Photo credit: Sumit Lodhia
Sumit Lodhia is a Professor of Accounting at the University of South Australia. He holds a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts from the University of the South Pacific, and a PhD from The Australian National University.
Sumit’s research interests are centred in sustainability accounting and reporting. He has authored in excess of 70 articles published in prestigious refereed journals, a book and several research reports. Sumit is also the co-editor of Accounting Forum and a member of the Editorial Board of several international journals.
Sumit enjoys strong links with industry, enabling him to research the sustainability accounting practices of major Australian organisations, both public and private, and use his insights to inform his undergraduate and postgraduate coursework teaching, supervision of HDR students and mentoring of junior colleagues.
Here are Sumit’s responses to some questions that may interest you:
Which year did you obtain your PhD and how did your PhD experience at ANU prepare you for your career?
I was awarded my PhD in 2007 by what was then known as the ANU School of Accounting and Business Information Systems, but is now called the Research School of Accounting. My PhD served as a research apprenticeship, teaching me how to become a scholar. I was privileged to have great supervisors who have shaped my career.
Why did you choose to work in academia over industry?
I enjoy the flexibility and academic freedom provided by academia.
Could you list three pivotal career lessons you have learnt so far?
a. Never give up – a PhD has many ups and downs but, at the end of the day, you eventually succeed. That can be also applied to your career.
b. Develop a strong network of likeminded individuals who will be your life-long support system.
c. Respect everyone regardless of their status or achievements.
How do you discover new research ideas and develop your research network?
I have a strong network of sustainability accounting and reporting academics and have worked with a number of co-authors over time. I also keep up to date on the literature and research studies in my area and attend conferences and workshops to develop further research ideas.
What would be your advice to our current PhD candidates, who may be early in their candidature or close to completion, on their career preparation?
A PhD is a unique journey that can only be experienced once, so enjoy it, be positive, keep learning and, no matter what, never give up.
What are your tips for a successful academic job application and interview?
Your track record and experience counts, so make sure you articulate both in your CV. At the interview, make sure that your oral responses matches what is in your CV. Be confident but respectful, give detailed but precise responses, and make a strong impression without overdoing things.
Do you have any general words of wisdom for our HDR students or recent graduates?
Keep on learning, keep on fighting and never say no – whether it is in your PhD or your career.