Up to $200,000 is available from VicHealth Impact Research Grants to support projects that generate new and relevant evidence for direct application and impact on health promotion policy and practice.

 

VicHealth Impact Research Grants

The VicHealth Impact Research Grants will prioritise research projects that generate new and relevant evidence for direct application and impact on health promotion policy and practice in Victoria for optimal public benefit. Along with sound research design, grant applications will be required to demonstrate anticipated measurable impact and potential scalability of results to ensure meaningful impact.

 

Background

VicHealth is a pioneer in health promotion – the process of enabling people to increase control over and improve their health. The primary focus of VicHealth is promoting good health and preventing chronic disease. VicHealth’s current research aligns with the VicHealth Action Agenda for Health Promotion, which prioritises five areas for our work.

This new grant round titled ‘Impact Research Grants’ will replace VicHealth’s Innovation Research Grants.

The change from Innovation Research Grants to Impact Research Grants is in response to a 2018 review of VicHealth’s investment in research. As a result of the review, VicHealth’s future investment in research will have a greater focus on translational efficacy, and partnerships to improve the potential for impact and translation.

 

Funding

VicHealth will provide up to $200,000 over two years for each project. Up to five (5) projects may be funded in this round. VicHealth funding will commence in June 2019.

 

Research Priorities

To be considered for funding, research proposals must address one of the research priorities detailed below. Consideration of health equity in addressing these priorities will be viewed favourably.

Mental Wellbeing

  • Develop, trial and validate an evidence informed, co-designed digital approach that builds young people’s (aged 12-25 years) face-to-face social connections and enhances their mental wellbeing.
  • Undertake a robust independent evaluation of existing program(s) aimed at engaging men and boys in gender equality, particularly focusing on efforts to transform harmful gender stereotypes, masculinities and negative social norms, attitudes and behaviours.
  • Investigate or monitor policy change in relation to gender equality, to improve our understanding of the policy and other levers for creating social change towards gender equality or to track and demonstrate the impact of policy and legislation change in Victoria.

Healthy Eating

  • Develop, trial and validate an approach to engage with families to increase vegetable consumption among children aged 3-12 years.
  • Develop, trial and validate an approach to build capacity of the community to reduce junk food consumption in a local community.
  • Improve the understanding of the digital food environment (e.g. the rise of digital food delivery services, social media, reliance on convenience and fast food options) and how this is impacting dietary behaviours; and develop, trial and validate an approach which leads to healthier food choices in this environment.

Physical Activity

  • Improve the understanding of parental attitudes towards children’s physical activity and how this impacts children’s physical activity outcomes. With this knowledge, develop, trial and validate an approach to increase children’s physical activity outcomes by addressing parental attitudes.
  • Improve the understanding of people’s patterns of travel throughout the day and attitudes towards regular short active travel trips within a neighbourhood; and develop, trial and validate an approach to increase the number of regular short trips adopted within the neighbourhood.
  • Develop, trial and validate a local level approach to shift and change children’s leisure time to include more physical activity.

Alcohol

  • Develop, trial and validate an approach to reduce harm in localities and communities with high rates of alcohol-related harm. Applications with an academic and community/local partnership will be viewed favourably.
  • Improve the understanding of the demographic factors, normative beliefs and social and cultural markers of those groups who engage in risky drinking; and then test a tailored alcohol culture change intervention to reduce risky drinking.
  • Develop, trial and validate an approach to embed existing evidence-based alcohol brief interventions in primary or community care settings (e.g. primary care, community health, allied health), with a focus on the successful factors that contribute to practitioner uptake.

Tobacco

  • Develop, trial and validate an approach to support successful cessation attempts and prevent relapse among those with complex needs in healthcare settings.
  • Trial an enhancement to an existing smoking cessation support approach for the purpose of strengthening the effectiveness and/or the sustainability of the approach.
  • Develop, trial and validate an approach to prevent uptake and increase smoking cessation among Aboriginal Victorians.

Health Equity

  • Trial a knowledge exchange tool for the purpose of increasing the understanding of the social determinants of health and health equity for practical application in research and policy development.
  • Trial an approach that increases public awareness and knowledge of social determinants of health and health equity.

 

Eligibility

Applications must meet the following criteria:

  • The proposed project must address at least one of the research priorities identified by VicHealth
  • The project must be aligned with VicHealth’s health promotion focus of preventing chronic disease at a community or population level. Projects addressing disease treatment or management will not be considered.
  • VicHealth will look favourably on research proposals from teams that include PhD students or early career researchers as this will support the development of a workforce of researchers with applied ‘industry’ experience.
  • Applications that can demonstrate established partnerships with policy makers and/or practitioners will be considered favourably, but this is not mandatory. This will become mandatory in 2020 to be considered for funding.

Other criteria:

  • To ensure VicHealth funds impartial and high quality research free from real, potential or perceived conflicts of interest, all applicants are required to declare conflicts of interests when applying for research funding.
  • If a conflict of interest is declared, applicants are required to propose how the conflict will be managed so as to maintain confidence in the research.
  • A declared conflict of interest generally DOES NOT automatically preclude the applicant from being eligible for funding. VicHealth will assess all declared conflicts of interest on a case-by-case basis. However, VicHealth will not grant funding if any of the researchers are in or have been in receipt of:
    • any support from a tobacco company, the Australian Tobacco Research Foundation, or other like bodies. Note: e-cigarette companies, fully or partially owned by the tobacco industry, are also considered tobacco companies.
  • In the interests of equity, funding may be prioritised towards applicants who are not currently in receipt of VicHealth funding for any other project.
  • Please note, Research Officers, Research Assistants, and current PhD students cannot apply as a Chief Investigator for these grants.
  • Projects funded under this grant must be conducted in Victoria, and be about Victorians. The administering organisation may be based interstate.

 

Timing

Applications close 13 March 2019.

 

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