About Me

AB PhD Candidate, Faculty of Arts, Monash University

Email: alex@alexburns.net

Phone: +61 467 387 241



Grad Cert of Information Technology, Swinburne University (2008); Grad Cert of Business (Project Management), Swinburne University (2007); MA (Counter-Terrorism Studies), Monash University (2007); MSc (Strategic Foresight), Swinburne University (2005); BA (Cinema Studies, Politics, Philosophy), La Trobe University (2002).




My in-progress PhD at Australia’s Monash University develops a new conceptual theory of terrorist groups as strategic subcultures using case study and process tracing methods to examine Aum Shinrikyo and the Islamic State. I have published in Contemporary Security Policy, Media International Australia, Journal of Futures Studies, and Media/Culture journals. I have presented research findings to the International Studies Association, the Association of Internet Researchers, the Telecommunications Society of Australia, the East-West Center in Washington DC, Sensis, Telstra, Westpac, and other organisations. My H-index is 7 (Google Scholar).


My extensive research management experience includes Research Funding and Development Manager and Research Facilitator roles at Australia’s Victoria University (2008-16), Senior Quality & Planning Officer at Swinburne University for an Australian Universities Quality Agency audit (2007-08), and as senior researcher in the Smart Internet Technology Cooperative Research Centre (2004-07), where I coauthored the Smart Internet 2010 report (2005).


I edited and wrote for the Disinformation website (1998-2008). Other publications: 21CREVelationDesktop, MarketingInformation AgeArtbyte, Playboy.com’s ‘Digital Culture’ magazines, and La Trobe University’s Rabelais student newspaper (1994-2004).



Recent Publications


  • Alex Burns and Ben Eltham. ‘Australia’s Strategic Culture: Constraints and Opportunities in Security Policymaking.’ In Jeffrey S. Lantis (ed.). Strategic Cultures and Security Policies in the Asia-Pacific. New York: Routledge, 2015, 22-45.
  • Alex Burns and Ben Eltham. ‘Australia’s Strategic Culture: Constraints and Opportunities in Security Policymaking.’ 2014. Contemporary Security Policy 35(2): 187-210.
  • Alex Burns and Stephen McGrail. ‘Examining Possible Internet Futures.’ 2012. Journal of Futures Studies 16(4): 33-49.
  • Alex Burns, ‘Doubting the Global War on Terror.’ 2011. M/C Journal 14(1) (March).
  • Alex Burns and Ben Eltham. ‘Catastrophic Failure Theories and Disaster Journalism: Evaluating Media Explanations of Australia’s ‘Black Saturday’ Bushfires.’ 2010. Media International Australia 137 (November), 90-99. (Publisher accepted version.)
  • Alex Burns and Ben Eltham. ‘The Film Finance Corporation and Hollywood’s Race to the Bottom.’ 2010. Media International Australia 136 (August), 103-118. (Publisher accepted version.)


Notable Publications


Research Interests


  • Strategic Culture in terrorist groups
  • Policy Analysis
  • FinTech

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