School of Population Health

Public Health Seminar Series

The School of Population Health Seminar Series offers an opportunity for staff, students and others with an interest in public health research to learn more about the research and related activity of the School. Seminars are held most Wednesdays between 12pm and 1pm and are available online through Microsoft Teams. If you would like more information about the Seminar Series, or if you have suggestions regarding speakers and or topics (including your own) please contact Michele Rains-Joseph. Upcoming seminars may be found at Events.

Watch seminar videos

Living with dementia: is there a place for resilience?

Dr Julie Christie has experience of working with people living with dementia as a nurse, social worker and social work manager

New thinking about how to support people with dementia and their care partners is needed if health, social care and housing support systems are to provide more personalised, impactful and cost-effective solutions. Resilience could offer a solution. However, the concept is not well understood and people with dementia are often assumed to be ‘risky people’ This lecture explores our understanding of dementia and resilience, and provides an opportunity to reflect on current thinking and practice in this area. <Download flyer> (Presented: 30 May 2018)


WHO Collaborating Centre on eHealth and underlying digital health R&D program

Professor Teng Liaw, Professor of General Practice and Director, WHO Collaborating Centre on eHealth, SPHCM, UNSW Sydney

Professor Teng Liaw speaks about the designation of the School of Public Health and  Community Medicine as a WHO Collaborating Centre on eHealth and a cluster digital health projects being conducted in the SPHCM, UNSW and partner organisations such as Primary Health Networks, Local Health Districts, government and non-government agencies.  <Download flyer>  (Presented: 23 May 2018)


Learning from using an appreciative inquiry (action research) approach to the study of nursing home life

Dr Natalie Yates-Bolton, Senior Lecturer in Nursing, University of Salford, UK

An appreciative inquiry (action research) approach was used to study how meaning and purpose in the lives of nursing home residents could be enhanced. A primary focus of the study was to optimise the participation of nursing home residents within the study as there was a lack of pro-active involvement of residents in previous studies. <Download flyer>  (Presented: 16 May 2018)


Moving from criminal justice to public health approaches to gun control in Australia; the challenges ahead

Samantha Lee, Lawyer, Chair of Gun Control Australia (GCA)

Australia’s gun laws were dramatically amended after Australia experienced the ‘worst lone gun massacre’ the world had seen at Port Arthur in Tasmania. The framework for this change was prevention before cure. It was a departure from the traditional “criminal justice” approach to gun control towards a “public health approach”. This talk examines why this “public health” model has been so beneficial to Australia, and the challenges ahead for preventing this model being undermined. <Download flyer>  (Presented: 11 April 2018)


Prevention is the best cure: Preventive lessons from historic misconduct by clinicians in New Zealand

Professor Kate Diesfeld, Chair of the Ethics Committee and Professor of Law at Auckland University of Technology

Many patients who file complaints regarding clinicians’ misconduct claim their primary goal is to protect future patients. In this spirit, a team of New Zealand researchers have researched who, what, where, when and how misconduct occurred. Due to New Zealand’s unique medico-legal system, the Health Practitioners Disciplinary Tribunal has significant relevance for patient safety. Also, for those who believe that physicians should heal themselves, further ballast is provided our research on how clinicians’ health impairments featured in disciplinary proceedings.  <Download flyer>  (Presented: 14 February 2018)


Strengthening and monitoring food policies to reduce chronic disease in the Pacific Islands

A/Prof Jacqui Webster (BA Sociology, MA Development Studies, PhD Public Health, RPHNut) is Head of Advocacy and Policy Impact in the Centre for Health Systems Research and Director of the World Health Organization Collaborating Centre on Population Salt Reduction at the George institute for Global Health

Discusses the results of an NHMRC-funded salt reduction intervention project in Fiji and Samoa. The project used a pre-post study design to evaluate the impact of multi-faceted population-wide interventions. Measurement of population salt intake and knowledge and behaviours around salt was integrated into the WHO’s STEPwise program for Noncommunicable disease risk factor surveillance at baseline.  <Download flyer>  (Presented: 12 July 2017)


A quick guide to working with climate data

James Goldie, PhD student, Climate Change Research Centre, UNSW Sydney

Weather observations and climate models are integral to many environmental health studies, but not all datasets are created equal. This talk introduces the variety of climate data available to researchers, from the satellite and weather station records covering our past to the climate models developed to gain insight into the future.  (Presented: 28 June 2017)


Interviewing sensitive populations – stories from a researcher

Dr Sarah Wayland, BSW, PhD (Health) is a qualitative research methodologist who has extensive experience in examining traumatic loss and mental illhealth within vulnerable populations

This seminar explores the experiences, challenges and benefits of working with vulnerable populations. It identifies the guest speakers’ lived experience in working with victims of crime, people living with complex mental health needs and in the justice health space.  <Download flyer>  (Presented: 21 June 2017)


Multi-method computational modelling to build evidence supporting planning, preparedness and decision making in high risk health protection, security and operational response contexts

Dr David Heslop, Associate Professor School of Public Health and Community Medicine UNSW Sydney, Senior Medical Adviser for CBRNE to Special Operations Headquarters Australia and to Australian Defence Force (ADF) joint senior leadership

In this talk recent developments in multi-method computational modelling approaches incorporating Agent Based Modelling coupled with Discrete Event and Systems Dynamics, supported by the recent increased availability of low cost high performance computing resources, will be discussed. How these can be used to answer questions about policies that cannot be easily investigated in real life will be discussed, using examples of current research projects at the SPHCM exploring how health systems and health policies perform under extreme conditions such as mass casualty events and mass contamination events.  <Download flyer>  (Presented: 31 May 2017)


Environmental and public health impacts of nuclear versus renewable energy: Deconstructing arguments and exposing subjective judgements

Dr Mark Diesendorf was Associate Professor in Interdisciplinary Environmental Studies, School of Biological, Earth & Environmental Sciences, UNSW Sydney

Public understanding and government policy on climate and energy policy is polarized. In the UK and several other countries nuclear and renewable energy are competing for providing the major part of the solution to the global climate crisis. This seminar will deconstruct the arguments of both sides in this debate, exposing the assumptions and subjective judgements of the contenders and the presenter. <Download flyer>  (Presented: 17 May 2017)