Senate | Members elected from and by the academic staff

Associate Professor Anne Surma

Anne Surma

Anne is an Associate Professor in the English and Creative Arts program, in the School of Arts.

Anne was awarded a Bachelor of Arts (First Class Honours) in English Language and Literature at the University of Reading, UK (1982), a Postgraduate Certificate of Education (1984), also at Reading, a Master of Arts in English Literature from the University of Warwick in 1986, and a PhD on the work of feminist writer, journalist and novelist Rebecca West, in 1991, also from Warwick.

Anne's periods of postgraduate study were interspersed with two years of teaching English as a foreign language in Greece. She also trained and worked as a production editor for the British Council, a global cultural organisation with headquarters in London, where she learned how to manage large arts and education-based projects. She also learned the skills of writing and editing across a range of fields and genres.

Emigrating to Australia in the early 1990s, Anne worked as a casual tutor in the English program at Murdoch University, before moving into the private sector to work for a large engineering company as in-house editor. Anne has also worked in private industry on a freelance basis as an editor, writer, writing facilitator and consultant, advising on organisational communications. For two years Anne was president of the Society of Editors (WA), has represented the state society at a national level, and holds the honorary title of Distinguished Editor, conferred by the national association, the Institute of Professional Editors.

Employed in a continuing teaching and research position at Murdoch from 2000, Anne teaches in the areas of literary studies and professional writing. She supervises several doctoral students in creative, critical and literary projects. Anne’s own research explores the imaginative and ethical uses of rhetoric in public and professional communications, an interest reflected in her journal articles and chapters in edited collections, as well as in her two sole-authored books, Public and professional writing: Ethics, imagination and rhetoric (Palgrave Macmillan 2005), and Imagining the cosmopolitan in public and professional writing (Palgrave Macmillan 2013). She is an editorial board member of the international journals, Journal of Communication Management, Public Relations Inquiry, TEXT and PRism. During her tenure at Murdoch, Anne has been a committed member of the university community, active on a number of school- and university-based committees and working parties, including Academic Council and the Murdoch University Curriculum Commission.