Dr. Benjamin Habib is a Senior Lecturer in Politics and International Relations at La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia. Ben is an internationally published scholar with a current research interest in three areas: (1) intersections between grassroots sustainability and regeneration projects, environmental movements and international climate politics; (2) traditional and non-traditional security in North Korea; and (3) undergraduate teaching pedagogy.
Ben teaches into the Permaculture Design Course (PDC) at CERES Community Environment Park in Melbourne, focusing on the application of permaculture design principles to socio-economic systems. He is also a staunch advocate for mental health.
Ben completed his PhD candidature at Flinders University in Adelaide, Australia in 2011, after graduating with a B. Arts (Hons) from Flinders University and a B. Arts from the University of South Australia. He has also studied at Keimyung University in Daegu, South Korea.
About the Blog:
I strongly believe that one of my roles as an academic is to add value to the community in which one lives. Blogging is an excellent vehicle for the academic to explore research ideas, solicit critical feedback and produce feeder material for academic work. It provides a forum for making peer-reviewed publications available to a wider audience beyond academia. It is a research and upskilling device that helps to inform my teaching activities, in addition to exploring topics of intellectual interest beyond my research and teaching niche.
As a teaching tool, this blog provides experiential learning opportunities for motivated students as an outlet for publication of original opinion pieces and outstanding academic course work, as well as an avenue for training in the editorial process. Aside from nurturing the professional skills of participating students, the blog aims to nurture the intellectual and cultural consciousness of local youth by encouraging them to take pride in being intelligent and making a positive contribution to public affairs.
The blog documents my community engagement activities and includes links to further information, which may be of especial value to student and non-academic readers who are less familiar with the reliable information sources that members of the academic community take for granted. An academic should encourage people outside of academe and the policy world to actively engage in the marketplace of ideas and policy debates. This is important, because a politically engaged citizenry is necessary for a robust and healthy democracy.