BiographyDr Deborah Cummins is the Director of Bridging Peoples. Before then she worked as Research, Policy and Governance Specialist at The Asia Foundation. She has worked as a consultant and trainer on local governance issues in Timor-Leste, and a visiting lecturer and researcher at the Department of Community Development at the National University of Timor-Leste (UNTL). In Australia, she has been a lecturer in Development Studies and course coordinator in Public Policy at the University of Newcastle and the University of New South Wales, and also worked for a number of years for Reconciliation Australia, an NGO promoting Indigenous reconciliation in Australia. She has published widely on various issues of local-level governance in Timor-Leste, including the interaction of customary and state-based governance, democratisation, women's leadership and community development.
Areas of Research / Professional Expertise
Cross-cultural community development in postcolonial communities, community-sensitive approaches to development, women's leadership, democratisation, human rights.
Published: Mar 03, 2013 by The Fletcher Forum of World Affairs
Authors: Deborah Cummins
Subjects: Asian Studies
This article examines the applicability of classic institutional theory in the postcolonial, community context. Drawing on community-based research conducted over a number of years in Timor-Leste, the author argues that institutional theory needs to be re-imagined in order to properly account for co-existing customary and state-based institutions, laws and worldviews.