Kenneth Yates

Postgraduate Research

Research Area: Viral Hepatitis, Injecting Drug Use & Harm Reduction

Research Topic: Needle and syringe program clients, staff, and services in Western Sydney
Supervisors: A/Prof Limin Mao, Prof Carla Treloar, Dr Suzanne Fraser

Kenneth gained a BA(Hons) Media&Communications from UNSW and an MPASR from Macquarie University and commenced his PhD at CSRH in 2011. His current research centers around needle and syringe programs (NSPs) in Western Sydney. His research interests use theoretical concepts, drawn from notions of assemblage and Actor-Network Theory, to analyse the intersections between service provision, social and political context, the production of health and the emergence of service provider and service user identities.

Research summary

This thesis investigates needle syringe program (NSP) clients, staff, and services in Western Sydney. The work explores how marginalised NSP clients access services; how NSP staff and NSP client interactions can enact demarginalisation; and the ways in which relationships between NSP staff and other health workers can affect both NSP staff and NSP clients. Using concepts drawn from assemblage theory and science and technology studies (STS), the analysis draws on semi-structured, in-depth interviews with NSP clients and NSP staff, conducted across various sites in Western Sydney in 2012 and 2013.


Journal articles

Treloar, C., McLeod, R., Yates, K., & Mao, L. (2014). What’s the cost of finding the right fit? The cost of conducting NSP business in a range of modalities. Contemporary Drug Problems

Conference presentations

Yates, K. (2013, December). The artist's instruments: consuming danger, producing harm reduction. Paper presented at Dangerous Consumptions 11,. University of Western Sydney. 

Yates, K. (2013, August). What can the concepts of intra-action and cultural prosthesis contribute to research in the ?eld of injecting drug use? Contemporary Drug Problems. Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark. August 2013

Objects - in - use, thing - power materialism, and prosthetic identity. Materialities: Economies, Empiricism & Things - Cultural Studies Association of Australasia Annual Conference 2012. University of Sydney. December 2012

“I Can’t Say Social Science Sounds Much Like Real Science”: Disconnections and Scientism (or How to Stop Apologising for your Arts degree and Start Living). DIS/CONNECTIONS: Inaugural FASS Postgraduate Conference 2012. University of New South Wales. November 2012


Scumbags, enablers, and coffee: some realities of NSP service provision in Western Sydney. Access to health and social care for members of affected communities: Rights and realities. Australian Human Rights Centre December 2013

Oral presentations

“NSP Delivery Modes and Client Profiles in Greater Western Sydney” presented at Building Networks in Addiction Studies, The University of New South Wales, Sydney, 8 July 2011

“Injection and Abjection” presented at Contact: Borders, Limits and Thresholds, The University of New South Wales, Sydney, 9-10 September 2011

“Consumption, Addiction and Representation” presented at The 9th Dangerous Consumptions Colloquium, The Kirby Institute, The University of New South Wales, Sydney, 24-25 November 2011

“Articulating Bodies: Addiction and Representation” presented at 'silence&articulation': the 12th Social Research Conference on HIV, Hepatitis and Related Diseases (HHARD), National Centre in HIV Social Research, The University of New South Wales, Sydney, 12-13 April 2012