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Professor in the Geographies of Heritage, Western Sydney University

Emma Waterton is a Professor at Western Sydney University, where she is affiliated with both the School of Social Sciences and the Institute for Culture and Society. She holds a BA (Anthropology) from UQ and an MA (Archaeological Heritage Management) and a PhD from the University of York. Her research explores the interface between heritage, identity, memory and affect at a range of heritage sites.

She is author of Politics, Policy and the Discourses of Heritage in Britain (2010, Palgrave Macmillan) and co-author of the Semiotics of Heritage Tourism (with Steve Watson; 2014; Channel View Publications), and Heritage, Communities and Archaeology (with Laurajane Smith; 2009, Duckworth).


  • 2014–present
    Associate professor, Western Sydney University
  • 2012–2014
    Senior lecturer, University of Western Sydney
  • 2010–2012
    Lecturer, University of Western Sydney
  • 2006–2010
    RCUK Academic Fellow, Keele University


  • 2008 
    University of York, PhD
  • 2004 
    University of York, MA
  • 1999 
    University of Queensland, BA (Anthropology)

Grants and Contracts

  • 2012
    Photos of the Past: The negotiation of identity and belonging at Australian tourism sites
    Sole investigator
    Funding Source:
    Australian Research Council

Professional Memberships

  • Geographical Society of New South Wales
  • Landscape Research Group
  • Home Commission
  • Association of Critical Heritage Studies