School of Public Health and Social Work
The School delivers courses and research that respond to the demand for better public health services, the promotion of better health and wellbeing, the promotion of social justice and human rights, improved promotion, prevention and treatment of disease and illness and policy development to achieve healthier, fairer, more inclusive societies.
From the everyday to the exceptional: research inspired by the real world.
Professor Adrian Barnett, IHBI
Mr Rupesh Gautam is a 2nd year PhD student interested in the areas of Migration and Health. In 2017, he was awarded the QUT postgraduate research scholarship to explore the impact of adult children's international migration on the health and psychosocial well-being of parents aged 60 years and above in his home country of Nepal.
Professor Adrian Barnett
In contemporary science the need to ‘publish or perish’ leads to the favouring of publication quantity over quality. To solve this problem, a way of measuring aspects of research such as reproducibility and good research practice is needed.
Professor Adrian Barnett and colleagues recently published a paper proposing an affordable way to improve research quality by auditing research papers. Professor Barnett recently presented his work to the prestigious American Institute of Biological Sciences.
Associate Professor Alison Marshall
Associate Professor Alison Marshall was funded by NHMRC to refine and evaluate MobileMums, a personalised physical activity program designed for women with young children. MobileMums is primarily delivered via clever and thoughtful theory-based text-messages that encourage and support behaviour change.
Years of research and development have resulted in a fully automated cost-effective program that has the potential to increase the prevalence of healthy physical activity levels by 20%, and, with that, immense population health gains. Options for implementing the MobileMums program across the community are currently being investigated.
Dr Deb Duthie
Dr Deb Duthie is the Coordinator for the Cherbourg-QUT Project, an innovative community project in partnership with Cherbourg Aboriginal Community. Existing now for eight years, this project was the first, and is one of the only solid QUT partnerships, with a rural Aboriginal community. With the mentorship of academics, students work on community-initiated projects on placement or within their elective.
The project is positioned as part of a larger ongoing project and knowledges are handed over for future teams. Over time, smaller projects accumulate to form a significant contribution to the Cherbourg community. To date, over 40 students and 12 mentors from QUT have participated in the project.
Dr Elizabeth Martin
Dr Elizabeth Martin is interested in improving maternity health. In 2018 she was awarded a $180,000 Advance Queensland Industry Research Fellowship for her PROMs study, in which she is using patient-reported outcomes to discover how to make pregnancy and birth better for women.
Dr Margo Sendall
Dr Margo Sendall is a senior lecturer and the Postgraduate Research Coordinator at QUT’s School of Public Health and Social Work. As a settings-based health promotion expert, her research deals closely with at-risk hard-to-reach blue collar workers such as miners and truck drivers. She is currently the Principal Investigator of a $120,000 tender to investigate smoking, nutrition, physical activity and obesity risk factors for truck driver, publishing numerous papers in this field.
Associate Professor Yvette Miller
Associate Professor Yvette Miller's research into maternity care culminates in Birthplace - a globally unique, consumer-centred, open data digital platform that gives women access to information about birth services so they can make more informed choices - increasing agency for women and improving maternity care.
Birthplace importantly provides information for comparison of all options across both private and public sectors, and uses women's own reports of their care experience to compare options. Research for Birthplace has been a decade in the making and is now in its final stages of design and development.
Dr Heather Fraser
Dr Heather Fraser is lead investigator in the Dairy Farmers project. This 2018 pilot already has National interest and is set to make a big impact on the health and wellbeing of farmers and animals.
The Dairy Farmers Project involves a series of interviews with dairy farmers about the consequences for them and for animals of occupational workplace stressors. How does animal-based farming affect humans and non-humans and what are the consequences of this means of food production?
Dr Amina Tariq
Dr Tariq's research into technology and health led to the recent Springer Publishing release of her co-edited book, mHealth Innovation in Asia: Grassroots Challenges and Practical Interventions. This book looks at the social and cultural contexts of mobile technology use in medicine in an Asian context, including Dr Tariq's findings of her study of the use of mHealth solutions amongst female community health workers in Pakistan. The open access book has garnered immense readership with more than 6000 downloads (three times average readership for similar discipline books by Springer) since being published in February 2018.
Professor Hilary Bambrick
Professor Hilary Bambrick is an environmental epidemiologist and bioanthropologist and Head of School of Public Health and Social Work at QUT. Her research focuses on the health impacts of climate variability and change. She is regularly invited to consult for government (Federal, State and international) and non-government organisations on climate change impacts and adaptation, and is an appointee to the Climate Council of Australia.She recently contributed a chapter to the book “The Coal Truth” together with the CEO of Greenpeace Australia, David Ritter and other co-authors,where she pointed out the numerous public health implications of coal use both directly in terms of air pollution and indirectly through climate change.
Dr Kristiann Heesch
Dr Kristiann Heesch is a Senior Lecturer in Health Promotion in the School of Public Health and Social Work at QUT. Her research focuses on physical activity and health for people living with or at risk of chronic conditions, with a special focus on bicycle use, both for recreation and for transport. A recent paper she has recently co-authored has found that passing distances by car drivers appears to be influenced by cyclist’s clothing. Cyclists wearing street clothes were more likely to have a greater passing distance than those wearing lycra. Her findings also do not find any significant difference in gender as influencing passing distances by drivers, contrary to findings in similar studies.
Dr Lisa Stafford
As a social community planner, Dr Lisa Stafford is passionate about creating inclusive communities. In an effort to expose and contest physical, social and political-economic conditions that create spaces of exclusion for people with diverse ages and abilities, Dr Stafford leads the inter-university Making Play For All Project. In collaboration with community organisation Touched By Olivia, this project seeks to create the foundational knowledge necessary for the creation of inclusive play spaces in the community.
Ms Louise Baldwin
Louise Baldwin has dedicated her career to skin cancer prevention in memory of her father who died from melanoma when she was just a child. For the past 20 years, her work has involved skin cancer prevention and early detection along with leading health promotion approaches in building healthy communities and addressing preventable risk factors for chronic diseases.
This year, she was recognised for her work and awarded the Lord Mayor’s Trailblazers grant. This award will help Ms Baldwin attract health promotion conferences to Brisbane and help expand her work to build healthy communities across Queensland.
John Paul Cauchi
A PhD student from Malta, John Paul Cauchi’s PhD thesis interrogates the intersection of climate change, food security and public health in the Pacific Island nation of Kiribati. John Paul’s main research focus is how food security challenges in Kiribati impact on public health through rising noncommunicable diseases, and to what degree climate change impacts. John Paul hopes his work will assist Kiribati and other communities achieve better food security.
“My dog Alice inspires my curiosity and creativity. She makes me a better thinker.” - Associate Professor Heather Fraser
Ready to be an impact maker?
John Paul Cauchi, PhD student
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OBlock, Room O-D608
Victoria Park Road
Kelvin Grove QLD 4059