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Our Scope

We propose to provide research training in the evidence-base of public health, building on current longitudinal studies within the investigators' research programs. Our strategy will address current needs for critical assessment of evidence on population health issues from the broad prospective offered by longitudinal studies and the development of their methodology.

Our Aims

  1. To increase the number and experience of independent researchers in public health, specifically those with a high degree of expertise in longitudinal study methodology.
  2. To improve the standard of longitudinal research in public health, building on disciplinary-specific expertise to develop multi-disciplinary understanding and policy relevant approaches.
  3. To establish a group with critical mass and national and international reputation which can maximally utilise and contribute to knowledge by applying existing longitudinal methods to the practice of public health, and develop new knowledge in longitudinal health research methods.
  4. To increase effective linkages between researchers and policy developers, specifically to increase mutual awareness of the benefits of longitudinal research and its contribution to policy development.

Our Strategy

We propose to use the collection of longitudinal studies in our research programs, plus the current imperatives of evidence-based policy development to provide the infrastructure, rationale and motivation for building public health research capacity in methodology. These studies would effectively be raw material for training and research in methodology. They have already been funded and substantive results published. Collectively they cover a rich mix of longitudinal studies in design and content. This combination provides an intellectually-resourced environment, and a diversity of methodological challenges. The project leaders will supervise research Fellows in researching existing approaches to important methodological issues in design and analysis. Fellows will use the data sets to: (a) evaluate and compare applicability of differing approaches, (b) establish the need to develop innovative methods, (c) develop and publish new methods.

Our Unit

This unit is innovative, in its learning-by-doing approach in an integrated multidisciplinary team, with a firm focus on evaluation of methodological approaches and development of innovative methodology. It is significant in that it will create an unprecedented (in Australia) critical mass of expertise in longitudinal public health research that will provide the basis for a new generation of researchers. It is competitive, in that it builds on a solid basis of existing expertise with unique access to a substantial collection of large longitudinal databases, illustrative of a wide range of research problems. Team leaders have considerable expertise, experience and networks. They will provide strong mentoring for Fellows, as well as access to national and international networks.

If you wish to download a copy of the NHMRC Research Proposial Synopsis, click here.