James Whelan’s publications

Edited texts

Whelan, J. ed. (2006) Partnership-Based Social Research for Sustainable Natural Resource Management in Queensland, State of Queensland Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Water, Brisbane.

Monographs

Whelan, J. (2012) Big Society and Australia: How the UK Government is dismantling the state and what it means for Australia, Centre for Policy Development, Sydney.

Whelan, J. (2011) The State of the Service: An alternative report, Centre for Policy Development, Sydney.

Book chapters

Whelan, J. & La Rocca, S. with Hammond, H., MacLeod, J. & Gell, P. (2012) ‘Strategising to learn: Learning to Strategise’ in P. Westoby & L.Shevellar, L. (eds.) Learning and mobilising for community development: A radical tradition of community based education and training, Ashgate, Surrey, UK, pp.69-80.

Lyons, K., Scrinis, G., & Whelan, J. (2012) ‘Nanotechnology, Agriculture and Food’, in Donald Macluran and Natalia Radywyl (Eds), Nanotechnology and Global Sustainability, Taylor and Francis, London.

Whelan, J (2011) ‘Climate activism and transformation’, in David Wright, Catherine Camden-Pratt, Stuart Hill (eds) Social Ecology: Applying Ecological Understanding to our Lives and our Planet, Hawthorn Press, Stroud UK.

Whelan, J. (2007) ‘Community action, engagement and conflict’, A Nelson (ed.) Steering Sustainability in an Urbanising World; policy practice and performance, Ashgate, London, pp. 139-152.

Whelan, J. (2007) ‘Community decision-making and empowerment’, in Regina Souter (ed) Building the Bridges: Seven years of Australian coastal cooperative research, Coastal CRC, pp.129-135.

Oliver, P. & Whelan, J. (2006) ‘The place, limits and practice of collaboration: Lessons from regionalisation and community participation in Coastal natural resource management’, in N.Lazarow, R.Souter, R.Fearon and S.Dovers (eds) Coastal Management in Australia: Key institutional and governance issues for coastal natural resource management and planning, Coastal CRC, Brisbane, Australia, pp.69-78.

Whelan, J. (2005) ‘A Hard Road to Learn: learning from failed social action’, in J.Crowther, V.Galloway & I.Martin (eds) Popular Education: Engaging the Academy, NIACE, Leicester, UK, pp.157-168.

Whelan, J. (2002) ‘Smogbusters in Queensland’, in K.Phillips (ed) Local Heroes: Australian crusades from the environmental frontline, Pluto Press, Sydney, pp.20-40.

Journal articles

Whelan, J. (2012) ‘Community climate action’, Social Alternatives.

Lyons, K. & Whelan, J. (2010) ‘Community engagement to facilitate, legitimise and accelerate the advancement of nanotechnologies in Australia’, NanoEthics, vol. 4, Issue 1, pp. 53-66.

Flowers, R., Guevara, R. & Whelan, J. (2009) ‘Popular and informal environmental education – The need for more research in an ”emerging” field of practice’, Report (German Adult Education journal).

Whelan, J. (2005) ‘Popular education for the environment: Building interest in the educational dimension of social action’, Australian Journal of Environmental Education, vol. 21, pp.51-62.

Whelan, J. & Lyons, K. (2005) ‘Community Engagement or Community Action: Choosing Not to Play the Game’, Journal of Environmental Politics, 14(5), pp.596-610.

Whelan, J.& Oliver, P. (2005) Regional Community-Based Planning: the Challenge of Collaborative Environmental GovernanceAustralasian Journal of Environmental Management, 12(3) pp.126-135.

Whelan, J. & La Rocca, S. (2004) ‘Not Waiting for a Rainy Day: Professional Development to Promote Informed and Engaged Catchment Communities’, Applied Environmental Education and Communication, 3(4) pp.239-247.

Whelan, J. (2002) ‘Community Organising By the Book: A Critical Appraisal of the Midwest Academy Community Organiser Training Program’, Applied Environmental Education and Communication, 1(2) pp.115-122.

Whelan, J. (2000) ‘Learning to Save the World: Observations of training for effective advocacy in the Australian Environment Movement’, Convergence, 33(3) pp.62-74.

Refereed Conference Papers

Whelan, J. (2005) ‘Six reasons not to engage: confrontation, compromise and the commons’, Conference Proceedings, International Conference on Engaging Communities, jointly sponsored by the United Nations and the Queensland Government, Edited by D.Gardner and K.Scott.

Whelan, J. & Lyons, K. (2004) Rethinking deliberative governance: dissecting the Queensland landclearing campaign, Conference Proceedings, Ecopolitics VX.

Whelan, J. & La Rocca , S. (2004) ‘Persistent activists: strategies to sustain long-term environmental activism’, Conference Proceedings, Ecopolitics VX.

Whelan, J. (2003) ‘Are academics irrelevant? Case studies of collaborative research with community-based environmental advocates, Proceedings, Inside Out Conference ‘Charting Uncertainty: Capital, Community and Citizenship’, July 2003, Ipswich.

Non-refereed conference papers

Whelan, J. (2006) ‘Community Decision-making and Empowerment: Findings from Six Years of Citizen Science Research’, Coast to Coast National Conference Melbourne.

Whelan, J. & Oliver, P. (2003), ‘Insiders and Outsiders: Participatory decision-making and environmental advocac’y, International Riversymposium Conference Proceedings.

Whelan, J. (2004) ‘Reformers, Reactionaries and Reinvention’, New Forms of Activism Seminar, University of Technology Sydney, 12/3/04.

Whelan, J. (2001) ‘Powerful Voices: Learning to Speak out for the Environment’, Conference Proceedings, Biennial Conference on Communication and Environment, University of Cincinnati, Ohio, 27-30/7/01.

Other publications

Oakley, J., Dean, Anni & Whelan, J. 2013, ‘Campaigning to stop the fourth coal terminal in Newcastle’, Chain Reaction, Issue 117, Friends of the Earth, pp.24-25.

Dean, A. & Whelan, J. 2012, ‘Sick of Coal: Community attitudes toward a fourth coal terminal in Newcastle’, Hunter Community Environment Centre.

Mackenzie, J., Nolan, S. & Whelan, J. 2009, ‘Collaborative Water Planning: Guide to Monitoring and Evaluating Public Participation, Volume 5. Tropical Rivers and Coastal Knowledge Project, Griffith University.

Whelan et al 2009, Proposal for a TRaINING Package for agencies, industries and community groups in best-practice water planning processes. Report to the Tropical Rivers and Coastal Knowledge Program.

Whelan, J., Mackenzie, J. & Oliver, P. (2006) NRM Incentives Platform: Incentives to shape natural resource management practices in peri-urban landscapes.

Mackenzie, J., Whelan, J. & Oliver, P. (2006) Reconnecting Fragmented Landscapes: A Scoping Study on Natural Resource and Environmental Management in the Peri-Urban Landscapes of South East Queensland.

Whelan, J. (2006) Program Evaluation of the 2004–2006 Social, Research, Development and Extension (SE03) Scheme, Coastal CRC, Brisbane.

Whelan, J. (2006) Community Action for Sustainability, Spinifex, Queensland Conservation Council, p.6.

Whelan, J. & La Rocca (2006) ‘Campaigning to Win’, EnvironmentNSW, Nature Conservation Council of New South Wales, pp.12-13.

Whelan, J. & Oliver, P. (2006) ‘The place, limits and practice of collaboration: lessons from case studies in community participation in natural resource management’, Technical Report 56, Coastal CRC.

Whelan, J. & Lyons, K. (2005) ‘Strategic Environmental Campaigning: Reflections on the Queensland Landclearing VIctory’, Chain Reaction, pp.11-13.

Whelan, J. & La Rocca, S. (2005) ‘Education action supporting environment groups’, Report for the nature Conservation Council of New South Wales.

Oliver, P., Whelan, J. & Mackenzie, J. (2005) Bridges and barriers to collaborative natural resource management in South East Queensland. Coastal Technical Report 19, Cooperative Research Centre for Coastal Zone, Estuary and Waterway Management.

Whelan, J. (2005) ‘Environmental democracy up for grabs: a cross-roads for the Australian environment?’, Ecopolitics XVI Conference Proceedings, Griffith University.

Whelan, J. & La Rocca, S. (2005) ‘Mobilising community action for green peace in the Australia Pacific Region’, Report to Greenpeace Australia Pacific.

Oliver, P. & Whelan, J. (2004) ‘Regional Community-based planning: the challenge of participatory environmental governance’, Technical Report 44, Cooperative Research Centre for Coastal Zone, Estuary and Waterway Management.

La Rocca, S. & Whelan, J. (2004) ‘Environmental Advocacy Online’, Groundswell No.9. Friends of the Earth, Brisbane, p.10.

La Rocca, S., Whelan, A. & Whelan, J. (2003) Tree of hope, Brisbane’s rally against landclearing (mpeg 7mins)

Oliver, P. & Whelan, J. (2003) ‘Regional natural resource governance, collaboration and partnership’, Technical Report, Cooperative Research Centre for Coastal Zone, Estuary and Waterway Management.

La Rocca, S. & Whelan, J. (2002) ‘We All Use Water: promoting involved and informed communities’, Water, 29(4), pp.19-21.

Whelan, J. (2002) ‘Collective action frames: why theorise about how change happens?’, Spinifex, 23(3) p.17.

Whelan, J. (2001) ‘What do universities have to offer the environment movement?’ Spinifex, 22(2).

Whelan, J. (1997) ‘Making connections: Community attitudes to transport-related air pollution in metropolitan Brisbane’, Queensland Conservation Council, Brisbane.

What are people saying about us?

Leigh Ewbank, Yes2Renewables coordinator

Usually, organisers learn in the heat of battle – through trial and error, stress, and necessity. The Community Organising Fellowship has provided a rare opportunity to step off the campaign trail, slow down, and do some deep learning. The suite of tools explored in the program will influence my practice for years to come.

 By creating a ‘community of practice’ of organisers, those behind the fellowship have shown strategic leadership. The relationships the program has cultivated (within the cohort and between alumni) will pay dividends. 
The Change Agency
2015-03-17T20:58:10+11:00
Usually, organisers learn in the heat of battle – through trial and error, stress, and necessity. The Community Organising Fellowship has provided a rare opportunity to step off the campaign trail, slow down, and do some deep learning. The suite of tools explored in the program will influence my practice for years to come.  By creating a ‘community of practice’ of organisers, those behind the fellowship have shown strategic leadership. The relationships the program has cultivated (within the cohort and between alumni) will pay dividends. 

Anna Keenan, Students of Sustainability Collective 2006

Thank you for your involvement in SoS this year and for your continued commitment over the years to effecting sustainable environmental and social change. Your co-facilitated presentations on activist learning, campaign strategy and activist sustainability were all very well received, generating discussion, excitement, considered thought and motivation from the participants, including myself. Not only was the content inspirational, but to see the way that the two of you work together and so effectively co-facilitate was a lesson in itself. At your “Moving beyond Tactic-Led Campaigns”, you so successfully engaged all in the room and drew from their experiences that it was the most effective workshop I attended through the whole conference. Your involvement in SoS 2005 has had a significant impact on the future of Australian environmentalism by sharing the tools of individual, collective, and community organising, and inspiring us to advocate for and take action towards positive social change.
The Change Agency
2014-03-30T07:52:56+11:00
Thank you for your involvement in SoS this year and for your continued commitment over the years to effecting sustainable environmental and social change. Your co-facilitated presentations on activist learning, campaign strategy and activist sustainability were all very well received, generating discussion, excitement, considered thought and motivation from the participants, including myself. Not only was the content inspirational, but to see the way that the two of you work together and so effectively co-facilitate was a lesson in itself. At your “Moving beyond Tactic-Led Campaigns”, you so successfully engaged all in the room and drew from their experiences that it was the most effective workshop I attended through the whole conference. Your involvement in SoS 2005 has had a significant impact on the future of Australian environmentalism by sharing the tools of individual, collective, and community organising, and inspiring us to advocate for and take action towards positive social change.
Julie Lyford

Julie Lyford, Groundswell Gloucester

Such a long fight. Without you and the Change Agency we would be floundering. Thank you so much for your energy, passion, wisdom and guidance and for all that you do in changing the world.
The Change Agency
2016-09-30T13:24:47+10:00
Julie Lyford
Such a long fight. Without you and the Change Agency we would be floundering. Thank you so much for your energy, passion, wisdom and guidance and for all that you do in changing the world.

Naomi Hodgson, community organiser, NW NSW

I can emphatically endorse the value of this time to build skills and awareness in strategic thinking and in specific and practical community organising tools. I am sure that with concerted application of the course content I will become a significantly more confident and effective organiser. Furthermore, the value of the relationships that have been forged among the cohort offer great potential for future collaboration and support to help build a more coordinated, cooperative and powerful environment movement in Australia.
The Change Agency
2015-03-17T20:49:16+11:00
I can emphatically endorse the value of this time to build skills and awareness in strategic thinking and in specific and practical community organising tools. I am sure that with concerted application of the course content I will become a significantly more confident and effective organiser. Furthermore, the value of the relationships that have been forged among the cohort offer great potential for future collaboration and support to help build a more coordinated, cooperative and powerful environment movement in Australia.

Manny Pasqualini, Community Power Agency

One highlight for me is the focus on relational organising; the importance of taking the time to really get to know the people you work with. The deeper the relationship, the better it stands up to testing times and the sweeter it feels when your movement achieves success.

 The diversity present within this year’s cohort is another major highlight for me. To be able to spend this time learning and practicing day in and day out with people from right across the country and right across the breadth of the climate action movement has been an honour. To share this time and space with two wonderfully inspiring indigenous Australians has filled a gap in my education until now and opened up a real sense of belonging to an Australia that I want to be a part of.
The Change Agency
2015-03-17T21:10:26+11:00
One highlight for me is the focus on relational organising; the importance of taking the time to really get to know the people you work with. The deeper the relationship, the better it stands up to testing times and the sweeter it feels when your movement achieves success.  The diversity present within this year’s cohort is another major highlight for me. To be able to spend this time learning and practicing day in and day out with people from right across the country and right across the breadth of the climate action movement has been an honour. To share this time and space with two wonderfully inspiring indigenous Australians has filled a gap in my education until now and opened up a real sense of belonging to an Australia that I want to be a part of.
John Hepburn

John Hepburn, Outreach Manager, Greenpeace Australia Pacific

When you stop learning, you stop growing. For social movements and organisations to grow and develop, they need to learn from their successes and failures. The Change Agency have played a key role in helping Greenpeace to do this, to reflect on our work, to focus on what is effective, and to map out some exciting new strategic directions. They've supported our staff and volunteers with some great practical training on campaign strategy, and, of course, they've been a joy to work with.
The Change Agency
2014-03-30T07:35:05+11:00
John Hepburn
When you stop learning, you stop growing. For social movements and organisations to grow and develop, they need to learn from their successes and failures. The Change Agency have played a key role in helping Greenpeace to do this, to reflect on our work, to focus on what is effective, and to map out some exciting new strategic directions. They've supported our staff and volunteers with some great practical training on campaign strategy, and, of course, they've been a joy to work with.

Claire Van Herpen, Environment Victoria

The Community Organising fellowship provides a positive and nurturing environment in which to learn and apply the practical skills required to effectively mobilise communities to create change. It's a great opportunity to learn from others in the environmental movement and provides space for collaboration and reflection.
The Change Agency
2015-03-17T19:26:27+11:00
The Community Organising fellowship provides a positive and nurturing environment in which to learn and apply the practical skills required to effectively mobilise communities to create change. It's a great opportunity to learn from others in the environmental movement and provides space for collaboration and reflection.

Ben Margetts, Australian Youth Climate Coalition 2007

I wanted to express how grateful I was for the experience to work with Sam and James. It was very special for me to interact with a part of social movements that I feel a lot of affinity with. I also think tCA shows a great example of 'best practice' in regard to organisational interactions. We at the AYCC have benefited immensely from working with you not just in your capacity as trainers, and the learning that was facilitated, but also with tCA as an organisation.
The Change Agency
2014-03-30T07:33:22+11:00
I wanted to express how grateful I was for the experience to work with Sam and James. It was very special for me to interact with a part of social movements that I feel a lot of affinity with. I also think tCA shows a great example of 'best practice' in regard to organisational interactions. We at the AYCC have benefited immensely from working with you not just in your capacity as trainers, and the learning that was facilitated, but also with tCA as an organisation.

Anna Rose, ASEN Convenor and NUS National Environment Officer 2005

The Change Agency has contributed enormously to strengthening the student environment movement in Australia and helping us shift to a culture of strategic thinking, planning and reflection on our activism. The training and advice provided by the Change agency over the last twelve months has been invaluable to tens of campus environment collectives and we are already seeing tangible results in real wins in our Campus Clean Energy Camp. Thank you Change Agency!
The Change Agency
2014-03-30T07:37:22+11:00
The Change Agency has contributed enormously to strengthening the student environment movement in Australia and helping us shift to a culture of strategic thinking, planning and reflection on our activism. The training and advice provided by the Change agency over the last twelve months has been invaluable to tens of campus environment collectives and we are already seeing tangible results in real wins in our Campus Clean Energy Camp. Thank you Change Agency!

Cate Faehrmann, Director, Nature Conservation Council NSW, 2005

We did a two-day workshop with The Change Agency early this year which provided our organisation with some much-needed tools for strategic campaigning and planning. There was nothing but positive feedback from our staff and board members about what they gained from the two days spent with James and Sam. The power mapping exercise was particularly insightful for staff and board members alike and as a result our campaigns are more pro-active - we are seeing results!
The Change Agency
2014-03-30T07:51:49+11:00
We did a two-day workshop with The Change Agency early this year which provided our organisation with some much-needed tools for strategic campaigning and planning. There was nothing but positive feedback from our staff and board members about what they gained from the two days spent with James and Sam. The power mapping exercise was particularly insightful for staff and board members alike and as a result our campaigns are more pro-active - we are seeing results!
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The Change Agency