Bunty Avieson is a senior lecturer and research fellow at University of Sydney.
In 2008-9 she spent a year in the Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan, jointly funded by the United Nations and the Bhutan Observer newspaper, to teach journalists and editors, as well as to advise media stakeholders, as part of the country’s move to democracy. This provided the opportunity to undertake research for her PhD thesis, The Voice of the Dragon: Emerging media in the new democracy of Bhutan, which was awarded in 2014 and received the Macquarie Vice Chancellor’s Commendation for excellence. During the year-long posting in Bhutan she acted as a consultant to Reporters Without Borders, Asia-Pacific desk, and presented her research findings to United Nations representatives as well as Bhutan’s government and media stakeholders.
Before moving into academia, Avieson worked as a journalist and author in Britain, Australia and Asia and in the 1990s, was editor of two of Australia's top selling weekly magazines, Woman's Day and New Idea. She has published three novels, a novella and two memoirs, which have been variously translated into Japanese, German and Thai. She has been awarded two Ned Kelly Crime Writing Awards.
She continues to research the development of media in Bhutan, while also pursuing research interests in literary journalism (creative non-fiction) and Wikipedia as a site for knowledge construction and cultural resilience. She is Vice President of Wikimedia Australia and a member of WikiProject Bhutan. In 2019 she received a Discovery Early Career Research Award to fund the Bhutan-Australia Wiki Project.
Avieson lives in Sydney's inner west with her partner Mal Watson, Producer of Khyentse Norbu's films The Cup and Travellers & Magicians, their daughter Kathryn, and two black cats.