Australian Social Policy Conference

2023 Australian Social Policy Conference: Social Policy for Social Change

We are excited to announce that the 2023 Australian Social Policy Conference (ASPC) will be hosted by the Australian Social Policy Association and held at the Australian National University in Canberra.

When: Monday 11 September – Wednesday 13 September 2023

Where: The Australian National University

The conference will be an in-person event. The theme for ASPC 2023 is ‘Social Policy for Social Change’.

The Australian Social Policy Conference addresses the most pressing challenges facing Australian policy makers, practitioners and researchers. It provides a forum for leading national and international researchers and analysts from government and community social welfare sectors in Australia and internationally to present their research findings and debate their implications.

The Conference will feature keynote addresses from leading international and Australian scholars and a plenary panel of experts by experience. The program includes interactive discussions and plenty of opportunities to network. There will be a Conference Reception on the evening of Monday 11 September and a PhD Students Welcome Breakfast on Monday 11 September. The 2023 Annual General Meeting of the Australian Social Policy Association will be held during the conference.

Abstract submissions have now closed and all submitters have been notified of the outcome of their submission.

The program is now available - Program (

Registration will also include free membership to the Australian Social Policy Association for two years

Keynote Speakers Announced:

Professor Naomi Priest

Professor Priest’s broad research interest is to integrate social and epidemiologic methods to examine and address inequalities in health and development across populations and place and throughout the life course. This includes social epidemiology and qualitative research to understand differences in health and development experienced by children and youth from Indigenous backgrounds and from ethnic minorities, and explanations for observed differences across intersecting identities and experiences such as gender, socioeconomic position, and disability. Much of this work focuses on patterns, mechanisms and prospective influence of adverse early life exposures and stressors, including discrimination, stigma and bias.  

Professor Priest will be presenting on: Leveraging population data for precision policy to address social inequities

Inequality is a significant global and national issue, with data suggesting inequalities are continuing to widen. Childhood inequalities have lifelong social, education, economic and health impacts with evidence clear on the benefits of prevention and intervention early in life. However, there is an outstanding need for specific evidence for precision policy making to address child inequities and to identify optimal intervention targets. Leveraging existing population data spanning social and biological measures and using epidemiological and biostatistical innovations can provide rapid evidence to inform policy, particularly when trials are too slow, and/or not ethical or feasible. Drawing on empirical analyses using such data and methods, this presentation will discuss evidence regarding optimal intervention targets for addressing childhood inequalities and their drivers including childhood adversity, socioeconomic conditions and racism. 

Professor Lisa Scullion

Lisa is Professor of Social Policy and Co-Director of the Centre for Research on Inclusive Society at the University of Salford, UK. Lisa has delivered over 60 research projects, with a commitment to the importance of qualitative inquiry for shaping policy and practice. Lisa’s work focuses specifically on understanding the impact of UK welfare reforms. This includes leading a ground-breaking five-year study called Sanctions, Support & Service Leavers. This is the first in depth UK research to explore veterans’ experiences of the social security system and has been supporting the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) in developing their work related to the Armed Forces community. Lisa is a member of the Ministry of Defence Recovery Expert Advisory Board and the Office for Veterans Affairs Academic Advisory Board, and the FiMT Research Centre Advisory Board. From December 2021 to May 2023, Lisa undertook a part-time academic secondment to the DWP, where she supported capacity building of government social researchers within the DWP In House Research Unit. In recognition of her contribution to research and impact, she was conferred as a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in March 2022. 

Professor Scullion will be presenting on: Navigating the minefield: Veterans, trauma, and financial support systems in the UK  

 In recent years, there has been an increasing focus in the UK on the support provided to those who have served in the Armed Forces, with the publication of the Armed Forces Covenant (2011), the ten-year Strategy for our Veterans (2018) and the creation of the first ever Office for Veterans’ Affairs (2019). At the same time, the UK has witnessed a period of unprecedented welfare reform, with adequacy of payment levels, modes of implementation, and increased and intensified conditionality impacting on some of the most vulnerable in society. However, the significant changes in both ‘veterans support’ and ‘welfare reform’ have developed in parallel. This presentation reflects on experiences of leading a five-year research project that has helped to bridge these two parallel policy worlds, leading to significant policy and practice impact. The presentation will discuss how the project’s call for a trauma lens has influenced the integration of trauma-informed principles within government departments. Lisa will also reflect on her experiences as an academic working both with, and within, government to support evidence-based policy making in this area.

To register click here

Looking forward to seeing everyone in Canberra.

Kind regards

Dr Katie Curchin

Chair of Program Committee ASPC2023

Date & time

Mon 11 Sep 2023, 8.30am – Wed 13 Sep 2023, 4pm


25a Kingsley St, Acton ACT 2601


Professor Ray Lovett
Professor Lisa Scullion


Perri Chapman


Updated:  10 September 2023/Responsible Officer:  Centre Director/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications