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Professor Paul Arthur

Chair in Digital Humanities and Social Sciences

Contact Information Email:, Campus: Mount Lawley,
Staff Member Details
Campus: Mount Lawley  


Paul Arthur is Chair in Digital Humanities and Social Sciences, and Director of the Edith Cowan Centre for Global Issues, in the School of Arts and Humanities.


Professor Paul Arthur was appointed to ECU as a Professorial Research Fellow in 2016. He holds a PhD in English, Communication, and Cultural Studies from the University of Western Australia.

Professor Arthur speaks and publishes widely on major challenges and changes facing 21st-century society, from the global impacts of technology on culture and identity to migration and human rights. A Fellow of the Royal Historical Society, he has over fifty publications including ten books. His latest book is Migrant Nation: Australian Culture, Society and Identity (ed., 2018).

Paul Arthur is known as a leading figure in the development of the field of digital humanities in Australia and internationally, and he was Australia’s first Professor in Digital Humanities (at Western Sydney University). He previously worked at the Australian National University in roles including as Deputy Director of the Centre for European Studies and Deputy Director of the National Centre of Biography. He oversaw the digital production of the largest collaborative project in the humanities and social sciences in Australia as Deputy General Editor of the Australian Dictionary of Biography.

In the past decade Professor Arthur has received over $3 million in Australian and international grants, individually and in collaboration. He serves on international executive boards and councils promoting digital research innovation, including the global Alliance of Digital Humanities Organizations and the Australasian Association for Digital Humanities (founding President). He is currently co-chair of centerNet, the international network of digital humanities research centres. He also has national roles including as a member of the project board of the National eResearch Collaboration Tools and Resources (Nectar) Super Science initiative of the Australian Government.

Paul Arthur has held a number of prestigious visiting positions in Europe, Asia-Pacific and North America, most recently as Visiting Professor of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences, in 2016-17. He was Dr R. Marika Chair of Australian and Indigenous Studies at the University of Cologne, Germany, in 2013-14, and was selected for the inaugural Indian Government Global Initiative for Academic Network Program for Distinguished International Faculty in 2015.

Paul is also a violinist. He has a long connection with ECU that goes back to the first years of its establishment, when he completed an undergraduate Music sub-major at WAAPA.

Professional associations

  • Royal Historical Society, UK (Elected Fellow)
  • Association of Internet Researchers
  • Association for Computers and the Humanities
  • Association for the Study of Australian Literature
  • Associazione Informatica Umanistica e Cultura Digitale
  • Australasian Association for Digital Humanities (Founding President)
  • Australasian Consortium of Humanities Research Centres (Founding Advisory Board)
  • Australian Historical Association
  • Canadian Society for Digital Humanities / Société canadienne des humanités numériques
  • Cultural Studies Association of Australasia
  • European Association for Digital Humanities
  • Forum on Contemporary Theory, India (Life Member)
  • International Association for Media and Communication Research
  • International Australian Studies Association
  • International Auto/Biography Association
  • International Communication Association
  • International Society for Travel Writing

Awards and recognition

National and International research positions

  • 2016 - 2019: Adjunct Professor, School of Humanities and Creative Arts (Digital Arts, Social Sciences, and Humanities program), University of Canterbury, New Zealand
  • 2016 - 2017: KNAW Visiting Professor (Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences), hosted by Huygens ING—Huygens Institute for the History of the Netherlands, The Hague / Amsterdam) (4 months)
  • 2016 - 2017: Visiting Fellow, Albert’s Global Researcher Network, hosted by Englisches Seminar I, University of Cologne, Germany (2 months)
  • 2016: Indian Government Global Initiative for Academic Network (GIAN) Program for Distinguished International Faculty, hosted by Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Indore (2 weeks)
  • 2015: Distinguished Visitor, University of New England, New South Wales, Australia
  • 2013 - 2014: Dr R. Marika Chair of Australian and Indigenous Studies, University of Cologne, Germany / German Academic Exchange Service DAAD, Deutsche Akademische Austauschdienst (6 months)
  • 2013: Visiting Research Fellow, ANU Centre for European Studies, Australian National University
  • 2013: Honorary Associate, Centre for Media History, Macquarie University, Sydney, Australia
  • 2010 - 2011: Honorary Visiting Research Fellow, Institute of English Studies, School of Advanced Study, University of London
  • 2009 - 2010: Research Fellow, HUMlab, the digital research centre at Umeå University, Sweden (6 months)
  • 2009 - 2010: Research Fellow, Center for Cultural Analysis, Rutgers University, New Jersey, USA (6 months)
  • 2007 - 2009: Adjunct Research Fellow, Research School of Humanities, Australian National University
  • 2007: Research Fellow, Centre for Historical Research, National Museum of Australia, Canberra (4 months)
  • 2007: Manning Clark Residential Fellow, Manning Clark House, Canberra, co-funded by the Australian Copyright Agency Limited (2 months)
  • 2006: Visiting Research Fellow, Humanities Research Centre, Australian National University (3 months)
  • 2004: Helen and John S. Best Research Fellow, American Geographical Society Library, University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee, USA (2 months)
  • 2004: International Associate, Center for 21st-Century Studies, University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee, USA (Fall semester, concurrent with Helen and John S. Best Research Fellowship)
  • 2004: Australian Academy of the Humanities Fieldwork Fellowship (for research at the American Geographical Society Library)
  • 1998: Visiting Scholar, Centre for Cross-Cultural Research, Australian National University (1 month)
  • 1998: Conference Visitorship, Humanities Research Centre, Australian National University (2 weeks)
  • 1996: Visiting Scholar, Research School of Pacific and Asian Studies, Australian National University (2 months)

National and International awards

  • 2018:Best paper award, Digital Humanities in the Nordic Countries 3rd annual conference, University of Helsinki
  • 2012: Elected Fellow of the Royal Historical Society, UK (FRHistS)
  • 2012: Shortlisted for the Western Australian Premier’s Book Awards, for Voices from the West End: Stories, People, and Events That Shaped Fremantle (WA Museum, 2012, ed. Paul Longley Arthur and Geoffrey Bolton)
  • 2012: Fremantle Heritage and Local History Award, Western Australia, for Voices from the West End: Stories, People, and Events That Shaped Fremantle (WA Museum, 2012, ed. Paul Longley Arthur and Geoffrey Bolton)
  • 2008: Pro-Vice Chancellor’s Prize, Humanities category, Curtin University, Western Australia

Research areas and interests

  • Digital Futures
  • Digital Society
  • Globalisation
  • Digital Humanities and e-Research
  • Communication and Media
  • Cultural Studies
  • Historical and Heritage Studies
  • Literary Studies
  • Biography
  • Memory and Identity
  • Travel and Migration
  • Australian Studies
  • European Studies
  • Research Policy
  • Knowledge Translation


  • Advanced Diploma in Leadership and Management, The University of Western Australia, 2008.
  • Doctor of Philosophy, The University of Western Australia, 2002.
  • Bachelor of Arts (Honours), Murdoch University, 1994.


Recent Research Grants

  • Migrant and transnational identity-formation: German and Australian responses to migration and asylum seekers in the media and public discourse,  Edith Cowan University,  Australia-Germany JRC Scheme (UA-DAAD),  2018 - 2020,  $18,000.
  • International Collaboration with Swansea University in the Field of Cyberterrorism for Research Cooperation and Student Exchange,  Edith Cowan University,  ECU Collaboration Enhancement Scheme – 2017 Round 2,  2018 - 2019,  $8,395.
  • Digital Preservation and Documentation of Australia's Migrant Cultural Heritage,  Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade,  United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO),  2018 - 2019,  $97,200.
  • Formalising International Collaborative Ventures between Australia and India to develop New Interpretive Mapping Tools for Digital Humanities ,  Edith Cowan University,  ECU Collaboration Enhancement Scheme - 2017 Round 1,  2017 - 2018,  $6,595.
  • Politics in the Era of Social Media: Are Digital Tools Influencing Young People?,  Edith Cowan University,  School of Arts and Humanities Research Grant Scheme 2017,  2017 - 2018,  $10,000.

Recent Publications (within the last five years)

Book Chapters

  • Arthur, P., (2018), Introduction: Transcultural Studies in Australian Identity. Migrant Nation: Australian Culture, Society and Identity, 256, London and New York, Anthem Press.
  • Arthur, P., (2015), Death in Social Media: The Digital Afterlife. Memorialisation, Winter(10), 43-61, Germany, Heidelberg Press.
  • Arthur, P., (2014), Memory and Commemoration in the Digital Present. Contemporary Approaches in Literary Trauma Theory, 152–175, SpringerLink, Palgrave Macmillan, DOI: 10.1057/9781137365941_7.
  • Arthur, P., (2014), Biographical dictionaries in the digital era. Advancing Digital Humanities: Research, Methods, Theories, 83-92, Basingstoke, United Kingdom, Palgrave Macmillan, DOI: 10.1057/9781137337016.
  • Bode, K., Arthur, P., (2014), Collecting ourselves. Advancing Digital Humanities: Research, Methods, Theories, 1-12, UK, Palgrave Macmillan, DOI: 10.1057/9781137337016_1.

Journal Articles

  • Arthur, P., (2017), Things Fall Apart: Identity in the Digital World. Life Writing, 14(4), 541–550, Abingdon, United Kingdom, Routledge, DOI: 10.1080/14484528.2017.1364170.
  • Arthur, P., (2015), Coda: Data Generation. Biography: An Interdisciplinary Quarterly, 38(2), 312-320, University of Hawaii Press, DOI: 10.1353/bio.2015.0016.
  • Arthur, P., (2015), Translating Identity across Time, Space, and Media. Journal of Contemporary Thought, 42(2015), 5-19, India, University of Baroda.
  • Arthur, P., (2015), Re-imagining a Nation: The Australian Dictionary of Biography Online. The European Journal of Life Writing, IV(2015), 108-124, University of Amsterdam, DOI: 10.5463/ejlw.4.163.
  • Arthur, P., (2015), Digital Textuality, Writing and New Media. Anglistik. International Journal of English Studies, 26(2), 113-123, Germany, Universitaetsverlag Winter.
  • Arthur, P., (2015), Material Memory and the Digital. Life Writing, 12(2), 189-200, Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group, DOI: 10.1080/14484528.2015.1026785.
  • Arthur, P., (2014), Out of Frame. Auto/Biography Studies, 29(1), 1-9, London, UK, Routledge, DOI: 10.1080/08989575.2014.921755.
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