Dr Lindy Orthia

Senior Lecturer
BSc (Hons), GCertHist, PhD, SFHEA

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Lindy is an Honorary Senior Lecturer at the School of Sociology, within the Research School of Social Sciences in the ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences.

From 2007 until early 2021 she was an academic in science communication at the Centre for the Public Awareness of Science within the ANU College of Science, at Senior Lecturer level from 2015.

Lindy completed a Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences at La Trobe University then came to ANU to undertake honours in plant systematics, jointly with the Australian National Herbarium, CSIRO. She commenced a PhD in plant systematics but soon transferred to a PhD in science communication in 2005, graduating in 2010. Recognising much of her work took a historical approach, she undertook a Graduate Certificate in History from 2013-15. Prior to studying science, Lindy was an activist who spent much of her time researching, writing and agitating in regard to diverse political issues, working in student representative and community organisations.

Professional Awards and Honours

  • 2020 Winner: College of Science Dean's Commendation for Excellence in Education for Programs that Enhance Learning (Team)
  • 2014 recognised as Senior Fellow, Higher Education Academy
  • 2013 Winner: Vice-Chancellor's Award for Teaching Excellence
  • 2013 Winner: ANU Commendation for Outstanding Contribution to Student Learning
  • 2012 Winner: Colleges of Science Award for Teaching Excellence
  • 2009 Winner: ANU ResearchFest Award for Excellence in Tutoring or Demonstrating


Research interests

Lindy's current research interests are:

  • the politics of knowledge, in particular the rhetorical power of Western science compared to the world's many other systems of science and knowledge
  • intersections of science and science communication with sociopolitical categories such as race, gender, sexual orientation, class and disability
  • representations of science in popular fiction and public responses to them
  • histories of science communication and the uses of history in public communication about science.

For more current and complete information on Lindy's publications and bio, including a more up to date publications list, go to lindyorthia.com.

Research projects

Lindy is currently editing a book with Dr Tara Roberson (UQ) entitled Queering Science Communication: Representations, Theory and Practice.

She is also working on other projects related to her research interests, details to be updated as projects are formalised.



  • Duan, RJ, Walker, GJ & Orthia, LA 2021, 'Interest, emotions, relevance: viewing science centre interactive exhibit design through the lens of situational interest', International Journal of Science Education. Part B: Communication and Public Engagement, 11(3): 191-209.
  • Orthia, LA 2021, 'Components of effective communication', in Merryn McKinnon (ed.), Health Promotion: A Practical Guide to Effective Communication, Cambridge University Press, United Kingdom, pp. 126-146.
  • Orthia LA, McKinnon M, Viana JN & Walker GJ 2021, 'Reorienting science communication towards communities', Journal of Science Communication, 20(3): A12. DOI: 10.22323/2.20030212
  • Orthia, LA & Harmes, MK 2021, 'Introduction to Doctor Who and science', in Marcus K. Harmes and Lindy A. Orthia (ed.), Doctor Who and Science, McFarland & Co., USA, pp. 3-17.
  • Orthia, LA & Harmes, MK 2021, 'Concluding remarks: Science in Twenties Doctor Who', in Marcus K. Harmes and Lindy A. Orthia (ed.), Doctor Who and Science, McFarland & Co., USA, pp. 221-225.
  • Orthia, LA & de Kauwe V 2021, 'Candyfloss, Lego and Hope: What sort of scientist is Jodie Whittaker's Doctor?', in Marcus K. Harmes and Lindy A. Orthia (ed.), Doctor Who and Science, McFarland & Co., USA, pp. 110-126.
  • Finlay, SM, Raman, S, Rasekoala, E, Mignan, V, Dawson E, Neeley L & Orthia LA 2021, 'From the margins to the mainstream: deconstructing science communication as a white, Western paradigm', Journal of Science Communication, 20(01): C02. DOI: 10.22323/2.20010302
  • Roberson T & Orthia, LA 2021, 'Queer world-making: a need for integrated intersectionality in science communication', Journal of Science Communication, 20(01): C05. DOI: 10.22323/2.20010305
  • Orthia, LA 2020, 'Strategies for including communication of non-Western and indigenous knowledges in science communication histories', Journal of Science Communication, vol. 19, no. 2, A02.
  • Orthia, LA 2019, 'How does science fiction television shape fans' relationships to science? Results from a survey of 575 Doctor Who viewers', Journal of Science Communication, 18(04): A08.
  • de Kauwe, V & Orthia, LA 2018, 'Knowledge, power and the ethics illusion: Explaining diverse viewer interpretations of the politics in classic era Doctor Who', The Journal of Popular Television, vol. 60, no. 2, pp. 151-165.
  • McKinnon, M & Orthia, LA 2017, 'Vaccination communication strategies: What have we learned, and lost, in 200 years?', Journal of Science Communication, vol. 16, no. 3, A08.
  • Orthia, LA 2016, 'Democratizing science in the eighteenth century: Resonances between condorcet's Sketch (1795) and twenty-first century science communication', Journal of Science Communication, vol. 15, no. 4, pp. 1-11.
  • Orthia, LA 2016, ''Laudably Communicating to the World': Science in Sydney's Public Culture, 1788-1821', Historical Records of Australian Science, vol. 27, no. 1, pp. 1-12. doi: 10.1071/HR15018.
  • Orthia, LA 2016, 'What's Wrong with Talking About the Scientific Revolution? Applying Lessons from History of Science to Applied Fields of Science Studies', Minerva: A review of science, learning and policy , 54(3), 353-373. doi:10.1007/s11024-016-9299-4.
  • Orthia, LA & Morgain, R 2016, 'The Gendered Culture of Scientific Competence: A Study of Scientist Characters in Doctor Who 1963-2013', Sex Roles, 75(3), 79-94. doi: 10.1007/s11199-016-0597-y
  • Li, R & Orthia, LA 2016, 'Communicating the Nature of Science Through The Big Bang Theory: Evidence from a Focus Group Study.', International Journal of Science Education Part B, 6(2), 115-136.
  • Donkers, M & Orthia, LA 2016, 'Popular Theatre for Science Engagement: Audience Engagement with Human Cloning Following a Production of Caryl Churchill's A Number', International Journal of Science Education Part B, 6(1), 23-45, DOI:10.1080/21548455.2014.947349.
  • Dobos, AR, Orthia, LA & Lamberts, R 2015, 'Does a picture tell a thousand words? The uses of digitally produced, multimodal pictures for communicating information about Alzheimer's disease', Public Understanding of Science, 24(6), 712-730, DOI:10.1177/0963662514533623.
  • McKinnon, M, Orthia, LA, Grant, WJ & Lamberts, R 2014, 'Real-world assessment as an integral component of an undergraduate science communication program', International Journal of Innovation in Science and Mathematics Education, vol. 22, no. 5, pp. 1-13.
  • Orthia, LA 2013, 'Negotiating Public Resistance to Engagement in Science and Technology', in John K Gilbert and Susan Stocklmayer (eds.), Communication and engagement with Science and Technology. Issues and Dilemmas, Routledge Taylor & Francis Group, New York and Abingdon, pp. 74-90.
  • Orthia, L (ed.) 2013, Doctor Who and Race, Intellect Ltd, Bristol and Chicago.
  • Orthia, LA 2013, 'Savages, science, stagism and the naturalized ascendancy of the Not-We in Doctor Who', in Lindy Orthia (ed.), Doctor Who and Race, Intellect Ltd, United Kingdom and United States, pp. 271-287.
  • Orthia, L 2013, 'Introduction', in Lindy Orthia (ed.), Doctor Who and Race, Intellect Ltd, Bristol and Chicago, pp. 3-11.
  • Orthia, L 2013, 'Conclusion', in Lindy Orthia (ed.), Doctor Who and Race, Intellect Ltd, Bristol and Chicago, pp. 291-296.
  • Li, R & Orthia, LA 2013, 'Are people inspired by The Big Bang Theory to find out more about Science? Results from focus group-based audience research', 4th Annual Popular Culture Association of Australia and New Zealand (PopCAANZ), Popular Culture Association of Australia and New Zealand (PopCAANZ), Sydney, pp. 248-258.
  • Shadbolt, NA, Parker, MA & Orthia, LA 2013, 'Communicating endometriosis with young women to decrease diagnosis time', Health Promotion Journal of Australia, vol. 24, no. 2, pp. 151-154.
  • Orthia L.A., Dobos A.R., Guy T., Kan S.Z., Keys S.E., Nekvapil S. & Ngu D.H.Y. 2012, How do people think about the science they encounter in fiction? Science students investigate using The Simpsons. International Journal of Science Education Part B 2: 149-174.
  • Orthia, L 2012, 'Science Fiction', in R. Gunstone (ed.), Encyclopedia of Science Fiction, Springer Verlag, Berlin Heidelberg.
  • Orthia, LA 2011, '"Paradise is a little too green for me": Discourses of environmental disaster in Doctor Who 1963-2010', Colloquy, vol. 21, pp. 56 - 80.
  • Orthia, LA 2011, 'Antirationalist critique or fifth column of scientism? challenges from Doctor Who to the mad scientist trope', Public Understanding of Science, vol. 20, no. 4, pp. 525-542.
  • Orthia, LA 2010, '"Sociopathetic Abscess" or "Yawning Chasm"? The Absent Postcolonial Transition in Doctor Who', Journal of Commonwealth Literature, vol. 45, no. 2, pp. 207-225.
  • Rifkin, W, Longnecker, N, Leach, J, Davis, L & Orthia, L 2010, 'Students Publishing in New Media: Eight Hypotheses - a House of Cards?', International Journal of Innovation in Science and Mathematics Education (formerly CAL-laborate International), vol. 18, no. 1, pp. 43-54.
  • Orthia, LA 2010, Enlightenment was the choice: Doctor Who and the Democratisation of Science, PhD Thesis, 19/04/2010.
  • Rifkin, W, Longnecker, N, Leach, J, Davis, L & Orthia, L 2009, 'Motivate Students by having them publish in new media: An invitation to science lecturers to share and test', National UniServe Science Conference 2009, ed. Conference Program Committee, UniServe Science, Sydney Australia, pp. 105-111.
  • Wilkins, CF, Orthia, LA & Crisp, MD 2009, 'A new species of Pultenaea (Mirbelieae: Fabaceae) from Kundip, Western Australia', Nuytsia, vol. 19, no. 1, pp. 191-196.
  • Orthia, LA 2006, 'Boundedness, Relationality and Evolution in Biological Systems', Annual Conference of the Society for Literature, Science and Art 2006 New York.
  • Orthia, LA, Cook, LG & Crisp, MD 2005, 'Generic delimitation and phylogenetic uncertainty: an example from a group that has undergone an explosive radiation', Australian Systematic Botany, vol. 18, pp. 41-47.
  • Orthia, LA, Crisp, MD, Cook, LG & de Kok, RPJ 2005, 'Bush peas: a rapid radiation with no support for monophyly of Pultenaea (Fabaceae: Mirbelieae)', Australian Systematic Botany, vol. 18, pp. 133-147.
  • Orthia, LA, de Kok, RPJ & Crisp, MD 2005, 'A revision of Pultenaea (Fabaceae: Mirbelieae). 4. Species occurring in Western Australia', Australian Systematic Botany, vol. 18, pp. 149-206.
  • Bickford, SA, Laffan, SW, de Kok, RPJ & Orthia, LA 2004, 'Spatial analysis of taxonomic and genetic patterns and their potential for understanding evolutionary histories', Journal of Biogeography, vol. 31, pp. 1715-1733.
  • Orthia, LA, Garrick, RC & James, EA 2003, 'Genetic comparison between Victorian and Tasmanian populations of Prasophyllum correctum D.L. Jones (Orchidaceae) suggests separate species', Muelleria, vol. 18, pp. 79-87.
  • Garrick, RC, Orthia, LA & James, EA 2003, 'Genetic comparison of populations of the rare Gorae Leek Orchid, Prasophyllum diversiflorum Nicholls (Orchidaceae)', Muelleria, vol. 18, pp. 89-97.