HDR Scholarship - Leverage points and strategies for implementation and scale-up

Applications now open. A PhD scholarship is available to initiate and conduct research on the topic 'Leverage points and strategies for implementation and scale-up'.

Project Supervisor


Melbourne Burwood Campus

Research topic

Successful scale-up of public health interventions is essential to equitable and sustainable population health improvement. Scaling up is, however, a lengthy, complex and dynamic process, influenced heavily by contextual and setting-specific factors that impact community-level adoption, delivery and sustainability. For physical activity and nutrition, research has shown that an ideal context for scaling up an intervention can improve initial uptake, however, it does not necessarily mean the intervention is sustainably implemented at scale, thus leading to the desired long-term health benefits. We lack an understanding of how to identify strategies, mechanisms (which are causal pathways explaining how strategies work to achieve desired outcomes) and leverage points (places to intervene in a system) to improve scale-up outcomes.

This PhD will use data from physical activity and nutrition interventions currently being implemented in Australia by academics in partnership with governments. This PhD will also provide the opportunity to collect new data and collaborate internationally.

Project aim

To identify leverage points and strategies that relate to, and may enhance, implementation and scale-up of physical activity and nutrition interventions population wide. The project will also lead to the development of an evidence-based resource on leverage points and strategies that can assist others wishing to scale public health interventions in the future.

Important dates

Applications  will remain open until a candidate has been appointed


This scholarship is available over 3 years.

  • Stipend of $33,500 per annum tax exempt (2022 rate)
  • Relocation allowance of $500-1500 (for single to family) for students moving from interstate
  • International students only:  Tuition fees offset for the duration of 4 years. Single Overseas Student Health Cover policy for the duration of the student visa.

Eligibility criteria

To be eligible you must:

  • be either a domestic or international candidate. Domestic includes candidates with Australian Citizenship, Australian Permanent Residency or New Zealand Citizenship.
  • meet Deakin's PhD entry requirements
  • be enrolling full time and hold an honours degree (first class) or an equivalent standard master's degree with a substantial research component.

Please refer to the research degree entry pathways page for further information.

Additional desirable criteria include:

  • hold a Bachelor’s degree with Honours or a Master’s degree with a substantial research component, or equivalent, in education, health promotion, implementation science, public health or exercise science
  • experience in quantitative and qualitative methodology
  • fluency in English, highly motivated and able to work in a multidisciplinary team
  • previous research or practice-based experience in the education system, intervention implementation/evaluation, systems approaches and/or health policy is desirable but not essential.

How to apply

Please apply using the Find a Research Supervisor tool


Contact us

For more information about this scholarship, please contact Dr Harriet Koorts

Dr Harriet Koorts
Email Dr Harriet Koorts
+61 3 9244 6685