Melissa Crouch's research contributes to the fields of law and society; comparative constitutional law; and law and religion. Melissa is Chief Investigator on an Australian Research Council Discovery Project on "Constitutional Change in Authoritarian Regimes" (2018-2021). This study builds on two of her previous major research projects on constitutionalism: her doctoral research. on courts and religion in Indonesia, and her postdoctoral research on constitutionalism and the courts in Myanmar and Southeast Asia more broadly. Melissa established and runs the Southeast Asia Law & Policy Forum.
Melissa is the author of The Constitution of Myanmar (2019) (shortlisted for the Australian Legal Research Awards inaugural book award; see podcast by the New Books Network here) and Law and Religion in Indonesia: Conflict and the Courts in West Java (2014). She has published in a range of peer-reviewed journals including Law & Society Review, Law & Social Inquiry, Oxford Journal of Legal Studies and International Journal of Constitutional Law. She is the editor of several volumes, including Constitutional Democracy in Indonesia (2022) and Women and the Judiciary in the Asia-Pacific (CUP 2021). In 2022, she won the Podgorecki Prize for outstanding scholarship of an early career socio-legal scholar, awarded by the Research Committee on the Sociology of Law, International Sociological Association. She has also been awarded the Endeavour Australia Research Fellowship; the University of Indonesia Visiting Fellowship; and the University of Melbourne Kathleen Fitzpatrick Visiting Fellowship.
Melissa has worked with local and international organisations with a focus on constitutional and administrative law and legal education in Asia. She is the Vice-President of the Asian Studies Association of Australia (ASAA), the peak academic body for Asian studies in Australia. She is also co-director with Theunis Roux of the project on Constitutionalism in the Global South.