Dr Lachlan MacDowall is the Coordinator of Graduate Studies and Research at the Centre for Cultural Partnerships in the Faculty of the VCA and MCM, University of Melbourne. Lachlan’s academic research examines the theory and aesthetics of community-based art, arts-based research methods and cultural politics. He is currently Chief Investigator in the ARC-funded project Towards an integrated evaluation framework for intrinsic and instrumental benefits of community-based arts. The project, which is a partnership between the Australia Council for the Arts and the University of Melbourne, addresses the increasing alignment of community-based arts initiatives with specific government public policy agendas, including community development, wellbeing, urban development/renewal, racial and cultural harmony, youth alienation and juvenile justice. Lachlan has a PhD in Cultural Studies from the University of Melbourne and has taught in its Community Cultural Development program since its inception in 2005.