Dr Jenny Munro


School of Social Science
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
+61 7 336 52204


I am a cultural anthropologist and I work mainly in West Papua (Tanah Papua), eastern Indonesia, though I also have some research experience in Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands. My research interests are in gender, health and development. I am interested in the various ways that indigenous Papuans engage with and theorise the Indonesian state and international development agendas, especially sexual and reproductive health, HIV/AIDS, and schooling. I am currently writing about indigenous health activism and approaches to HIV education and care, and researching indigenous women’s experiences of antenatal care and hospital delivery, especially caesarean births. A related dimension of my research focuses on gender, violence and alcohol in Papua, and I am working with the UN's Partners 4 Prevention on primary prevention of violence in Jayapura, Papua. My research is ethnographic, qualitative, and collaborative, and I enjoy working with research practitioners in Indonesia, Australia and beyond. I am a chief investigator on the ARC Discovery Project, 'Understanding Social, Economic and Health Vulnerabilities in Indonesia' led by Professor Lynette Parker (UWA). I enjoy teaching medical anthropology and gender and development and have extensive experience working with Pacific islanders to enhance social science research skills. I have advised RHD students working on gender, health, development policy, and urban ethnography in the Pacific (Papua New Guinea, Indonesia, Samoa and Fiji).

Research Impacts

I am the only foreign researcher who is actively studying the HIV epidemic in Papua, which my research examines at the interface of political and cultural conditions and health system dynamics. My research has contributed evidence that challenges the way that HIV interventions are developed and implemented. A significant achievement of collaborative research with local NGOs was a workshop, funded by a competitive grant from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and held in West Papua in 2014, to develop a strategy to address the HIV epidemic in indigenous Papuan communities. (Indigenous Papuans are disproportionately affected relative to the large migrant population). The workshop brought together 60 participants from a collaborative research project I led on indigenous women’s experiences of HIV education and treatment in Manokwari, West Papua, and Wamena, Papua. The workshop produced the first Indigenous HIV Prevention Strategy for Tanah Papua, a comprehensive strategy that defines research, policy, and community priorities.

My research has also informed the Australian government’s aid programming on HIV and reproductive health in Indonesia, and I reviewed DFAT’s Papua Health Strengthening proposal in 2015. Earlier I conducted research on HIV program development in West Papua funded by the Canadian government's aid program. I have 3 years experience co-convening and teaching an intensive course on social science research skills for Pacific Islanders (including Timor Leste and Papua). I have collaborated with numerous civil society organisations, have worked closely with Papuan researchers over the past five years, and mentor several Papuans in Australia who are undertaking postgraduate research on HIV/AIDS, gender, and development. These aspects of my research have contributed to fostering better research in Indonesia and improving relationships between local and foreign researchers and their institutions.


  • Doctor of Philosophy, Australian National University


View all Publications


  • Doctor Philosophy

  • Master Philosophy

  • Doctor Philosophy

View all Supervision



Book Chapter

Journal Article

Other Outputs

Grants (Administered at UQ)

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Current Supervision

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

  • Master Philosophy — Principal Advisor

    Other advisors:

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

    Other advisors: