DR Jessica Gerrard

DR Jessica Gerrard




  • Jessica is Senior Lecturer at the Melbourne Graduate School of Education. She is an interdisciplinary researcher who researches the relationship of education to social change and politics, with a particular focus on social inequalities, public policy reform and education, work and unemployment. She has a particular interest in working across the disciplines of sociology and history and with critical theories and methodologies. She is currently co-leading an Australian Research Council Discovery Project that is examining the changing formations of public education through an investigation of parent involvement in school decision making. In 2012-2015 she was awarded the McKenzie Postdoctoral Research Fellowship at the University of Melbourne. Within this Fellowship Jessica led a three-year interdisciplinary study on marginalised experiences of work and learning, focusing on sellers of homeless street press, such as The Big Issue. This research is presented in her most recent book: Precarious Enterprise on the Margins: Work, Poverty and Homelessness in the City (2017, Palgrave Macmillan). In 2012 she completed her doctorate at the University of Cambridge, which examined the histories of community-based radical education in Britain, including the Socialist Sunday School and Black Saturday/Supplementary School movements. This research formed the basis for her book, Radical Childhoods: Schooling and the Struggle for Social Change (2014, Manchester University Press). Jessica has won a number of awards in recognition of her research. In 2015 she received an Early Career Researcher Commendation from The Academy of Social Sciences in Australia. Her article in the British Journal of Sociology of Education, 'Counter narratives of excellence: free schools, success and community-based education' (2014) was awarded the Best Early Career Article. In addition, the journal Urban Studies shortlisted her paper 'The "lamentable sight' of homelessness and the society of the s   


Selected publications


Investigator on


Education and training

  • PhD, University of Cambridge 2012
  • MPhil, University of Cambridge 2006
  • BEd (Hons), University of Technology Sydney 2002


Available for supervision

  • Y