Our Team

  • Dr Tanya RichesResearch Fellow

    Tanya Riches is an honourary research fellow of the Edward Cadbury Centre, The University of Birmingham and Alphacrucis College. Her PhD research with Aboriginal Pentecostals was published in a 2019 monograph with Brill entitled Worship and Social Engagement in Urban Aboriginal-led Australian Pentecostal Congregations. It investigated the links between urban Aboriginal-led Pentecostal Christian congregations’ worship practices and social justice initiatives. She won the David Allan Hubbard Award from Fuller Theological Seminary for this study. Her MPhil at the Australian Catholic University explores the theological, musicological and business practices of Hillsong music. The co-edited volume entitled The Hillsong Movement Examined: You Call Me Out Upon the Waters (2017) intentionally drew together insider and outsider scholars to examine various aspects of Hillsong Church via ethnographic method. She has edited several special edition journals and authored or co-authored over ten articles and four chapters in scholarly volumes. Until 2022, Dr Tanya Riches was Senior Lecturer and MTh program coordinator at Hillsong College, a third-party provider of Alphacrucis College. Before that, she worked at the Centre for Disability Studies, The University of Sydney.

    Areas of expertise: 1. Australian Pentecostalism 2. Contemporary Worship/Liturgy 3. Lived religious experience 4. Pentecostal Theology 

  • Rev Prof Philip HughesSenior Research Fellow

    Philip has spent most of his professional life researching the sociology of religion. He has a particular interest in the spiritual and religious dimensions of culture and their expression in organisations. Not only was Philip the founding Director of the CRA, being for 31 years its Senior Research Officer, but also worked for 11 years at Edith Cowan University. Philip is also an Honorary Research Fellow with the University of Divinity and the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference National Centre for Pastoral Research. He currently holds a Professorial-level position with Alphacrucis College, specialising in research methods and post-graduate supervision. Impressively, Philip has written more than 60 books and hundreds of peer-reviewed articles.

    Areas of expertise: 1. Religion, society and culture.  2. Wellbeing, values and meaning-making.  3. Research methods.

  • Prof Ruth WebberSenior Research Fellow

    Ruth is an Honorary Professor at Australian Catholic University (ACU) and holds honorary appointments at the University of Divinity, the ACBC National Centre for Pastoral Research and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Ruth has degrees in sociology, psychology and education, and from 2004 until 2013 was the director of ACU’s Quality of Life and Social Justice Research Centre. Since formally retiring in 2014, she has undertaken private research for several non-profit welfare agencies.

    Areas of expertise: 1. Social justice, such as intellectual disability and social engagement.  2. Youth spirituality.  3. Sexual assault.  4. Natural disasters.