MS Claire Loughnan

MS Claire Loughnan


  • Refugees, Immigration Detention, Youth Detention, Institutional Harms, Human Rights, Border Control and Forced Migration (Ethical theory, Institutional Conduct, border policing and protection, youth justice)



  • I teach into the criminology and socio-legal studies program. My research interests are in border protection, immigration detention and the modes, practices and effects of spaces of confinement and control, broadly speaking. My doctoral thesis argued that contemporary border protection policies in Australia amount to a failure of responsibility, in ethical terms. This examined immigration detention as a site for rethinking the ethical relations of those who work within the institutional life of migration, whether politicians, judges, guards or health care professionals, in order to argue for an ethics of office which might contribute towards a deeper understanding of responsibility beyond mere accountability to a role. I am a team member of an international, interdisciplinary network - The Comparative Network on the Externalisation of Refugee Protection, funded by the Erasmus Program of the European Union, to conduct research over a 3 year period, commencing 2019, into the impact and effects of externalisation in the Asia Pacific/Australian region and in Europe and Northern Africa. I am currently examining the carceral expansion characterising Australia's policy of offshore detention, through the work of Behrouz Boochani. A related area of my research is the extension of my analysis of institutional conduct in diverse sites such as youth detention, prisons, aged and disability care. I am a committee member of the Birmingham University-based Carceral Geography Network.    

Has subject area


Member of

  • Refugee Studies Steering Group, Melbourne Social Equity Institute. Member 2017 - 2019
  • International Detention Coalition. Member 2013 - 2015


Selected publications


Additional Grant Information

  • Comparative Network on Externalisation of Refugee Protection: Erasmus+ European Union Project. 2019 - 2021. Is zero-tolerance to violence a zero-sum game? Perceptions of dangerousness and issues of equity in mental health settings. Melbourne School of Social Equity Grant. 2019.   


Education and training

  • PhD (Arts), University of Melbourne 2018
  • PG Dip (Arts), University of Melbourne 1998
  • BA, The University of Western Australia 1983



Available for supervision

  • Y

Supervision Statement

  • I am available for supervision in the areas of: border protection, immigration detention, migration policing, refugee protection, human rights, youth detention, carcerality and institutional harms.