Mission Statement

Researchers for Asylum Seekers aims to influence policy to ensure equity, justice and human rights for all refugees and people seeking asylum, regardless of how they have entered the country via:

  • Educating the wider community about the facts associated with refugee and people seeking asylum policies and issues;
  • Contributing research-based knowledge for lobbying the government to change harmful policies and practices;
  • Establishing a dialogue with advocates, practitioners and academics to develop equitable, just and evidence-based policy initiatives, and to promote debate on people seeking asylum issues;
  • Nurturing the development of new and established researchers on refugee issues, promoting their research, and growing research networks.

Subscribe to our Email List

RAS members receive notices of events of interest and are welcome to attend monthly RAS committee meetings and contribute to RAS activities. We also welcome suggestions for projects from RAS members. Please note that the list of RAS member names will not be published or shared without permission. Email us to join.

Committee Meetings

The RAS Committee meets from 4.00pm to 5.00pm on the first Wednesday of each month (no meetings in Dec or Jan).

The meetings are used as an opportunity to suggest and discuss potential RAS projects and report back on the progress of projects already underway. While the meetings follow an agenda, they are informal and relaxed.

If you would like to suggest an agenda item, email a week before each meeting. Issues not on the agenda are raised and discussed towards the end of meetings.

All RAS members are welcome to attend, as are members of the community interested in the work of RAS or the issues facing people seeking asylum and refugees in Australia.


Melbourne Social Equity Institute Meeting Room
201 Grattan St
University of Melbourne
VIC 3053


Nick Haslam Director

Karen Block Deputy Director

Charlene Edwards Committee Member

Rhys Stephens Committee Member

Angeline Ferdinand Committee Member

Annette Herrera Committee Member

Carly Copolov Committee Member

Ravini Abeywickrama Committee Member

Advisory Board

Ms Madeleine Gow Head, Public Influence, World Vision Australia

Ms Corinne Grant Television Presenter

Dr. Arnold Zable Writer & Educator

Prof. Margot Prior AO School of Psychological Sciences, University of Melbourne

Assoc. Prof. Anne Sanson Department of Pediatrics, University of Melbourne

Dr. Deborah Zion Centre for Human Bioethics, Monash University

Prof. Di Bretherton Former Director, International Peace & Conflict Resolution Centre, University of Melbourne

Mr Kon Karapanagiotidis Coordinator, Asylum Seeker Resource Centre

Assoc. Prof. Harry Minas School of Population and Global Health, University of Melbourne

Dr. Winsome Roberts Department of Social Work, University of Melbourne

Prof. Patrick McGorry Department of Psychiatry, University of Melbourne

Dr. Ida Kaplan Foundation for the Survivors of Torture and Trauma

Mr David Manne Coordinator, Refugee and Immigration Legal Centre

Dr. Alice Garner Former Vice-Chancellor's Fellow, University of Melbourne; Actor & Musician