Professor Mark Moran

Professor-Development Effectiveness

Institute for Social Science Research
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
+61 7 336 52594


Mark Moran is Professor and Group Leader of Development Effectiveness at the Institute for Social Science Research, UQ’s flagship unit for applied social science research and one of the largest social science research institutes in Australia.

Professor Moran has a unique background that includes both social science research and applied development projects, in a career spanning academia, non-profits, government and consultancy. His cross-sectoral career is a strength for his current research, which focuses on the science of development effectiveness—toward forging new collaborations between academia and development practice.

His work traverses Indigenous and international development contexts, including Aboriginal Australia, Native America, Bolivia, China, Papua New Guinea, Timor Leste and Lesotho. Additionally, he has comprehensive research and practical experience in complex and politicised development contexts, including project and stakeholder management, governance, public finance management, participation, community planning, social housing, water and sanitation.

Professor Moran actively translates his research and professional experience through innovative teaching at UQ. He is Program Director for the Master of Leadership in Global Development (MLGD), Australia’s only coursework master’s program that combines theory, leadership, management and business acumen. He is also the Academic Lead of Australia’s first MicroMasters® credential. The Leadership in Global Development MicroMasters is an innovative online course series delivered through edX, which forms a core component of the MLGD. He also delivers a professional development short course, Advanced Place-Based Development Approaches, to industry, NGO and government partners.

Among his publications is Serious Whitefella Stuff: When Solutions Became the Problem in Indigenous Affairs, a popular text that applies international development practices to local Indigenous communities in remote Australia.

Research Interests

  • The science of development practice
  • Decentralised governance and public finance reform
  • Complex adaptive systems
  • Measuring the effectiveness of development assistance
  • Home ownership and social housing on communal title land
  • Village water, sanitation, roads and appropriate technology


  • B Civil Engineering (Honours), Queensland University of Technology
  • PhD in Geography and Planning, The University of Queensland


View all Publications


  • Doctor Philosophy

  • (2017) Doctor Philosophy

View all Supervision



Book Chapter

Journal Article

Conference Publication

Other Outputs

Grants (Administered at UQ)

PhD and MPhil Supervision

Note for students: Professor Mark Moran is not currently available to take on new students.

Current Supervision

  • Doctor Philosophy — Principal Advisor

    Other advisors:

Completed Supervision

  • (2017) Doctor Philosophy — Associate Advisor

    Other advisors: