Researchers smiling and talking

Research streams

A collaborative approach to prevention, treatment and research

With a focus on prevention, early intervention, treatment and epidemiology, our research streams facilitate knowledge exchange and develop strategic partnerships.

Research streams

Research programs

Early intervention and treatment


Professor Katherine Mills
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One in every two people will develop a mental or substance use disorder during their lifetime.

Our treatment research aims to develop and evaluate the efficacy of novel interventions to treat these disorders as well as their combination.

Our research has focused on the testing of psychotherapies and pharmacotherapies for individuals who have both a substance use disorder and the most common mental disorders including post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, and depressive and psychotic disorders.

Epidemiology and biostatistics


A/Prof Tim Slade
Professor Tim Slade
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Epidemiological studies of mental and substance use disorders are vital to understanding the size and nature of the health challenges posed by these disorders.

Our epidemiology research aims to carry out epidemiological studies, both cross-sectional and longitudinal, examining the prevalence, correlates and natural history of mental and substance use disorders.

We also aim to refine and improve how mental health and substance use disorders are diagnosed and classified.



Professor Nicola Newton
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Mental and substance use disorders are the leading causes of disability among young people worldwide.

In Australia, one in four young people will meet criteria for a substance use or mental disorder in any year and half will develop this disorder before they leave school.

Our prevention research aims to reduce the occurrence and cost of these disorders, by developing, evaluating and translating innovative approaches to prevention in schools and communities.

Research development and strategy


Professor Cath Chapman
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Effective prevention, early intervention and treatment can significantly reduce disease burden by halting, delaying, and interrupting the onset and progression of disorders.

Despite this, Australia spends only 1.7 percent of total health expenditure on prevention, fewer than two-thirds of all other OECD countries. To change this, we need initiatives which represent genuine partnerships across researchers, clinicians, people with lived experience, and philanthropy.

Our research development and strategy activities are designed to develop these key partnerships and contribute to a diverse and world-leading mental and substance use research program.

Technology, innovation and translation


Professor Frances Kay-Lambkin
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Poor communication of research findings is a significant barrier to population-level dissemination to facilitate knowledge exchange and improve health outcomes.

Our technology, innovation and translation research aims to address this barrier through a multi-modal translation and community engagement model, with a focus on leveraging responsive and flexible technology targeted to clinicians, practitioners, policymakers and end-users to facilitate knowledge exchange.

The goal of our research is to increase dialogue between end-users, policymakers, researchers, professionals and practitioners.

Key research themes

Browse our research projects and training and resources for clinicians, schools and the general public to find out more about our current and completed research projects under our major research streams and themes.

Mental health and substance use

  • Anxiety
  • Trauma/PTSD
  • Alcohol
  • Cannabis
  • Crystal methamphetamine (ice)
  • Ecstasy/MDMA
  • Heroin
  • Tobacco, smoking and vaping

Other areas

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
  • eHealth
  • Family and friends
  • Health professionals
  • Parenting
  • Protective factors
  • Risk factors
  • School communities
  • Youth / young people