Professor Anne Smith

Contact details

Professor Anne Smith
BHSc BA(Otago); MEd PhD(Alta); FRSNZ
Position/Fellowship type:
New Zealand-UK Link Foundation Visiting Professorship, 2013
Fellowship term:
01-Apr-2013 to 30-Jun-2013
Central Services of the School
Home institution:
University of Otago, New Zealand
Related institutes:
Institute of Commonwealth Studies
364 Leith Walk, DUNEDIN 9016, NEW ZEALAND. PO Box 56, DUNEDIN 9054, NEW ZEALAND
00 64 3 479 6524
Email address:

Research Summary and Profile

Research interests:
Civil Rights, Fellowships, Human rights
Summary of research interests and expertise:

Anne Smith’s research has focused on the well-being and rights of children in their everyday lives. Originally trained in child development, she has moved towards a more interdisciplinary perspective on childhood, framed by sociocultural, childhood studies and children’s rights theories. She has explored the dimensions of family, early childhood centre, school, institutional, and legal frameworks that impact on children’s well-being and rights. Her interest in children as citizens and social actors has led her to seek children’s perspectives – for example on their participation in classroom learning, and their social relationships. She has a particular interest in the translation of research findings into good policies and practices for children.

Anne Smith taught Child Development, Gender and Education, and Early Childhood courses in the Department of Education between 1974 and 1995. She collaborated in the establishment of the Dunedin Community Childcare Association in 1979, to provide high quality centre-based and home-based childcare. Her involvement in this community project led her to participate in local and national policy-making arenas that have had a long-term impact on New Zealand’s Early Childhood Education system. The award of an Honorary Doctorate in Education by the University of Oulu Finland in 1998 recognised her contribution to ECE. Anne Smith became the inaugural Director of the Children’s Issues Centre at the University of Otago in 1995[1]. The Centre carried out interdisciplinary research, outreach education and advocacy. The work of the centre has had a national and international impact. For example our socio-legal research, impacted on the Care of Children Act 2004, and our research on family discipline was one influence on the abolition of physical punishment in New Zealand in 2007. In 2009 Anne was awarded the American Association of Orthopsychiatry American Orthopsychiatric Association Marion Langer Award for research and advocacy with children. Anne Smith retired from full-time academic work in 2006 but has continued to work on research and thesis supervision. She has just submitted a completed manuscript to her publisher of a book entitled Understanding Children and Childhood.



[1] The centre has recently been renamed Centre for Research on Children and Families.

Project summary relevant to Fellowship:

Anne Smith's fellowship report

Publication Details

Related publications/articles:

Date Details
2012 Smith, A. B. Recognising children as citizens: can this enhance solidarity? In E.Johansson, & D. Berthelsen (Eds.). Spaces for Solidarity and Individualism in Educational Contexts (pp. 15-32). Göteborg Studies in Educational Sciences, no 318. Göteborg: Acta Universitatis Gotoburgensis.


2012 Powell, M.A., Taylor, N. & Smith, A.B. Constructions of rural childhood: challenging dominant perspectives. Children’s Geographies, 11 (1), 1-14.

Journal articles

2011 Smith, A. B. Respecting children’s rights and agency: Theoretical insights into ethical research procedures. In B. Perry, D. Harcourt & T. Waller (Eds.) Young children’s perspectives: Ethics, theory and research (pp. 11-26). London: Routledge.


2011 Durrant, J. E. & Smith, A.B. ((Editors) Global pathways to abolishing physical punishment: realising children’s rights. New York: Routledge.

Edited Book

2010 Carr, M., Smith, A.B., Duncan, J., Jones, C., Lee, W. & Marshall, K. Learning in the Making: Disposition and Design in Early Education. Sense Publishers: Rotterdam and New York.

Edited Book

2009 Taylor, N. & Smith, A.B. (Editors). Children as citizens? International voices. Dunedin: Otago University Press.

Edited Book

2009 Lawrence, J., & Smith, A. B. Discipline in context: families disciplinary practices with their under five-year-old children. Wellington,New Zealand: Blue Skies Report No 30/09 to Families Commission.


2005 Smith, A.B., Gollop, M.M., Taylor, N.J., Marshall, K. (Eds.). The discipline and guidance of children: Messages from Research. Wellington: Office of the Commissioner for Children

Edited Book

Relevant Events

Related events:

Date Details
Programme of public lectures

NZ-UK Link Foundation Visiting Professorship programme of public lectures April-June 2013 Flyer [PDF]

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