Monash University Research and Education Network (MonREN)

Monash University Research and Education Network (MonREN)

What is a Practice-Based Research Network?

Practice-based Research Networks (PBRNs) represent collaborations between clinicians in general practice, consumers, policy makers and academics that are dedicated to working together on relevant research questions to translate new knowledge into practice.

PBRNs have been used in Australia and overseas to help improve the professional lives of those working in general practice, to support teaching and foster meaningful research. A PBRN is a group of clinicians with common interests in research and teaching who:

  • Are passionate about improving the quality of care.
  • Are interested in research or teaching but lack relevant experience and/or resources.
  • Have unanswered questions from clinical practice for which they seek answers.

What are the impacts of PBRNs?

PBRNs can:

  • Break down barriers between healthcare professionals, academics, funding agencies, policymakers and local communities.
  • Help GPs and those working with them connect with like-minded colleagues.
  • Help speed up the translation of research into practice and optimise quality of care.
  • Foster integrated care within health care systems.

What is the Monash University Research and Education Network (MonREN)?

MonREN is the Monash University Department of General Practice’s PBRN, encompassing general practices in the South East and Eastern regions of Melbourne. Since its inception in 2010, MonREN has been building the foundations for a regional network that supports general practice to engage in research and education to improve patient health outcomes and advance the discipline of general practice.
The strong relationships that have been fostered over time between Monash University’s Department of General Practice and general practices in our region are critical to our function as a leading academic department of general practice and at the core of MonREN’s ability to affect change and healthcare improvement.

Information for GPs and practices

Information for researchers

Our vision

Our vision is for MonREN to be nationally and internationally recognised as a leading practice based research network engaging in high quality academic endeavour that improves patient health outcomes and advances the discipline of general practice.

Our mission

Improving patient outcomes through partnership with practices in our region.

Our values

  • Transparency
  • Equity
  • Quality
  • Respect
  • Collaboration
  • Communication


MonREN will have achieved:

  • A robust and sustainable governance structure
  • Translation of the outcomes of the Monash Partners/MonReN project
  • Increased number of general practices in our region involved in academic activity
  • Evidence of member and stakeholder engagement with the network
  • Evidence of collaboration to support academic endeavour
  • Secured funding for sustainability of the network
  • An up-to-date PBRN data repository and procedures

Our approach

We will achieve these outcomes through:

  • Strong and transparent governance processes
  • Research shaped by consumer and practitioner needs
  • Two-way communication with network members
  • Strong partnerships with relevant external stakeholders and consumer groups
  • Supporting practices to deliver high quality general practice education
  • Making it easier for practices to engage with both general practice education and research in the long term
  • Building a culture that values quality general practice patient care informed by education and research

MonREN attributes

  • Stable administrative support
  • Strong focus on data and data linkage
  • Pragmatic
  • Focussed on practice, practitioner and patient needs
  • Evidence based
  • Sustainable

MonREN Steering Group

  • Professor Grant Russell (Chair)
  • Professor Danielle Mazza
  • Associate Professor Chris Barton
  • Dr Jennifer Neil
  • Dr Sonia Srinivasan (Academic Registrar representative)
  • Dr Atish Manek
  • Ms Sandra Zovko
  • Ms Sharon Clifford (MonREN Network Manager)

MonREN-Monash Partners Practice Based Research Network Collaboration

Monash University’s Department of General Practice and Monash Partners have united to bring together GPs, practice teams and academics with common interests in research and/or teaching in a Practice Based Research Network. Support from Monash Partners has allowed us to reframe the network to be best able to meet the needs and wants of our main stakeholders; GPs and practice staff within East and South East Melbourne. Our collaboration involved speaking with local experts, reviewing international best practice for PBRNs and conducting two forums with GPs, practice nurses, practice managers and other key stakeholders. The 2 forums allowed GPs and practice staff to discuss their needs in developing a PBRN and identify research priorities relevant to their work, interests and the patients they see.