Social Sciences

Social Sciences

Our current PhD Scholars

Cassandra Harry


Casandra Harry is an Erasmus Mundus Scholar pursing a Ph.D. in Sociology at the University of the South Pacific, Fiji. She holds a M.Sc. in Global, and a B.Sc. (Hons), specialising in International Relations from the University of the West Indies, St Augustine. Her research interests are multidisciplinary in scope spanning Sociology, Criminology, International Relations and Public Policy. Her thesis title is “Post-Conflict Institution Building Interventions: A study of stakeholder perceptions of the contributions of Regional Assistance Mission to the Solomon Islands (RAMSI) to Police reform in the Solomon Islands.” This phenomenological study aims to explore the perceptions of RSIPF officers on institutional change, understand the factors that account for these views and uncover how these perceptions changed having experienced institutional reform.

Zena Sherani


Zena Sherani is a part-time Ph.D. candidate in Sociology. In 2009 she graduated with a Master of Arts in Sociology. Zena’s passion/interest involves examining women and youth-related issues in the Pacific, Asia Pacific migration, corruption, civic education and dialogue and peacebuilding initiatives. Zena is currently a Coordinator-Sociology at Pacific TAFE USP. She is a recipient of the 2019 Faculty Teaching Excellence award at Pacific TAFE. Her research is titled ‘Culture, identity and adaptation amongst young Indo-Fijian adults in New Zealand’. The proposed research will explore the dynamic ways in which diasporic Indo-Fijian youths’ identities are reconstituted, reproduced and negotiated as they adapt to the lifestyle in New Zealand.

Joseph I. Cruz


Joseph I. Cruz is a native to Guam whose professional career spans 33 years serving in the US Marine Corps, the US Army and eventually becoming the Chief of Police in the Guam Police Department. He holds BS in Criminal Justice and a MPA from the University of Guam. His thesis is tentatively titled “Assessing the Guam Police Department’s Commitment to the Mandaña Community-Oriented Policing Strategy”.

Tima Tuvuki


Tima is a PhD candidate in Psychology and is also working as a teaching assistant in the Oceania Centre for Arts, Culture and Pacific Studies. Her research focuses on families who were severely affected in Koro Island, Fiji by TC Winston. This qualitative study employs Talanoa methodology to gain an in-depth understanding of the iTaukei’s psychological experiences.  The study explores coping strategies and resilience mechanisms displayed by children within the family context in 3 villages in Koro Island, Fiji.   

Anawaite Matadradra


Ana is a PhD History candidate and a Teaching Assistant with the School of Social Science. She holds a Bachelors of Arts degree in History & Politics and a Master of Arts in Development Studies (USP). Her current research thesis is "A Comparative Study of a Minority Community: The Case of Melanesian Communities in Fiji and Samoa (1980-2000). It is an extension of her ongoing interest in conducting historical research on the marginalized, disadvantaged and minorities in society. She hopes to document the interesting phenomenon of the labour trade migration and cultural adaption by utilizing case studies from Melanesian communities in Fiji and Samoa.

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Page updated: Monday, January 25, 2021
Social Sciences
School of Law and Social Science
The University of the South Pacific
Laucala Campus
Tel: (+679) 323 1000
Fax: (+679) 323 1506