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Advancing wisdom studies (pedagogy and curiculum) in teacher education

1995 …2021

Research activity per year

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Personal profile

Research interests

Countries and Regions: SE Asia, Oceania, Australia, Thailand, Japan, China, Sri Lanka, India

Education Focus: Sociology of Education, Comparative and International Education, Pedagogical Studies, Cross-cultural Studies, Wisdom Studies, Educating for diversity and inclusion, Teacher Education, Aboriginal Education, Indigenous Education, Transforming teaching and learning, Higher Education, Adult Education, Buddhist Education, Dharma Education, Reimagining educational leadership, Leadership & Management Education, Sustainability Education, Complex Adaptive Systems

Organisational Development Focus: Strategic Planning, Change Management, Diversity Leadership and Management, Indigenous Leadership Development, Emergent Organisational Transformation, Leadership and Management of Organizational Sustainability, Complex Adaptive Systems 

Supervision interests

  • Emergent Organisational Transformation
  • Education for Wisdom
  • Wisdom Studies in Teacher Education
  • Indigenous Leadership in Higher Education
  • Organisational Development and Professional Practice
  • Education of Indigenous and Other Traditionally Oriented Peoples
  • Sociology of Knowledge: International and Cross-Cultural Comparative Perspectives



Monash teaching commitment

EDF5657 Indigenous Perspectives on Professional Practice


Community service

Academic Board – Elected Member and Member of Steering Committee

Monash University:


Academic Advisory Committee

Worawa Aboriginal College:


Board Member

Daylesford Dharma School:

Japan International Education Society:




I work in the Faculty of Education and am a Professor. 

My academic career addresses an enduring question for educators: How do we develop well informed and wise citizens? Professor Nicholas Maxwell (University College, London) argues that “There needs to be a change in the basic intellectual aim of inquiry, from the growth of knowledge to the growth of wisdom - wisdom being taken to be the capacity to realize what is of value in life, for oneself and others, and thus including knowledge, understanding, and technological know-how”. The challenge for educators is to bring wisdom education inherited from small, culturally-homogeneous communities into an increasingly globalized and decontextualized education system. Modern education focuses on constructively aligning the accumulation of knowledge for assessment, forgetting the ancient human need to educate students for wisdom.

With many graduating students not knowing how to use their knowledge wisely, I created the Wisdom Method that is informed by ancient traditions and is responsive to modern needs. It guides students to find a balance between social justice values, critical thinking, and concentration practices (sociology of education, sub-fields pedagogical reform of teacher education and comparative, higher, and leadership education). Building on the ideas of Sternberg (emphasis on psychological balance), Bernstein (pedagogical reform of the structure and processes of education knowledge, transmission, and practice), and Maxwell (a major intellectual and institutional revolution in the aims and methods of inquiry, from knowledge-inquiry to wisdom-inquiry), I have undertaken sustained theorization about wisdom pedagogies to inform effective pedagogical reform in schools and universities.

My consistent intellectual trajectory brings together wisdom pedagogies of Indigenous Australians, the cultures of the Indo-Asia-Oceania region, and in education for environmental sustainability and food security as exemplars that inform my modern wisdom education method in the field of comparative education. A practical example internationally of the impact of my research about different wisdom traditions, parents want the capacity for wisdom to be nurtured in their children at university and in school using methods they know to be reliable whereas teachers, academics, and teacher educators know little about the development of wisdom for the modern world, a tension my work addresses.

Over my career, I have achieved consistent funding for my research and the research approach that I have developed. In the Australian Institute for Teaching & School Leadership and National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Higher Education Consortium projects, I collaborated with Indigenous experts in all phases of the research, bringing questions about methods to teach and work with Indigenous people for wise education. In a DFAT AAF program, I engaged my network of Indigenous Traditional Owners with scholars from Sri Lanka, Pakistan, and India about traditional food knowledge and the development and leadership of wise food futures, together with interdisciplinary partners from the Faculties of Business and Economics and Arts. My academic leadership centers on my sustained and innovative scholarship of pedagogical reform for wisdom development in education, engaging local communities in collaborative research partnerships, asking innovative questions, and developing culturally appropriate answers about how to bring wisdom into education.

My most recent research examines the translation of Buddhist ideas into education practices in India, Sri Lanka, Thailand, China, and Japan over centuries and the most recent migration of Buddhist and Dharmic ideas to countries such as Australia.

Education/Academic qualification

Aboriginal Education, Graduate Diploma in Aboriginal Education, Flinders University

Sociology of Education, Bachelor of Arts (Honors First Class), Flinders University

Sociology and Education, PhD, Flinders University

Social Sciences, Bacelor of Social Studies, University of Sydney

External positions

Board Member, Daylesford Dhamma School

Editorial Board member, Horizons of Holistic Education

Board Member, Japan International Education Society

Editorial Board Member, Journal of Global Education and Research

Co-President, Oceania Comparative and International Education Society

Academic Advisory Committee - Member, Worawa Aboriginal College Limited

Research area keywords

  • Wisdom in Education
  • Cross-Cultural or Comparative Education
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander
  • Dharma education
  • Sociology of Education
  • Leadership Development
  • Teacher Professional Development and Learning
  • Food and Indigenous-Settler Relations


Recent external collaboration on country/territory level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots or