Claire Timperley

Dr Claire Timperley profile picture

Lecturer School of History, Philosophy, Political Science & International Relations


Teaching in 2019


  • BA Hons Victoria University of Wellington
  • MSc London School of Economics and Political Science
  • PhD University of Virginia


Claire teaches courses on political theory and New Zealand politics. Prior to joining the programme, she completed her MSc at the London School of Economics and Political Science and her doctorate at the University of Virginia as a New Zealand Fulbright scholar. Her research interests include settler colonialism and decolonisation, accounts of historic and contemporary justice, identity politics and multiculturalism, feminist political theory and gender politics, politics of resistance and New Zealand politics.

Current research

The overarching question that drives my research is how we might achieve justice for members of historically oppressed groups, especially indigenous communities and women.

Indigenous politics remains an under-appreciated field in political theory, despite being an essential frame for understanding and achieving justice in settler societies. My research centres on a current book project and related papers, which interrogate dominant approaches in political theory to indigenous politics and historic injustice. In this work, I argue that the very concept of indigeneity, as currently defined on the basis of settler logic, undermines even the best efforts to address past injustices.

I am also working on a project on critical pedagogy and recognition theory with Dr. Kate Schick. This project focuses on micro-political and experimental sites of resistance and refusal within the university, seeking to identify and explore pedagogies that unsettle the dominant neoliberal paradigm. Our work builds on a collaborative interdisciplinary initiative on teaching and critical theory at Victoria University of Wellington – the Critical Theory Project.

I am keen to supervise research students working on projects on settler colonialism/decolonisation, feminist political thought and gender politics, political theory and New Zealand politics.

Recent publications

  • ‘Constellations of Indigeneity: The Power of Definition’, Contemporary Political Theory (forthcoming).
  • He moana pukepuke: Navigating the gendered and ethnic inequality in conference attendance of early career academics’, with Kathryn Sutherland, Marc Wilson and Meegan Hall, Gender & Education (forthcoming).
  • 'Jacinda Ardern: A Transformational Leader?', Women Talking Politics, Research Magazine of the New Zealand Political Studies Association, 2018.
  • ‘Jacinda Ardern: A Political Presence’, in Stephen Levine (ed.), Stardust and Substance: The New Zealand General Election of 2017, Wellington: Victoria University Press, 2018, pp. 339-350.
  • Justice in Indigenous Land Claims: A Typology of Problems’, Politics, Groups and Identities, 2017. DOI: 10.1080/21565503.2017.1411282.
  • ‘Women in the Academy: Key Studies on Gender in Political Science’, Political Science, 65 (1), June 2013, pp. 99-133.

Selected Conference Papers

  • 2019 'Hidden in Plain Sight: Power and Pedagogy' (with Kate Schick), Pan-European Conference on International Relations (Sofia, Bulgaria)
  • 2018 ‘Interrogating ‘Knowledge as Power’: Wikipedia as a resource for challenging epistemologies’, Tertiary Education Research in New Zealand Conference (Wellington, NZ)
  • 2018 ‘Centring Indigeneity in Theories of Historic Injustice’, New Zealand Political Studies Association Conference (Wellington, NZ)
  • 2018 ‘The Macro Effect of Micro Assignments: Supporting Student Transitions to University Study’, Ako Victoria 2018 (Wellington, NZ)
  • 2018 ‘Justice in Indigenous Land Claims: Narrative Approaches to Rectification’, Western Political Science Association Conference (San Francisco, USA)
  • 2017 ‘Jacinda Ardern: The Campaign and Coverage’, The 2017 New Zealand Post-Election Conference (Wellington, NZ)


  • 2018 Victoria University Early Career Teaching Award
  • 2013 University of Virginia All-University Graduate Teaching Award, School of Arts and Science
  • 2013 Allison J. Meloy Outstanding Graduate Teaching Award in Politics
  • 2012 Dumas Malone Graduate Research Fellowship
  • 2012 Raven Society Fellowship for Interdisciplinary Research
  • 2009 University of Virginia President’s Fellowship (five year award)
  • 2009 New Zealand Fulbright Scholar
  • 2008 London School of Economics and Political Science Graduate Merit Award


Teaching in 2019