Emeritus Professor Julie Katherine Park


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Emeritus Professor


Taranaki born, I was educated at the University of Otago. My Phd research, supervised by Professor Peter Wilson, concerned social relationships in a psychiatric hospital. During the 1980s I was an Hon Research Fellow in Anthropology at Auckland and pursued research projects, including social support in a new Auckland suburb, and a large project on the lives of NZ women and alcohol - and food. Subsequently, I was appointed to the University of Auckland and continued research on anthropological studies of health in NZ and the Pacific.

Research | Current

I am  involved in four  main areas of research all relating to a broadly defined concept of health.

Living with haemophilia in Aotearoa New Zealand is a long-term research project which has taken Julie and her colleagues on forays into the anthropology of sport, gender, citizenship, and suffering via detailed ethnographic descriptions of worlds of people with haemophilia.  A small research group including Kathryn Scott (PhD), Deon York (MA) and Mike Carnahan is currently working on a book which brings together our research to explore these themes in more depth.

Transnational Pacific Health through the lens of Tuberculosis. With her Anthropology colleague, AP Judith Littleton, and colleagues from three Faculties at this university  and two colleagues from Oregon, Julie has recently completed a multi-year study which is a direct follow on from the earlier, " Political ecology of TB", study. This time, using a syndemic approach to transnational Pacific health, we have explored the interactions between TB and other conditions, as well as concentrating on the transnational social field that encompasses New Zealand, Tuvalu and the Cook Islands. As in their last project, have worked with emerging scholars conducting Masters or Phd research. The project was funded by the Health Research Council of NZ and The University of Auckland. Although fieldwork is complete, members of the team will be publishing from this project for some time. Please visit our webpage http://www.arts.auckland.ac.nz/en/about/schools-in-the-faculty-of-arts/school-of-social-sciences/anthropology/staff-research/social-research-on-tb-and-health.html

Troubling 'Choice': Exploring and explaining techniques of moral reasoning for people living at the intersection of reproductive techologies, genetics and disability. Dr Ruth Fitzgerald, AP Mike Legge (Otago) and Julie are principal investigators on this RSNZ Marsden funded project, which began in 2011 and will run for three years.  They have been joined by a research fellow, Martha Bell (Otago) and a PhD students, Kate Longmuir and subsequently, Pauline Herbst (Auckland) to conduct anthropological research into everyday ethics in several different contexts, from individual families to the deliberations of Parliament. Summer students supported by this grant worked with Deaf families.

Children and rental housing, with Kathryn Scott and Tricia Laing (HNZ). This preliminary phase has been funded by "Transforming Cities" and includes re-analysing already collected data from the point of view of parents and children and presenting these findings in reports and at workshops.

In addition, with colleagues and students, I am working on a project on the life worlds of first year anthropology students.


Teaching | Current

ANTHRO 314 New Zealand Ethnography

Postgraduate supervision

  • Pauline Herbst (Anthropology) with Judith LIttleton and Ruth Fitzgerald. A child-focussed ethnography with children, families and clinicians associated with genetic metabolic disorders
  • Faruk Shah (Anthropology) with Susanna Trnka. An analysis of rural medical systems and modernity in Bangladesh
  • Kate Longmuir (Anthropology) with Cris Shore and Ruth Fitzgerald, Otago. Ethnographic research with community of Duchennes Muscular Dystrophy.

Completed PhD students

  • Tufoua Panapa (Development Studies) "Ola lei: Developing healthy communities in Tuvalu" (with Y Underhill-Sem, J. Littleton U Auckland;, Anne Chambers, Keith Chambers, SOU)
  • Evelyn Marsters (Development Studies) "A Transnational Syndemic:  Cook Islanders and the experiences of TB and diabetes" (with Y. Underhill-Sem and W. Friesen)
  • Kerrie Freeman (Population Health), Exploring migration and health with Kawerau Finns (Associate Professor Nicola North, main supervisor).
  • Neti Herman (Population Health), Community empowerment approaches to youth health in Rarotonga (Dr Jennifer Hand).
  • Kathryn Scott (Anthropology), Participatory democracy and urban sustainability (co-supervisors, Professors Strang and Shore).
  • Yihua Hong (Asian Studies), Transnational Chinese Koreans in Korea (Dr Changzoo Song, main supervisor).
  • Bon-Giu Koo (Anthropology), Korean-New Zealand Transnational Migration (Dr Changzoo Song, co-supervisor).
  • Anneka Anderson, "TB and young ‘Asian’ people in Auckland" (with Dr Judith Littleton), 2007.
  • Tony O’Connor, "Contemporary Traditional Maori Healing" (with Dr Susanna Trnka), 2007.
  • Jody Lawrence (Geography), "TB and Somali people in Auckland" (Associate Professor Robin Kearns, SGES), 2007.
  • Man Hau Liev (Development Studies), "Cambodian community in New Zealand" (with  A/P Ward Friesen, SGES), 2008.
  • Relinde Tap, "The Construction of Childhood within New Zealand Society and its Implication for the Family and Early Childhood Care and Education" (with Prof Cris Shore, Anthropology), 2007.
  • Donna McKenzie, "Happily Every After: Discourses of Emotion, Love and Health in the Initimate Relationships of Young Adult New Zealanders", 2004.
  • Senka Bozic Vrbancic, "Celebrating Forgetting: the formation of identities and memories by Tarara in New Zealand", 2004.
  • Helen Mavoa, "Mahaki hela: The asthma-related ideas, home interactions and diurnal cortisol patterns of 3-4 year old New Zealand Tongan and Pālangi children with asthma", 2004.
  • Carolyn Morris, "Station Wives in New Zealand: Narrating Continuity in the High Country", 2002.
  • Sally Abel, "Midwifery and maternity services in transition: an examination of change following the Nurses Amendment Act 1990", 1998.


Programme Director for Social Science for Public Health for Semester 1

General Editor: SITES journal

Areas of expertise

Social anthropology, medical anthropology, health, transnationalism, Aotearoa New  Zealand, Cook Islands, Tuvalu, research methods

Committees/Professional groups/Services

General Editor of SITES: A Journal of Social Anthropology and Cultural Studies http://sites.otago.ac.nz

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)


Contact details

Office hours

Semester 1 only: Monday 12-1, Wednesday 2-3

Primary office location

HSB - NORTH - Bldg 201N
New Zealand

Web links