How can people develop the capabilities they need to choose a life they value and that is free from disadvantage?


The Life Course Centre is a once in a lifetime opportunity to make a difference in the lives of Australia’s most vulnerable, to take social science research to a new level, and to establish the social policy principles and foundations needed to ensure we achieve our vision and goals to make Australia a more equal and inclusive society.

The Centre represents the first time that large-scale intergenerational analysis has been conducted comprehensively in Australia in order to identify causes, evaluate interventions, and implement solutions to create real and lasting change.

Established in 2014, the Life Course Centre is administered by The University of Queensland and is a collaboration with The University of Sydney, The University of Melbourne and The University of Western Australia. The Centre also has a wide range of collaborative links to national and international partners, including research institutions in North America, Europe and Asia.

The Centre harnesses the interdisciplinary expertise of leading researchers in their fields, nationally and internationally, and has powerful partnerships with government and non-government organisations involved in human service delivery and policy. The Centre capitalises on existing data investments by government combined with advanced data integration methods to follow Australian families from parents to their adult children.

To understand and break the cycle of deep and persistent disadvantage requires empirical evidence and validated models for the transmission of disadvantage on multiple social and economic dimensions that recognise complex interactions and adaptive processes. Our researchers are national and international leaders in the study of social disadvantage and come from a diverse range of disciplines, including economics, sociology, psychology, criminology and statistics.

Through significant co-investment from the Australian Government and our collaborating and partner organisations, the Life Course Centre is building the critical evidence-base for new policies to combat disadvantage and to make a real difference to the lives of children and families in Australia, and the world.