Join a community-engaged research project

The Stakeholder Engaged Scholarship Unit (SESU) continues to receive significant interest from community organisations to collaborate with ACU on research for social, cultural, and economic benefit.

The SESU is now seeking Expressions of Interest (EOIs) from academic and professional staff with relevant research experience to join the research teams on three community-based research projects tackling social issues. EOIs will close on Friday 17 May at 5pm AEST.

About the SESU
The SESU is ACU’s centralised unit for community engaged research. It invites non-profit community and social service agencies to grow their research capacity alongside ACU by proposing research projects to support communities facing disadvantage or marginalisation. Each year, the SESU pairs a select number of community organisations with researchers from across the university, after researchers self-nominate to join the project teams. Together the researchers and the community partners collaborate on applied research; producing both practical and impactful outputs that the SESU’s partners can implement as part of their community development work.
Who can apply?
Academic staff, as well as professional staff with relevant research experience from all areas of the university. You will need to seek the approval of your supervisor and member of the executive to join.
Why should I apply?

You will have the opportunity to work closely with a partner organisation on a project for about 18 months, likely longer for the international project below. It’s a unique chance to share expertise, co-design the research together and work collaboratively to deliver a project that will have a direct impact for the community it serves.

Don’t just take our word for it! Hear from two of the academics who have worked with us about their experience with the SESU:

You will be compensated for your work through an adequate workload allocation (for academic staff). Your organisational unit receives funds for buy-out of some of your time to the SESU project.

Which projects can I apply for?

This year there are three projects you can nominate yourself for:

Australian Marist Solidarity (AMS) are committed to enhancing the lives of young people in Baucau, Timor Leste. Working with ACU, they seek an optimal model for the Marist Brothers and AMS to be engaged in sustainable and effective youth development within the region. They aim to learn about the development goals of young people, map the community’s existing assets, resources, strengths, and capacities to meet these goals. This exploratory research will assist in the development of a framework to guide their future activities with young people in Baucau.

To help improve the health and wellbeing of communities and address health and social inequity in Melbourne, three organisations – cohealth, Access Health and Community, and the City of Yarra – are teaming up with ACU to understand the need for allied health services for social housing residents. With a particular interest in developing a model for a co-designed Interprofessional Student-Led Allied Health (ISAH) service to improve health outcomes for this cohort, they seek to develop a business case and evaluate a pilot of the ISAH service with the City of Yarra.

St Vincent’s Care Services is seeking ACU’s support to establish an evaluation of their Heartprint residential aged care model in three locations in Queensland. An integrated person-centred relational model of care, Heartprint intends to support the agency and independence of residents to live their lives in the way they choose. Adopting a 360-degree evaluation approach – listening to residents, their families and aged care workers – they wish to know the outcomes and impacts and strategies for improvement to best optimise relationships and joy for people living in the Heartprint residential aged care.

Find out more about this year’s projects

How do I apply?

Read about the application process and download the EOI form

Keen to know more?

Come along to our online information session on Tuesday 7 May, 2.30-3.30pm, hosted by ACU’s Community Engagement Community of Practice.

The session will be recorded.

Questions can also be directed to

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