Professor of Gender, Work and Employment Relations, University of Sydney
Professor Rae Cooper, AO is Professor of Gender, Work and Employment Relations. She is based in the Discipline of Work and Organisational Studies (WOS) at the University of Sydney Business School. She is Director of the Gender Equality in Working Life (GEWL) Research Initiative, a member of the Executive Committee of the International Labor and Employment Relations Association and of the Australian Labour and Employment Relations Association.
In 2019 Professor Cooper was made an officer of the Order of Australia for her contributions to ‘higher education and to workplace policy and practice’.
Rae is a leading researcher on the world of work and is an Australian Research Council Future Fellow (2022-2025). She has a particular interest in gender and work, women’s careers and the future of work. She has received grants from the ARC, from state and federal governments and has worked in collaboration with leading organisations including the Australian Human Rights Commission, the Australian Institute of Company Directors and the Australian Council of Trade Unions.
She supervises several PhD, MPhil and Honours students working on projects spanning employment relations, gender and work and organisational policy. She is co-author of the leading text Employment Relations: Theory and Practice.
Rae uses her research expertise to contribute to public debates about work and careers and is a key Australian commentator on workplace matters in television, radio and print media. She regularly speaks to business and policy audiences about her research.
In addition to academic roles, Rae has been a non-Executive Director on several boards of public sector businesses and NGOs and has played a leadership role in organisations in the women’s policy advocating for women’s economic opportunity, lifting low paid women’s wages and building gender equity in working life.