Dr John James is passionate about enabling change and innovation, and helping others to learn and build their capability in this area.
John is an Adjunct Associate Professor with The University of Queensland. For his PhD, he investigated the factors that affect the adoption of Web 2.0 technologies. You can read a summary of his PhD thesis and even download the whole document if you’re keen.
After completing a degree in horticultural science, John’s first role was as an industry development officer. During that time he began to understand the purpose of extension, and realised that to enable change he needed to better understand people and how they approached decision making and change. So it was back to uni where John completed a Masters degree focusing on adult learning, psychology and business management. That eventually led him to working at the Rural Extension Centre, coordinating the delivery of post-graduate courses in agricultural extension where he was able to share his passion and expertise with students from across Australia and beyond.
He has also been heavily involved with the Australasia-Pacific Extension Network (APEN), the professional association for those involved with extension from Australia, New Zealand and beyond. Amongst other roles, he was APEN President for five years and he also established the APEN mentoring scheme. John was inducted as one of the first APEN Life Members in 2018. He was the convenor for the APEN international conference held in Tasmania in November 2023.
John enjoys using online collaboration tools to complement face-to-face communication. He pioneered the use of webinars in agriculture to connect with a geographically distributed audience. One of John’s career highlights was launching the Enabling change and innovation webinar series back in 2012. He provides consulting services around designing extension projects for impact, facilitating high impact events, and monitoring and evaluation of extension projects.