Our research

A vision of wellbeing

Our vision at the Asia Pacific Centre for Work Health and Safety is to conduct high quality social and psychological research designed to elucidate and promote well-being, quality of life and effective functioning in individuals, organisations and in the community.

The research we conduct aims to be of value in dealing with social exclusion, stress, distress, life changes, anger and a range of related issues. We aim to develop the highest quality applied social and psychological research to benefit the family, community and industry.

Research directions

We approach our research from a number of angles:

  • identifying psychosocial risk and risk groups   
  • evaluating interventions, actions and campaigns
  • informing prevention policies and practices
  • setting priorities for policies and interventions
  • benchmarking at a national and international level
  • monitoring changing trends, legislation and new developments
  • supporting research on specific topics
  • developing national standards
  • forecasting emerging risks
  • developing new technologies

The Centre is the home of the Work & Stress Research Group, a dynamic group of researchers who focuses on psychosocial risk research and has a significant track record with Australian Research Council funded research. We are also home to the StressCafe, an online portal for gathering and sharing important information about workplace stress, and the associated Australian Workplace Barometer, a nationally representative database of psychosocial risk.

Selected research projects

The dynamic interplay of physical and psychosocial safety in frontline healthcare workplaces in Australia and Malaysia

Chief Investigator: Professor Maureen Dollard

Partner Organisations: SafeWork SA, University of Malaya, Flinders Medical Centre

Funding Organisation: Australian Research Council Linkage Grant- $685,000.


Helping retail employees deal with threatening situations at work: Coping with acute and chronic stressors

Chief Investigator: Associate Professor Michelle Tuckey

Partner Organisation: Shop Distributive Association

Funding Organisation: Australian Research Council Linkage Grant- $303,000


Pathways to active citizenship: Refugee youth and their transition from school to further education, training and employment

Chief Investigators: A/Prof Tahereh Ziaian, Prof Maureen Dollard, Dr Helen Barrie, Prof Adrian EstermanDr Helena de Anstiss

Partner Organisations: Multicultural Youth South Australia (MYSA)Australian Migrant Resource Centre (AMRC)

Funding Organisations: Australian Research Council Linkage Grant, Multicultural Youth South Australia

Read more about this project


The significance of psychosocial safety climate, health and happiness for productivity at work

Chief Investigator: Professor Maureen Dollard

Funding Organisation: Australian Research Council Discovery Grant, $348,000


Transition from school to work: A 10-year longitudinal study of unemployment, underemployment, social exclusion, and mental health in young people

Chief Investigator: Professor Tony Winefield

Funding Organisation: Australian Research Council Discovery Grant, $495,500


Designed with Care: Improving job design in the SA aged care industry

Chief Investigator: A/Prof Phil Kavanagh and Research fellow: Dr Valerie O’Keeffe

Funding Organisation: SafeWork SA, $124,967