Profile image for Samantha Edwards-Vandenhoek

Dr Samantha Edwards-Vandenhoek

Senior Lecturer, Communication Design & Photomedia
Doctor of Philosophy, University of Western Sydney, Australia


Dr Samantha Edwards-Vandenhoek is a multi-award-winning community-based design researcher, digital media artist and educator. Partnering with art centres, museums and schools, Samantha’s research seeks to advance the role of place-based design, media and filmmaking practices in remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community development; fostering social well-being, knowledge transfer, intercultural collaboration and youth entrepreneurship. Samantha holds a BA (Hons) in Aboriginal Prehistory and a PhD in Media and Communication Studies. In 2019, she was the co-recipient of the highly prestigious International Good Design Award for Social Impact for ‘Our Journey’, an animated film made with the Melbourne Indigenous Transition School and Australia Chamber Orchestra. Funded by the Australian Government and developed in partnership with Indigenous designers, artists and community organisations, Samantha coordinates Marngo Designing Futures, an aspiration initiative that connects Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people with University through the world of culture-centred design practices and digital storytelling technologies - In 2017, the program was awarded the FHAD Research Impact Award  Recognised for her sustained contributions to education, engaged research and reconciliation Samantha has been awarded the 2011 Vice Chancellor's Award for Teaching Excellence, 2016 Vice Chancellor’s Award for Community Engagement and 2018 Vice Chancellor's Team Award for Reconciliation.

Research interests

Street Art and Graffiti; Documentary Photography; visual communication; social design; digital mapping; public art; indigenous studies; inclusive design

Fields of Research

  • Design Practice And Management - 120300
  • Visual Arts And Crafts - 190500
  • Aboriginal And Torres Strait Islander Information And Knowledge Systems - 080601


Also published as: Edwards-Vandenhoek, Samantha; Edwards-Vandenhoek, S.
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