ERA research impact

The 'Engagement and Impact' assessment was undertaken as a companion to the 2018 Excellence in Research for Australia report and is an initiative under the Government’s National Innovation and Science Agenda.

It looked at how research from 40 participating Australian Universities had enhanced the economy, society, environment or culture, and ranked them low, medium or high impact.

Seven research programs from La Trobe University were assessed as delivering high impact:

  • Professor Helen McLachlan and Professor Della Forster from La Trobe University’s Judith Lumley Centre in the School of Nursing and Midwifery has pioneered world-leading research that shows one-on-one midwife care reduces caesarean section rates during childbirth and improves health outcomes for babies, resulting in Australian hospitals increasing the availability of one-on-one midwife care.
  • The work of Dr Nicola Stern and Dr Jillian Garvey from La Trobe’s Department of History and Archaeology provided key information enabling Traditional Owners to reconnect to cultural heritage practices, skills and knowledge.
  • Associate Professor Jill Murray from La Trobe’s Law School led ground-breaking research that helped shape laws applying to domestic workers around the world, improving equality and protection under international law.
  • Professor Michael Clarke and Professor Andrew Bennett from La Trobe’s Department of Ecology, Environment and Evolution have led key research that has had a profound influence on fire policy and management, providing a critical evidence base for a change in policy on planned burning from a hectare-based approach to a risk-based approach in order to conserve biodiversity in Australia.
  • Researchers from the Agribio collaboration between La Trobe University’s School of Applied Systems Biology and Agriculture Victoria led innovative research in genomics, to help secure a more productive and sustainable dairy industry.
  • La Trobe’s Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society in the School of Psychology and Public Health conducted research that was translated into a program delivered across Victorian schools to tackle bullying.
  • Professor Leeanne Carey of La Trobe University’s School of Allied Health has translated new discoveries in how the brain learns and recovers into an effective rehabilitation therapy to help people regain their sense of touch, and use it in daily activities. This approach, called SENSe, is now being used in clinical settings nationally and internationally improving outcomes for more stroke survivors.

The ARC also found that the University was highly engaged with industry and communities in the fields of:

  • Public and Allied Health Sciences
  • Studies in Human Society
  • Law and Legal Studies, and
  • History and Archaeology.

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