Health, wellbeing and social change

Health and wellbeing are profoundly shaped by our social and physical environments. Our health is more than a product of our genes or 'luck'.

Where we live, work and play powerfully influences our life chances. While biomedical knowledge has brought improvements to our lives, we need to better understand how society and social change shape health and illness.

Our researchers investigate the socio-cultural aspects of health, illness and wellbeing.

We are working at the forefront of our fields, studying issues such as chronic illness, ageing, sexual health, emergency care, and drug use.

We study diverse populations, including young people, minority ethnic groups, and groups with particular conditions, including HIV/AIDS and hepatitis C.


The Centre for Women's Studies and Gender Research serves as an international base for research, teaching and collaboration on feminist and gender issues.

It was established to encourage and supervise research, and to foster an active environment through seminars, workshops, conferences and funded research.

The Centre for Population and Urban Research addresses significant issues in the fields of population movements, urban planning, education and the labour market.

Working with industry

We have established strong links with clinicians, health service providers and policy makers working outside the University. We offer a point of contact and a support network for colleagues and practitioners and we host events of wide interest. This helps nurture research through higher degrees, and develops links between scholars and practitioners both local and international.

We have established ties with a number of overseas institutions, including King's College, London, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, and University of Vienna, and welcome visiting scholars from within Australia and overseas.

Contributing capabilities

  • Chronic illness
  • Ageing
  • Sexual health
  • Emergency care
  • Drug use and addiction
  • Women's studies and gender issues