Professor Adam Shoemaker has extensive experience in the Australian University sector and is one of Australia's leading researchers in Indigenous literature and culture.  

He commenced as the Vice-Chancellor and President of Victoria University in December 2020 after four years as Vice-Chancellor of Southern Cross University.

Before these roles, Professor Shoemaker was a senior leader at a number of other Australian universities, including Academic Provost at Griffith University, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education) at Monash University and Dean of Arts at the Australian National University. 

He spent his formative years in a diverse range of fields, such as reviewer and columnist for The Australian, an ABC Canberra Radio programmer, serving as chair of the Brisbane Writers Festival in the mid-1990s and spending three years with the Delegation of the Commission of the European Committees.

Professor Shoemaker also had positions on the advisory board of Monash University Publishing and the Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority (VCAA), and Director of Open Universities Australia.  

He is currently a Universities Australia board member. 

Canadian by birth, Professor Shoemaker holds a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) from Queen's University and a PhD from the Australian National University.

Contact the Office of the Vice - Chancellor

Executive Coordinator
Niky Poposki
Phone: +61 3 9919 4011
Email: [email protected]

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Award-winning author


Professor Shoemaker is the author or editor of nine books focused on Indigenous Australian Literature and Culture, including:

  • Aboriginal Australians: First Nations of an Ancient Continent (2004)  

    Authors Professor Adam Shoemaker and Stephen Muecke trace the richly diverse and longstanding origins of Australia’s First Nations people through to the present day.

  • Black Words, White Page (2004)  

    This award-winning study – the first comprehensive treatment of the nature and significance of Indigenous Australian literature – was based upon Professor Shoemaker's doctoral research at The Australian National University and was first published by UQP in 1989.

  • A Sea Change: Australian Writing and Photography (Editor, 1998)  

    Commissioned by the Olympic Arts Festivals of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games, this anthology brought together 25 of Australia's finest writers and photographers to explore the transformation that took place two years before the Games.

  • Mudrooroo: A Critical Study (1993) 

    A study of all of Mudrooroo's (Colin Jackson's) books up to "The Kwinkan" - his poetry, criticism and unpublished novels.


  • Arrived in Australia as a Commonwealth Scholar 
  • Winner of the Walter McRae Russell Award 1990 – Association for the Study of Australian Literature  
  • Highly commended in the Human Rights Awards - Australian Human Rights Commission for Paperbark: A Collection of Black Australian Writings (1990) and Black Words, White Page (1989)

A thriving place to work and learn

Adam is passionate about educational policy, First Nations rights, literature and culture, digital enablement, social history, and the environment. 

I have always believed that education provides endless opportunities if done right.

Victoria University is taking this further by pushing boundaries to do things differently — from learning, teaching and research through to the way we work and connect with industry and community. We embolden people to shape their future and the world.

I am incredibly proud to be part of the VU community, where I witness my colleagues and students excelling, adapting and striving for daily brilliance.

Together, we have the bold aspiration to become the best applied dual sector university globally with a profound commitment to inclusivity and protecting country.