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Melissa Johnston

Postdoctoral Fellow at Monash University’s Centre for Gender, Peace and Security

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Biography

Melissa Johnston is a Postdoctoral Fellow at Monash GPS. 

Her doctoral dissertation, “The Political Economy of Gender Intervention: Social Forces, Kinship, Violence, and Finance in Post-Conflict Timor-Leste”, accounts for the uneven outcomes of gender programming by international development agencies. It argues the outcomes of international interventions on gender responsive budgeting, laws against domestic violence and microfinance are shaped by power relations between men and women in a setting of elite dominance. In the Timor-Leste case specifically, the political economy of kinship—as manifested in brideprice or traditional dispute resolution—has been as crucial to class formation as it has in perpetuating gender injustices.

Previously, Melissa has worked for the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) on Asia-Pacific development, and for Women Against Violence Europe (WAVE) on European Union programs to protect women from severe intimate partner violence.