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Bringing Lived-Experience researchers from mental and physical health together

Lived-experience researchers from a range of backgrounds joined forces to present a Lived-Experience event at La Trobe University

Lived-experience researchers from a range of backgrounds (mental distress and personal recovery, physical disability and chronic illness, neurodiversity, caring and support) joined forces to present a Lived-Experience event at La Trobe University in October 2021. It was hoped that this event would highlight why working with consumers and the community is essential to great research.


The event included:

  • Keynote – Benefits and examples of consumer-led research and initiatives – speakers from the Victorian Mental Illness Council (VMIAC) – Tom Wood, Hamilton Kennedy and Pan Karanikolas
  • “You can’t ask that!” Lived-Experience researcher panel – Dr Rebecca Flower, Dr Ashley Ng, Dr Catherine Brasier from La Trobe University
  • Engaging consumers across various levels at the Centre for Health Communication and Participation – Louisa Walsh from La Trobe University
  • Community/consumer engagement in research and research impact – Research Theme Lead closing address – Prof Richard Gray from La Trobe University


The event was very well attended by La Trobe researchers who expressed great interest in how to better involve consumers and the community. Feedback and questions from researchers in the audience indicated that they face a number of barriers to conducting Lived-Experience and community-oriented research. For example, researchers expressed that they were not sure how to connect to consumers and community members. In practice, researchers often have few places to turn to improve their consumer and community engagement skills.


For more about Lived-Experience research support see

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