Kylie designs action research processes to help a variety of stakeholders identify, analyse and respond to the challenges of social and environmental change. Storytelling, impact mapping, network analysis, new qualitative and quantitative data collection and evaluation are among the various tools she uses. Kylie has particular action research and capacity building experience in an international development context, especially in Papua New Guinea, where she has worked for the past 10 years. Her work in Papua New Guinea has included community engagement on development impacts; targeted research-skills training for government and non-government organisation staff; and has focused on establishing new collaborations between layers of government on overlapping policy issues.
Kylie’s research background is in the field of sustainability and business. She is author of Corporate Social Responsibility and Natural Resource Conflict (Routledge, 2016), which explores the dynamic nexus of business, conflict and peace building. Kylie was awarded a PhD in Sociology from the Australian National University in 2012.
Kylie is on leave from UTS until June 2020, working as Director of Centre for Social Research at Divine Word University, Papua New Guinea.
Areas of Expertise
- Conflict and Peacebuilding
- Corporate Social Responsibility
- Social Development, Research
- Governance and Transparency
- Higher Education
- Human Rights and Business
- Institutional Capacity Building
- Natural resource management
- Organsiational learning
- Papua New Guinea
- Policy & Strategy (incl. Sustainability)
- Action Research and Action Learning
- Policy-relevant briefings
- Workshop facilitation
- Capacity building and research skills development
- Teaching and supervision (Higher Education)
Can supervise: YES
- Business and Sustainability
- Social Theory and Research Methods
- Natural Resource Conflict
- Business, Human Rights and Peace building
- Oil, Gas and Mining for Development
- Community Engagement
- Organisational change and learning
Boronyak, L, Jacobs, B, McKenna, K, Dem, F, Pommoh, K, Sui, S & Jimbudo, M 2018, Engagement on Biodiversity Conservation and Climate Change Adaptation, Prepared for USAID by the Institute for Sustainable Futures, University of Technology Sydney, Australia and the New Guinea Binatang Research Centre..View/Download from: UTS OPUS
This book examines the possibilities and limitations of corporate social responsibility in minimising the violent conflict often associated with natural resource exploitation.
Riedy, C, Wynne, L, McKenna, K & Daly, M 2019, ''It's a Great Idea for Other People': Cohousing as a Housing Option for Older Australians', Urban Policy and Research.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
© 2018, © 2018 Editorial Board, Urban Policy and Research. Older Australians face housing challenges including supply, accessibility, affordability, security of tenure and isolation. This article examines the potential for cohousing to address these challenges. In interviews, professionals indicated that cohousing promises benefits for older people, but identified financial and planning barriers. In contrast, focus groups with older people found significant resistance to the concept of shared living; many participants did not see value in cohousing. Resistance stemmed from negative associations with cohousing and cultural lack of familiarity with shared living arrangements. Cohousing has an image problem in Australia that needs to be overcome if it is to thrive.
McKenna, K 2016, 'Land of the Unexpected: Natural Resource Conflict and Peace Building in Papua New Guinea', Business, Peace and Sustainable Development, vol. 2016, no. 7, pp. 32-49.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
This paper discusses the relevance and utility of the existing literature on business and peace for resolving armed conflicts related to natural resources. The paper argues that this scholarship is valuable in so far as it opens debate on the potential positive contributions of extractive companies to peacebuilding processes. However this scholarship primarily looks at areas affected by conflict to consider ways that companies with no previous connection to the area might establish a productive business. What is missing in this analysis is a critical engagement with the fact that resource companies are often heavily implicated in the causes of conflict, not just affected by the consequences. Drawing on a case study of Bougainville (Papua New Guinea), the paper highlights numerous roles for business in peacebuilding not previously identified in the business and peace literature. These contributions include very precise expectations for a company that was deeply entangled in the Bougainville conflict, yet wants to return to the island to resume mining. This finding has important implications for future research. In order to ensure the relevance of this scholarship to the extractive sector, there is a need to identify peacebuilding roles for an industry whose activities are often a key factor in the escalation of violence.
Ford, J & McKenna, K 2008, 'Peacebuilding and the private sector: Scoping a research agenda', Centre for International Governance and Justice, vol. 4.
This Issues Paper describes some common issues arising in research that the authors are conducting on the role of corporations and the private sector in peacebuilding. The Paper aims to shape research and discussion on the topic by identifying some of the social, cultural, policy, regulatory and legal issues involved. Both authors seek to maximize a positive role for these actors (and to constrain harmful practices), although this Paper notes the differing emphases and approaches of the respective research projects.
McKenna, K & Braithwaite, J 2011, 'Large corporations and obstacles to peace in Papua' in King, P, Elmslie, J & Webb-Gannon, C (eds), Comprehending West Papua, Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies, Sydney, pp. 318-338.
McKenna, K The National Research Institute, Papua New Guinea 2019, Status and implementation of the Bougainville Peace Agreement and implications for referendum, The National Research Institute, Papua New Guinea.View/Download from: UTS OPUS
McKenna, K SSGM In Brief, 16 2015, Australia's new aid paradigm and the natural resource curse.
McKenna, K SSGM In Brief, 35 2015, Mining and reconciliation: Negotiating the future of the Panguna mine in Bougainville.
McKenna, K SSGM In Brief, 61 2015, There is relief that it seems to be working': BP's Integrated Community Based Security Strategy in West Papua.
McKenna, K SSGM In Brief, 38 2014, Greed and Grievance or scales of justice?.
McKenna, K SSGM In Brief, 56 2014, Operationalising the United Nations' 'Protect, respect and remedy' framework at the Porgera gold mine, Papua New Guinea.
McKenna, K 2015, ''There Is Relief That It Seems to Be Working': BP's Integrated Community-Based Security Strategy in West Papua', State, Society and Governance in Melanesia.
McKenna, K 2015, 'BP, security and human rights in West Papua', New Mandala.
McKenna, K 2013, 'Resource development and peace building in Melanesia', Development Policy Centre.
Divine Word University, Papua New Guinea