Emeritus Professor Dorothy Scott

Australian Centre for Child Protection

BA(Hons), GradDipSocialStudies, MSW, PhD

Emeritus Professor Dorothy Scott established the Australian Centre for Child Protection at the University of South Australia in 2005, and was its foundation chair and is currently serving as acting director. Prior to this, she was head of the school of Social Work at the University of Melbourne, and chief executive officer of The Ian Potter Foundation, one of Australia's leading philanthropic trusts.

Born in Wales, she came to Australia with her family when aged four and completed her education in Victorian public schools. As a teenager, she volunteered to assist children in state institutional care and, deeply moved by their suffering, committed herself to the cause of preventing child abuse and neglect.

As a young social worker in the 1970s, Professor Scott founded Victoria's first sexual assault counselling service for women and children, and pioneered group therapy for women suffering from post-partum psychiatric disorders.

She has conducted several child protection inquiries, including the 2011 Protecting Victoria's Vulnerable Children inquiry. Professor Scott continues to advise national and state governments on child protection, and in 2011 was appointed by the Prime Minister to the Australian National Council on Drugs. 

In 1999 she was awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia for her services to education and research in child welfare, and in 2001 she received a Centenary Medal for service to the community.

Areas of study and research

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