A young man is using a saw while an older man works in the background

Education and training

Our new research shows apprentices who cancel their employment contracts do so because they often feel they are subjected to tough working conditions for little pay (undertaking menial, repetitive tasks and long hours), receiving little guidance about their progress on the job. How can behavioural science help?

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Sign on a building reads: Liberty

Second chances

This was me en route to my stakeholder meeting! This is for our project on improving services and support for vulnerable people at risk of reoffending. This has been a massive project that I have loved working on. This group of people are underserved and yet over policed. They want a second chance after a life time caught up in the criminal justice system.

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Health and Social Inclusion

In a previous post, I explained how social science helps local governments implement public health planning and programs. This time, I’ll provide some specific examples about how social science addresses issues of social inclusion for vulnerable and marginalised community groups.

Previously, I described how, in the context of health, social inclusion  is about ensuring everyone in the community has access and can fully participate in health services. Social science is used to shape policies, community programs and health services for minority and special needs groups. This includes people of different cultures and different family types, addressing disability and socio-economic issues.

Local councils often have terrific health education and community wellbeing programs, but minority groups may not know where to find information due to their socio-economic and educational background. For example, research shows that a significant proportion of elderly people (54%) do not use the internet, and still prefer to talk on the phone rather than use the internet to find information, yet many local councils have most of their services advertised on their websites.

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Writing for Policy

I spent two days at a training course, which was about writing more effectively for policy audiences. There were many useful tips about how to simplify expression so that stakeholders can better understand decisions and so leaders might support our desired outcomes. We analysed our writing to make expression clear, to be precise in our meaning, and more succinct. Day two was especially fun as it was more interactive. They presented data and case studies showing that at least one third of writing can be simplified, and up to two thirds of unnecessary words can be edited out. As we … Continue reading Writing for Policy

A Black woman and white man reach up to a wall filled with small plants

From Local to Global Health Connections

Health and wellbeing development trends go beyond individual factors, by connecting community trends to broader Australian and international social issues. This includes the services and facilities that people have access to, their experiences of social connectedness (which can impact knowledge and access to local services) and broader socio-economic patterns. Shifts in the labour market, changes to the national budget and other factors impact on local dynamics and the ability for ordinary community members and their families to maximise their health. Local health and wellbeing plans are connected to other policies and strategies by local councils; state and federal government legislation; regional priorities; national social policies; and international guidelines.

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