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Implementation science within the cancer care context


We are seeking expressions of interest (EOI) from highly motivated candidates interested in pursuing a PhD program in implementation science within the cancer care context. This program of research will explore implementation of health service interventions addressing anxiety and depression in adults with cancer in terms of program engagement and sustainability. An EOI can be  submitted to Dr Heather Shepherd or Dr Joanne Shaw by email, using contact details below:   or
This project is co-supervised by academic staff at PoCoG and/or other members of the ADAPT team as appropriate for the candidate’s background and experience.


Dr Heather Shepherd, Professor Phyllis Butow, Dr Joanne Shaw.

Research location

School of Psychology

Program type



Psycho-Oncology Co-operative Research Group (PoCoG) is a cross-disciplinary research group which aims to improve outcomes for people affected by cancer by developing and facilitating high quality, collaborative and clinically relevant research that focuses on interventions and services to optimise psychosocial and supportive care. 
PoCoG has recently developed a Clinical Pathway for the management of anxiety and depression in adults with cancer - the first of its kind internationally. The Anxiety and Depression Pathway Program (ADAPT), a 5 year program of research funded through a Translation Program Grant awarded by the Cancer Institute NSW is focused on implementation of this clinical pathway into routine cancer care and offers the opportunity for public health, clinical and health service sectors to work together to produce evidence on the most effective ways to implement a clinical pathway in Australian cancer services. Within this, ADAPT offers opportunities to explore implementation from a health services research perspective. Possible areas of research include: undertaking qualitative analyses of participants attitudes to implementation strategies for a clinical pathway to address anxiety and depression in cancer patients and/or; investigating predictors and facilitators of implementation sustainability within cancer services.

Additional information


  • Minimum qualifications: Honours (1 or 2A) or Master’s Degree in, health or social sciences, psychology public health, medicine, nursing or other related field.
  • Applicants must be Australian citizens, Australian permanent residents or New Zealand citizens. 
  • The successful candidate through the EOI stage will be expected to enrol at the University of Sydney and commence studies in early 2019. 

In addition to the academic requirements set out in the Science Postgraduate Handbook, you may be required to satisfy a number of inherent requirements to complete this degree. Example of inherent requirement may include:
  • Confidential disclosure and registration of a disability that may hinder your performance in your degree;
  • Confidential disclosure of a pre-existing or current medical condition that may hinder your performance in your degree (e.g. heart disease, pace-maker, significant immune suppression, diabetes, vertigo, etc.);
  • Ability to perform independently and/or with minimal supervision;
  • Ability to undertake certain physical tasks (e.g. heavy lifting);
  • Ability to undertake observatory, sensory and communication tasks;
  • Ability to spend time at remote sites (e.g. One Tree Island, Narrabri and Camden);
  • Ability to work in confined spaces or at heights;
  • Ability to operate heavy machinery (e.g. farming equipment);
  • Hold or acquire an Australian driver’s licence;
  • Hold a current scuba diving license;
  • Hold a current Working with Children Check;
  • Meet initial and ongoing immunisation requirements (e.g. Q-Fever, Vaccinia virus, Hepatitis, etc.)
You must consult with your nominated supervisor regarding any identified inherent requirements before completing your application.

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Opportunity ID

The opportunity ID for this research opportunity is 2502