Sandy specialises in the social dimensions of extractive industries.

Sandy’s doctoral research examined how coal mining project teams in Australia construct and assess social risk. Her general research interests include social risks and impacts, risk governance, risk communication, mine closure, sustainable development, social performance in the extractives sector, boundary objects and organisations, framing theory and communication management. She is also interested in multidisciplinary, multi-actor approaches to problem solving.


Sandy has 25+ years' experience in the mineral resources sector - on site, in government, in a corporate environment and in consulting. She has worked as a sessional academic at UQ, predominantly in the schools of Mechanical and Mining Engineering, and Communication and Arts.

Key Publications

Kemp, D., Worden, S., and Owen, J.R. (2016). Differentiated social risk: Rebound dynamics and sustainability performance in mining, Resources Policy, 50: 19-26.

Is the mining industry misdiagnosing social risk? Risk and Resilience Mining Solutions 2016, Vancouver, Canada, 14-16 November, 2016.

Assessing the social risk of coal mining projects, 3rd ISA Forum of Sociology, The Futures We Want: Global Sociology and the Struggle for a Better World, Vienna, 19-14 July 2016.