Leigh Robinson


PhD title: The highs and lows of the airport: volunteering in an intensely mobile space

My research interest lies within the volunteering community and the effect of infrastructure on volunteers. Of particular interest is the reason(s) that some volunteers continue to carry on in their volunteer roles post burnout. The population for my research is the many volunteers who work in Australia’s major airports.

The benefit of some 30 years of working with Australia’s airports as a major equipment supplier provides me with a unique insight into the working of an airport terminal and those employed and volunteering within it. As a Rotarian, I work intensely with and manage, a range of volunteers and volunteer roles in the community. In addition to Rotary experiences, while managing the former ‘Twilight Tournaments’ program of keeping young people off the streets through indoor sports activities, I observed many instances of burnout among the volunteers and some of them just kept coming back. I got to wonder why and eventually, it led to this research.

Current research projects

The Highs and Lows of the Airport: Volunteering in an Intensely Mobile Space
The geographic area of this research is of particular interest due to the absence of any previous research into volunteers in the aviation sector. In proceeding to my aim of establishing the why’s of post burnout continuation I will investigate the effect of the airport as a place and the environmental psychology of the airport terminal on the volunteers.