Since launching in October 2014, the Life Course Centre has initiated a number of important research projects and delivered a range of impressive results. The Centre’s researchers have published in a wide range of fields, including parenting, education, gender and income, mental health and well-being, alcohol and substance abuse, and Indigenous communities. This world-leading research is contributing to the global bank of knowledge and understanding of the life events and conditions which promote the inheritance of disadvantage across generations, and the interventions capable of limiting these outcomes.
In addition to conducting ground-breaking research, the Life Course Centre aims to deliver concrete outcomes in the following areas:
- Research training
- Translating research outcomes
- Contributing to national research capability and competitiveness.
The Centre is unique in its ability to bring together academic and government researchers, policymakers and community agencies to tackle the problem of deep and persistent disadvantage. This creates an equally unique opportunity to provide intense, structured apprenticeships to the most outstanding PhD candidates, postdoctoral fellows and early career researchers from Australia and around the world.
The power of education to transform people’s lives is at the core of the Life Course Centre’s value set. In keeping with this belief, we promote PhD scholarships to attract students from disadvantaged backgrounds in rural Queensland, Victoria and Western Australia.
Translating research outcomes
The success of the Centre’s research programs hinges on clear communication with ‘end users’—people such as social workers, community groups, and families experiencing disadvantage, as well as government policymakers and agencies who deliver support services to those in need.
The Centre uses a variety of mediums to reach these groups—from publications and policy round tables, to providing professional and online training for practitioners and families. It also works directly with community groups and vulnerable families as part of the research.
Contributing to national research capability and competitiveness
The Centre directly contributes to building Australia’s capability and capacity in advanced social and behavioural science, through the training and professional development opportunities it offers to PhD students, early career researchers and partner organisation researchers.
The Life Course Centre is focused on developing Australia’s data and analytic capabilities to match and exceed those of the UK, the US and Germany—countries at the forefront of international developments in this area. The Centre’s ability to undertake longitudinal studies ensures it is able to yield insights across generations. The Life Course Centre is a global leader on the causes and workable solutions to deep and persistent disadvantage.