About us

The Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society (ARCSHS) conducts world-class research and education on the social dimensions of sexuality, gender, health and human relationships. We work collaboratively with other researchers, communities, community-based organisations, government and professionals to advance knowledge and promote positive change in policy, practice and people’s lives.

Our mission will be achieved by pursuing three aims:

  • Advance new knowledge and learning
  • Maximise research impact
  • Enhance capacity for world-class research

Our history

History

ARCSHS is located within the College of Science, Health and Engineering and the School of Psychology of Public Health at La Trobe University, Melbourne.

Since it was founded in 1993, ARCSHS has become the major player in framing the agenda on, and delivering the evidence to understand, sex and sexuality in contemporary Australia, particularly in relation to health, education and social justice.

The Centre uses an inter-disciplinary approach to research, and includes staff with expertise in:

  • sociology
  • psychology
  • anthropology
  • cultural studies
  • history
  • gender and sexuality studies
  • education
  • political science
  • public health
  • community education.

ARCSHS has unique expertise in community-engaged research, particularly working with marginalised and difficult-to-reach communities. The Centre specialises in using research findings to produce training and educational resources for practitioners and to advise policy development.

ARCSHS receives funding from a range of sources including national competitive grant funding through the Australian Research Council and National Health and Medical Research Council, contracts and consultancies with state and federal government departments, and grants from non-government organisations, philanthropic organisations and industry.

Strategic planning

Strategic Direction 2020-2023

Our strategic direction for the next three years is to become Australia’s leading centre of research excellence in sex, gender, sexuality and consumption, known globally for the excellence and impact of our work. ARCSHS is already a high-performing centre, producing quality research, and leading policy and social change. This new strategic direction will entail a renewed focus on research excellence through originality, coherence and productivity. Pursuing this strategic direction will allow ARCSHS to contribute more effectively than ever to answering today’s pressing questions on sexuality and gender, and the changing social dynamics of sex, drug use, health and wellbeing

Annual Reports