Associate Professor Alex Broom
Associate Professor Alex Broom
Associate Professor of Sociology
Australian Research Council Future Fellow
Phone:  (+61 7) 336 52022
Fax:  (+61 7) 336 51544

Room 437, Level 4,
Michie Building (#9), St Lucia Campus


PhD (Sociology) La Trobe University (Australia)
MA (Sociology) University of Canterbury (NZ)
BA - Hons (Sociology) University of Canterbury (NZ)


Head of Sociology, School of Social Science, 2014
Associate Professor of Sociology and Australian Research Council Future Fellow, 2011 - present
Honorary Professor, Faculty of Health, University of Technology Sydney, 2014 - present
Visiting Professor, Faculty of Science and Technology, The University of Westminster, London, 2013-present
Honorary Associate Professor, Faculty of Health Sciences, The University of Sydney, 2010-present
Honorary Principal Research Fellow, Mater Medical Research Institute, Brisbane, Australia, 2013-present
Visiting Professor, Centre for Biomedicine and Society, School of Social Sciences, Brunel University London, United Kingdom, 2011 - present
Visiting Scholar, Department of Sociology, University of California, Berkeley, 2011
Senior Lecturer in Health Sociology, The University of Sydney, 2009 - 2011
Lecturer/Senior Lecturer in Sociology, The University of Newcastle, 2007 - 2009
UQ Postdoctoral Research Fellow (Sociology), The University of Queensland, 2006 - 2007
Postdoctoral Research Fellow, The University of Leeds, 2004 - 2006

Research Interests:
  • Sociology of health and illness
  • Sociology of traditional, complementary and alternative medicines
  • Men’s health and masculinities
  • Qualitative methodologies
  • Cancer and end-of-life care
  • Organisational and inter-professional dynamics
  • Health in developing countries
  • Social theory as applied to health.

Please follow this link to find out more about Associate Professor Broom’s research profile.

Recent Research Projects:

2014-16 Australian Research Council Discovery Grant [DP140100238] The rise of complementary self-care: A national sociological study of women's strategies for coping and living with chronic illness [with Adams, Davidson, Sibbritt] $350,000

2012-15 Australian Research Council Linkage Grant [LP120200268] Pathways to and through palliative care: A sociological study of patient, carer and clinician experiences at the end of life. [with Adams, Yates, Kirby, Good, Wootton, Hardy] $164,830 [Total cash and in-kind $591,411]

2011-15 Australian Research Council Future Fellowship [FT100100294] The changing landscapes of medical pluralism: a sociological analysis of patient experiences and decision making in Australia, India and Brazil. $656,448

2011-13 Australian Research Council Discovery Project [DP110104636] Navigating back pain care: a sociological study of women's illness pathways within and between intersecting social worlds. [with Adams, Refshauge, Sibbritt] $391,622

2010-12 Australian Research Council Discovery Grant [DP1094765] Therapeutic pluralism in pregnancy, labour and birthing: Decision-making, communication and interprofessional dynamics [with Adams, Gallois and Sibbritt] $270,000

2009-10 AUSAID Australian Development Research Awards Masculinities and Violence in Indonesia and India [with Nilan et al] $116,526

2008-11 National Health and Medical Research Council Complementary medicine use among mid-age women: a national mixed-methods study across the urban-rural divide [with Adams et al] $450,771



The art of letting go: How does it feel to tell someone they are going to die?

Alex Broom interviewed on ABC Radio about how doctors tell patients 'It is Time to Transition to Palliative Care' (audio)

Alex Broom interviewed by ABC Radio about ‘Men’s Health and Obesity’

Cancer treatment in India and its alternatives


Research Staff and Students:

Dr Emma Kirby (Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Sociology)
Dr John MacArtney (Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Sociology)

Stephen O'Brien (PhD Candidate)
Shari Bonnette (PhD Candidate)
Amie Steel (PhD Candidate)
Jo Ragan (PhD Candidate)
Vanessa Thompson (PhD Candidate)
Glenda Jessop (PhD Candidate)
Anita Niehues (PhD Candidate)
Natasha Gravill (PhD Candidate)
Laura Cox (PhD Candidate)
Stephanie Raymond (PhD Candidate)

Project sites:

Research program in traditional, complementary and alternative medicine

Research program in cancer, palliative and end-of-life care
Recent Books:

 Book Cover - Health Culture and Religion in South Asia Book Cover Health Culture and Religion in South Asia Indian Version Book Cover Mens Health.jpg Book Cover Mens Health.jpg
 Book Cover TCAM and Cancer Care Book Cover Therapuetic Pluralism 



Broom, A., Kirby, E., Good, P., Wootton, J. and Adams, J. (2014) The troubles of telling: Managing communication about the end of life. Qualitative Health Research Vol. 24 No. 2 pp. 151 - 162.

Broom, A., Meurk, C., Adams, J. & Sibbritt, D (2014) Networks of knowledge or just old wives’ tales? A diary-based analysis of women’s self-care practices and everyday lay expertise. Health: An Interdisciplinary Journal for the Social Study of Health, Illness and Medicine DOI: 10.1177/1363459313497610.

Broom, A., Meurk, C., Adams, J. and Sibbritt, D. (2014) My health, my responsibility? Complementary medicine and self (health) care. Journal of Sociology DOI:10.1177/1440783312467098.

Meurk, C., Broom, A., Adams, J. (2014) Relative bodies of knowledge: pluralism, dualism and maternal-foetal individuation. Social Theory and Health doi:10.1057/sth.2013.26

Broom, A., Kirby, E., Good, P., Wootton, J., & Adams, J. (2013) The art of letting go: Referral to palliative care and its discontents. Social Science and Medicine, 78: 9-16.
Broom, A., & Kirby, E. (2013) The end of life and the family: Hospice patients’ views on dying as relational. Sociology of Health and Illness, 35(4): 499-513.
Broom, A., & Cavenagh, J. (2010) Masculinity, moralities and being cared for: An exploration of experiences of living and dying in a hospice. Social Science and Medicine, 71(5): 869-876.
Broom, A., Adams, J., & Tovey, P. (2009) Evidence-based healthcare in practice: A study of clinical resistance, professional deskilling, and inter-specialty differentiation in oncology. Social Science and Medicine 68(1): 192–200.
Broom, A., Cheshire, L., & Emmison, M. (2009) Qualitative researchers' understandings of their practice and the implications for data archiving and sharing. Sociology, 43(6): 1163-1180.
Broom, A., Doron, A., & Tovey, P. (2009) The inequalities of medical pluralism: Hierarchies of health, the politics of tradition and the economies of care in Indian oncology. Social Science and Medicine 69(5): 698-706.
Broom, A., & Tovey, P. (2007) Therapeutic Pluralism? Evidence, power and legitimacy in UK cancer services. Sociology of Health and Illness,29(3): 551-569.
Broom, A., & Tovey, P. (2007) The dialectical tension between individuation and depersonalisation in cancer patients’ mediation of complementary, alternative and biomedical cancer treatments. Sociology, 41(6): 1021–1039.
Tovey, P., & Broom, A. (2007) Oncologists’ and specialist cancer nurses’ approaches to complementary and alternative medicine use and their impact on patient action. Social Science and Medicine,64: 2550-2564.
Broom, A. (2005) Virtually He@lthy: A study into the impact of Internet use on disease experience and the doctor/patient relationship. Qualitative Health Research 15(3), pp325-345.
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