”, Family Matters, No.89, 2011, pp.59-68.

 “Examining the health and mental health care needs and experiences of a group of young people transitioning from out of home care in rural Victoria”, Communities, Children and Families Australia, 6(1), 2012, 30-42.