Alex Edney-Browne

Alex Edney-Browne was awarded her PhD in International Relations at The University of Melbourne in 2020, which examined the use of drone technology in war and the effects of U.S. drone surveillance and attacks on people's physical, emotional and psychosocial wellbeing in rural Afghanistan and among U.S. Air Force veterans. She undertook fieldwork interviews in Afghanistan, refugee camps in Greece and the United States for this research. Her broader expertise is in war and security, particularly as assessed from feminist and postcolonial perspectives. Prior to her PhD, Alex was a Research Assistant on two projects assessing and analysing the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq; ‘Counterinsurgency and Civilian Casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan’ and ‘He Toki Huna: New Zealand in Afghanistan’ – both at The University of Auckland. Alex has published in The LA Times, ABC, The Conversation and New Matilda, among others, and her research has also featured in The Saturday Paper and the ABC's podcast "Science Friction". She has spoken at many public events, including the Melbourne International Film Festival (MIFF).

Academia profile


The Drone Interface: A Relational Study of U.S. Drone Violence in Afghanistan

Publications (academic journals)

Edney-Browne, Alex. 'The Psycho-Social Effects of Drone Violence: Social Isolation, Self-Objectification and De-Politicisation'. Political Psychology 40.6 (2019): 1341–356.

Edney-Browne, Alex. ‘Embodiment and Affect in a Digital Age: Understanding Mental Illness in Military Drone Personnel’. Krisis: Journal for Contemporary Philosophy 1 (2017): 18‒32.

Edney-Browne, Alex. ‘The Act of Killing: Investigative Strategies for a “Post-political” Age’. Pacific Journalism Review 21.2 (2015): 44–62.


Edney-Browne, Alex. Drone Warfare, Race, Gender, and the Environment, at UQ IR Theory Forum, University of Queensland, 2019.

Edney-Browne, Alex. The Psycho-Cultural Harms of Drone Violence, at Gender, (In)security and Temporalities of Violence, University of Sydney, 2019.

Edney-Browne, Alex. Living Under Drones in Afghanistan, at Governing Drone Violence: Concepts, Moralities and Rules, University of Southampton, UK, 2019.

Edney-Browne, Alex. Dismantling the Techno-Fetish: Drones as a Continuation of Colonial Bombardment, at ISA Annual Convention, Toronto, 2019.

Edney-Browne, Alex. Fieldwork-informed Research into National Security Technologies: Difficult yet Crucial for Critical IR?, at ISA Annual Convention, Toronto, 2019.  

Edney-Browne, Alex. 'Drones: Waging War From a Distance', a public talk at Richmond Library, Richmond (Melbourne), 20 September 2018.

Edney-Browne, Alex. 'The Dystopian Present of Drone Warfare, and Possibilities for Resistance', 'Dystopic Futures and Utopian Possibilities' Identity Research Network interdisciplinary symposium, Swinburne University, Melbourne, 5 May 2018. 

Edney-Browne, Alex. 'The Lived Experiences of High-Technology War', 'Power of Rules and Rule of Power' International Studies Association's 59th Annual Convention, San Francisco, USA, 6 April 2018. 

Edney-Browne, Alex. 'Research in "Dangerous" and "Hostile" Places: Are Anti-Colonial Methods Possible in Conflict Zones?', 'Ethnography in Conflict Areas' Ethnoforum, The University of Melbourne, 9 March 2018. 

Edney-Browne, Alex. 'Targeting the Emotions: Living Under Drone Surveillance and Drone Attack in Afghanistan', 'Ethics and War: Thinking the Practice and Politics of Killing' symposium, The University of Auckland, NZ, 13 October 2017.

Edney-Browne, Alex. 'Targeting the Emotions: the Socio-Psychological Effects of Drone Warfare'. 'The Politics of International Studies in an Age of Crises' 11th Pan-European Conference on International Relations, Barcelona, Spain, 15 September 2017.

Edney-Browne, Alex. '(Inter)facing the "Enemy": Affective Interactions in Drone Warfare'. 'The Politics of International Studies in an Age of Crises' 11th Pan-European Conference on International Relations, Barcelona, Spain, 14 September 2017.

Edney-Browne, Alex. ‘Drone Warfare, and the Militarisation of Australian Higher Education’. Invited speaker at ‘Independent and Peaceful Australia Network’ conference, Melbourne, 9 September 2017.

Edney-Browne, Alex. ‘Living Under Drone Attack and Drone Surveillance’, Bargoonga Nganjin North Fitzroy Library, Melbourne, 6 September 2017.

Edney-Browne, Alex. 'The Drone Interface: Locating the "Human" in Digital Warfare'. 'Technicity, Temporality, Embodiment' 10th International Somatechnics Conference, Byron Bay, Australia, 2 December 2016.

Edney-Browne, Alex. ‘Law’s Mirage: Debating Australia’s Military Drones’. Invited speaker at ‘Regulating Robots: Law, Ethics and Public Policy’ symposium, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, 7 October 2016.

Edney-Browne, Alex. ‘Australia and Debating the Drone War’. Invited speaker at ‘Independent and Peaceful Australia Network’ conference, Alice Springs, 1 October 2016.

Edney-Browne, Alex, Mirella Dotti, Denny Oetomo, Mike Arnold and Ian Barns. ‘Science Week at the Cathedral: Animals, Humans, Robots’, St Paul’s Cathedral, Melbourne, 17 August 2016.

Edney-Browne, Alex, Lisa Ling and Cian Westmoreland. ‘Talking Pictures – National Bird: In Conversation’. Melbourne International Film Festival, Melbourne, 30 July 2016.

Edney-Browne, Alex, Mark Andrejevic, Richard Tanter, Lisa Ling and Cian Westmoreland. ‘The Human Cost of Drones’. School of Culture and Communication ‘In Conversation’ panel, The University of Melbourne, 27 July 2016.

Edney-Browne, Alex, Peter Hayes, Shahzad Akbar, Lisa Ling and Cian Westmoreland. ‘Drones: Human Hunting’. Invited panel, Splendour in the Grass festival, Byron Bay, 23 July 2016.

Online media

Edney-Browne, Alex, and Tilman Ruff. 'Partnerships Between Universities and Arms Manufacturers Raise Thorny Ethical Questions'. The Conversation, 16 March 2018.

Edney-Browne, Alex, Natasha Mitchell and Rachel Ang (illustrator). ‘What it's Really Like to Live with Drone Warfare’. ABC, Radio National, 22 August 2017.

Edney-Browne, Alex and Lisa Ling. 'Don't Believe the Dangerous Myths of "Drone Warrior"'. Los Angeles Times, 16 July 2017.

Edney-Browne, Alex. '"I Saw Pieces of Bodies": Afghan Civilians Describe Terrorisation by US Drones'Truthout, 1 July 2017.

Dreyfus, Suelette and Alex Edney-Browne. ‘Drone Warfare: Why the Whole Truth Matters’. Pursuit, 26 July 2016.

Edney-Browne, Alex. ‘Like Drone Strikes, Eye in the Sky Is Much Less Accurate Than Claimed’. E-International Relations, 25 May 2016.

Edney-Browne Alex. ‘Imprecise, Automated, Deadly: Why Australia Shouldn't Buy into the Drone War’. New Matilda, 16 March 2016.