Ruth DeSouza

Thanks for visiting my website. As a nurse, writer, speaker and researcher with a passionate interest in culture and health. I have combined my academic career with governance and community involvement. I talk and write in popular and scholarly venues about mental health, maternal mental health, race, ethnicity, biculturalism, multiculturalism, settlement, refugee resettlement, and cultural safety. I serve on the editorial boards of the Journal of Transcultural NursingThe Women’s Studies Journal (The Women’s Studies Association, NZ) and The Australian College of Nursing (ACN)’s Hive publication. There’s a fun interview with me you can read at Women’s Agenda , another in the Inner North West Primary Care Partnership feature: Under the Spotlight and this one I did for The Australian Women’s and Gender Studies Association (AWGSA). 


I am the  Stream Leader for Research, Policy and Evaluation at the Centre for Culture, Ethnicity and Health (CEH) in Richmond, a really exciting organisation based at North Richmond Community Health Centre. The Centre has had a reputation for serving a culturally and linguistically diverse community in North Richmond and beyond since 1974. I am also a Member of the Research Institute on Social Cohesion (Department of Premier and Cabinet, State Government of Victoria). To read more about my research see my research page.

I have a blog on this site where I research and rehearse ideas in different formats and for different audiences than my scholarly work—Its purpose is to contest how racialised ethnic identities are represented in the public sphere and to offer an alternative to dominant discourses. Thanks Tseen Khoo for adding me to the blog roll of Asian voices in Australia. Tseen has constructed a list for what she calls a (savvy, highly intelligent, research-oriented) newcomer. I am also the founder and moderator of the Aotearoa Ethnic Network (AEN), an 11 year old email list that connects New Zealanders interested in the “ethnic” question.

My work explores alternative frames such as postcolonial feminist theory and cultural safety, that highlight the political economy of colonisation, and racialisation. As a migrant who has grown up and been professionally socialised in a settler context, I see indigenous rights as a fundamental basis for a broader social justice agenda to eliminate health inequities.

You can contact me at ruth at