PhD graduate scores top ANU Gender Institute prize

PhD graduate Ma Khin Mar Mar has returned from studies at Oxford University to receive an Excellence in Research award from the ANU Gender Institute.

Mar, who is continuing her studies at the International Gender Studies Centre, Oxford University, completed her PhD through the College of Asia and the Pacific's School of Culture, History and Language in 2012.

A 45-minute film she submitted with the PhD, Dreams of Dutiful Daughters, gives remarkable insights into the lives of nine young Burmese women seeking a better life in Thailand, only to meet with ominous consequences.

The work helped secure a fellowship at Oxford University, where Mar is further investigating issues of gender, education and leadership in Burma, with a view to modernising Burmese society.

She has now received an Excellence in Research award for her thesis from the ANU Gender Institute.

"We felt Mar's thesis was a really fine example of feminist scholarship, and a very courageous piece of scholarship," ANU Gender Institute convenor Dr Fiona Jenkins said.

Mar has won a number of other awards, including the Australia Day Unsung Hero award in 2008, and the ANU Asian Studies award in 2009.

The ANU Gender Institute encompasses academics and graduate students from across all seven ANU Colleges and provides a focus on activity on issues of gender and sexuality.