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Research and Evaluation Program

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The Bouverie Centre: Victoria’s Family Institute is part of the College of Science, Health and Engineering, La Trobe University but is located off-campus in a purpose built centre in Brunswick, funded by the Victorian Department of Health.

Our research program focuses on the experiences and needs of Australian families and communities, particularly those that are marginalised and vulnerable, and the services that provide support to them and their individual members. We have a special interest in developing and applying innovative qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods research to understand what role family, family relationships and systemic interventions play in health and wellbeing and to facilitate the translation of this knowledge into clinical practice and within human service systems. Read more about our key research priorities and interests which align with La Trobe University's research focus area, Building Healthy Communities.

The Bouverie Centre runs a clinical family therapy program that sees at least 200 new families per year. These families present with complex issues including serious mental illness, brain injury, experiences of trauma or abuse, and gambling and alcohol and other drug problems. We are in a unique position to collect information about the health, wellbeing and relationship experiences from these typically ‘hard-to-reach’ (from a research point of view) families.

We have close links with statewide public health and welfare services (for example, mental health, alcohol and other drugs, Gambler’s Help, and community health services; Aboriginal Controlled Community Organisations; and NGOs), established through ongoing training and organisational development projects. We also work closely with family and carer organisations and networks. These collaborative partnerships provide an ideal context for clinical model development, and for continued research into what supports interventions of established effectiveness being embedded in services, leading to ‘real world’ outcomes. Read more about the research projects we currently have underway and those recently completed.

These joint research efforts offer significant opportunities for higher degree research students.The Bouverie Centre has an active postgraduate research program. Since 1996, more than 40 students have completed minor Master's research theses, and two Master's by Research. Over the past decade, ten Bouverie students have completed PhDs.

Dedicated research staff

  • Dr Peter McKenzie, Coordinator Higher Degree Program and Carer Academic  
  • Henry von Doussa, Research Officer


Vikki Reynolds presents Justice-Doing, Collective Ethics and The “Zone of Fabulousness”

The Bouverie Centre is delighted to be hosting an interactive workshop by Vikki Reynolds on how we can be of use in community work that happens in contexts of social injustices.

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Family Violence and Mental Health Services

The Bouverie Centre presented a webinar describing the centre’s work exploring the intersection between Family Violence and Mental Health.

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