The National Disability Research Partnership (NDRP), announced by the Hon. Stuart Robert MP, Minister for the National Disability Insurance Scheme and Minister for Government Services, and the Hon. Anne Ruston, Minister for Families and Social Services, brings together experts in disability policy and research to deliver a world-class disability research and policy hub. The Commonwealth Department of Social Services recognises the enormous opportunities presented by funding research in the establishment of NDRP and longer-term investment in disability research which will build knowledge, boost service innovation and solve pressing policy problems.

Griffith University is pleased to be part of this initiative, with Emeritus Prof Lesley Chenoweth and Prof Elizabeth Kendall, Executive Director The Hopkins Centre as members of the interim working party that will facilitate the establishment of the NDRP. The working party will promote activities of the NDRP, actively engage with key stakeholders to facilitate collaboration and guide the initial deliverables of a research agenda, governance model and demonstration projects.

Emeritus Prof Lesley Chenoweth AO, said “Griffith has a long history of disability research and teaching and we are pleased to be part of this important national research initiative. It is through collaborations with people with disabilities and families, researchers, Service providers and government that the most relevant and impactful research can achieve real and positive change”.

Professor Elizabeth Kendall, Executive Director, The Hopkins Centre is pleased to be part of the working party, “Griffith University is committed to accessibility and inclusion for people with disabilities, especially our own students. We provide excellent support to students who have a wide range of disabilities across all our courses”.

“At Griffith University we are committed to removing barriers that students with disabilities may face in higher education as well as improving employment outcomes for our students,” said Professor Kendall who also chairs the university Disability Advisory Committee.

“Our researchers have spent the last 30 years focused on finding better solutions to the complex challenges experienced by people with disabilities. We have a real commitment to interdisciplinary collaborative and responsive research that is embedded in practice and driven by people with disability. This partnership is an important opportunity to advance Australia’s capacity for research that can really make a difference”.

The Hopkins Centre Ambassador and adjunct Research Fellow, Dr. Dinesh Palipana OAM graduated from Griffith University with a medical degree and has become a successful public advocate for people with disability. He said, “The importance of initiatives such as the NDRP cannot be understated. These initiatives make sure we engage people with disability in the leadership and direction of research, which will change the way we do research and what we focus on.”

The NDRP will facilitate a collaborative, translational research program through partnerships between academics, people with disability, their families and carers, peak advocacy and consumer groups, governments and service providers to conduct cutting-edge policy-relevant research that enables people with disability to participate fully in society.

Next steps for the NDRP are to circulate an expression of interest for two experienced people with disability to join the working party, begin consulting on the governance structure for a fully-funded NDRP in two years’ time, release a research agenda tender and begin a communication strategy to engage with the disability community. All deliverables including the governance structure and research agenda will be shaped in partnership with the disability community.

If you are interested in being involved we would love to hear from you. Please visit