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Dr Michael Wilmore

Biography/ Background

Mike Wilmore is a social anthropologist by training and brings the particular insights and research traditions of that discipline into his ongoing studies of global media. He has been studying the development of media in Nepal for over a decade and continues to do so as part of an international team of researchers investigating the uses of FM radio by non-governmental organizations in that country. He is originally from the UK and moved to Australia in 2004 to take up a lectureship here at the University of Adelaide.

Mike is currently the Head of the Discipline of Media and Bachelor of Media Program Convenor.


PhD (2003) Social Anthropology, The University of London. MSc (1993) Social Anthropology, University College London. BA (Hons) (1991) Archaeology, University of Exeter.

Teaching Interests

Mike's teaching interests centre on social and cultural aspects of media. He teaches courses that examine aspects of globalisation and the ways in which media become adapted to the local circumstances in which they are used. He is also interested in the ways we come to understand the media and their influence upon our lives. He currently teaches Global Media: Policies and Practices and Media Research Methods, which are both advanced level courses. He also contributes to teaching throughout the discipline.

He served as Associate Dean (Education) for the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences from 2010 to 2013. Prior to this he was Associate Dean (Postgraduate Coursework Studies).

Research Interests

Mike's research has focused on the development of media in Nepal and South Asia more generally. He is particularly interested in the uses of media by indigenous and other minority groups in post-colonial contexts. His research also looks in particular at aspects of community media development, including cable television and radio, as well as how people are using various Internet and mobile media technologies in South Asia. More recently he has become involved in a number of research projects related to the use of media in health communication. In addition to this he has studied fieldwork in British archaeology with a particular interest in the roles that literacy and textual practices play in this work.

Mike supervises postgraduate students with a wide range of interests ranging from the assessment of the impact of communication for social change projects in Nepal, the making of documentary radio and film projects by Aboriginal peoples, the local Hip Hop scene in Adelaide, and different facets of health communication in the antenatal department of a major metropolitan hospital.

Research Funding

Mike is currently a Chief Investigator on a number of ARC Linkage Projects:

  • Assessing Communication for Social Change: A New Agenda in Impact Assessment for Communication for Development Initiatives (LP0775252) with Associate Professor Jo Tacchi (RMIT), Dr Andrew Skuse (Adelaide) and Dr June Lennie (Senior Research Associate, QUT). Linkage Partner: Equal Access International (San Francisco, USA) and Equal Access Nepal (Patan, Nepal). Further information about this project can be found at:
  • E-health Communication Strategy and Design: Evaluating the Influence of New Media Interventions on the Health of Patients from Vulnerable Populations (LP110100405) with Dr Andrew Skuse (Adelaide), Associate Professor Vicki Clifton (Adelaide), Dr Sal Humphreys (Adelaide), and Dr Dean Bruton (Adelaide). Linkage Partner: Lyell McEwin Hospital (Elizabeth, South Australia). (Social media could be critical to a healthy society, 3rd November 2011)


2011 with Pawan Prakash Upreti, 'Can't Find Nothing on the Radio: Radio Spectrum Policy and Governance in Nepal.' In V. Strang and M. Busse (eds) Ownership and Appropriation. Oxford: Berg Publishers, 217-236.

2011 with Andrew Skuse, 'Producing "New Nepal", Reproducing the Nation: Radio Drama on Unstable Political Terrain.' In A. Skuse, M. Gillespie and G. Power (eds) Broadcasting Social Change: Drama, Development and Cross-cultural Translation. New Delhi: SAGE Publications.

2010 'Hear our song: struggles over freedom of speech, telecommunications access rights and political transformation in Nepal.' In E. Morrell and M.D. Barr (eds) Crises and Opportunities: Past, Present and Future. Proceedings of the 18th Biennial Conference of the ASAA, 5 - 8 July 2010, held at the University of Adelaide, Australia.

2010 with Kirsty Martin, 'Local Voices on Community Radio: Introducing "Our Lumbini" in Nepal.' Development in Practice 20(7):866-878.

2008 Developing Alternative Media Traditions in Nepal. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books. [Republished as a South Asian edition in 2009 by Martin Chautari Publications, Kathmandu, Nepal.]

2008 'Urban Space and the Mediation of Political Action in Nepal: Local Television, Ritual Processions and Political Violence as Technologies of Enchantment.' The Australian Journal of Anthropology 19(1): 41-56.

2007 'The Digital Divide and the Social Divide in New Media Access and Their Implications for the Development of Civil Society in Nepal.' Asia Rights 8.

2007 'The Book and the Trowel: Archaeological Practice and Authority at the Leskernick Project.' In B. Bender, S. Hamilton and C. Tilley (eds) Stone Worlds: Narrative and Reflexivity in Landscape Archaeology. Walnut Creek, CA: Left Coast Press (University College London Institute of Archaeology Publications), 244-276.

2007 (with Tony Williams) 'Introduction to the Sociological Study of the Leskernick Project.' In B. Bender, S. Hamilton and C. Tilley (eds) Stone Worlds: Narrative and Reflexivity in Landscape Archaeology. Walnut Creek, CA: Left Coast Press (University College London Institute of Archaeology Publications), 238-243.

2006 'Gatekeepers of Cultural Memory: Televising Religious Rituals in Tansen, Nepal.' Ethnos 71(3): 317-342.

2006 'Landscapes of Disciplinary Power: An Ethnography of Excavation and Survey at Leskernick.' In M. Edgeworth (ed.) Ethnographies of Archaeological Practice: Cultural Encounters, Material Transformations. Lanham, MD: AltaMira Press, 114-125.

2004 'What's in a name? Working as a "teaching assistant" at University College London and as an "associate lecturer" at the Open University.' In D. Mills and M. Harris (eds) Teaching Rites and Wrongs: Universities and the Making of Anthropology. Birmingham: The Higher Education Academy; Centre for Sociology, Anthropology and Politics, pp. 96-112.

2004 'Review - "Fluid Boundaries: Forming and Transforming Identity in Nepal" by William F. Fisher.' In Ethnos 69(1): 132-134.

2003 'Review - "Media Rituals: A Critical Approach" by Nick Couldry.' In Social Anthropology 11(3): 388-9

2001 'Local Media and Development Culture in Nepal: A case study of Ratna Cable Television and Communication for Development Palpa in Tansen.' In Studies in Nepali History and Society 6(2): 347-387

2001 'Far Away, So Close: Some Notes on Participant Observation During Fieldwork in Nepal and England.' In E@TM Journal, Anthropology From Below 3.: 21-5 (Also available at

1996 'Indigenous Media: Bold is Beautiful.' In Himal South Asia 9(4)


Entry last updated: Wednesday, 30 Jan 2013

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