Research Success

Our research success fact sheets give an overview of research at the University. An archive of research success fact sheets is also available for 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, and 2005.

Low back pain – is it all in your brain? (PDF, 151.33 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Siobhan Schabrun of the School of Science and Health, together with an international team of researchers, has been awarded an NHMRC Project Grant to investigate how the brain is altered with persistent low back pain.  Members of the research team include Dr James McAuley, Neuroscience Research Australia, University of New South Wales; Professor Thomas Graven-Nielsen, Aalborg University Denmark; Professor Michael Nicholas, University of Sydney; Dr Nicholas Henschke, The George Institute for Global Health, University of Heidelberg and Dr Asad Khan, the University of Queensland.

Schabrun_low back pain 

What are the mechanisms of drought tolerance in plants? (PDF, 228.48 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Zhong-Hua Chen, of the School of Science and Health, has been awarded a prestigious Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Award (DECRA) to investigate the effects of drought on photosynthesis and stomatal behaviour of plants under stress.

Chen_drought tolerance 
Residential Property Investment (PDF, 256.21 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Graeme Newell and Dr Chyi Lin Lee of the School of Business, along with Dr Valerie Kupke of the University of South Australia are investigating ways to meet Australia's housing needs. This project is funded by the Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI).
Newall_property investment 
Protecting cotton from insect pest attack (PDF, 83.74 KB) (opens in a new window)
Associate Professor Robert Spooner-Hart, from the School of Science & Health, together with a team of researchers, has received funding to identify and develop novel botanical insecticides for use in the cotton industry. This 5-year project is being supported by the Cotton Research & Development Corporation (CRDC).
Spooner-hart_protecting cotton 
Platform Urbanism (PDF, 173.8 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Sarah Barns of the Institute for Culture and Society is examining the role of technology, government data and citizen participation as a platform for urban innovation and development. This project is funded by the Urban Studies Foundation through their Fellowship Postdoctoral Research Fellowship scheme.
Barns_platform urbanism 
Women's health after imprisonment (PDF, 80.26 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Penelope Abbott and Professors Wendy Hu and Parker Magin in the School of Medicine, have been awarded funding to investigate how women newly released from prison might have better access to primary health care. The project, which is supported by the RACGP Foundation (Royal Australian College of General Practitioners) Family Medical Care Education and Research Grant, aims to identify the barriers this vulnerable group faces in achieving something as routine and important as visiting a GP.
Abbott_women's health 
Changing Rights to Family Life (PDF, 404.39 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Sonja van Wichelen of the Institute for Culture and Society is examining how globalisation and biotechology affect Australian law and families. This project is funded by the Australian Research Council through its Discovery Early Career Researcher Award scheme.
Van Wichelen_family life 
Listening across languages (PDF, 170.97 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Anne Cutler from the MARCS Institute, University of Western Sydney, together with Dr Evelina Fedorenko, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, will investigate the native listening advantage: a native speaker's ability to recognise words in new voices and contexts faster than second language speakers.
The Australian Research Council is supporting Anne's research through its Discovery Projects scheme.
Listening across languages 

Turning young lives around (PDF, 130.16 KB) (opens in a new window)
Associate Professor Brian Stout of the School of Social Sciences and Psychology has been awarded funding to examine the success of a community-based intervention program for young offenders. The research, which is supported and funded by Juvenile Justice NSW, will examine the effect of the Intensive Supervision Program (ISP) on a young person's wider world: other family members, especially younger siblings, caregivers, peers and schools. With researcher Dr Ingrid Schraner, an economist, Dr Stout will also conduct an economic analysis of the initiative.

Stout_Turning young lives around 
Pentecostal Connections (PDF, 236.66 KB) (opens in a new window)
Australian Research Council Future Fellow, Dr Cristina Rocha of the Religion and Society Research Centre is examining how Pentecostal churches impact on the everyday lives of Brazilian international students and migrants in Australia. This project is funded by the Australian Research Council.
Rocha_pentecostal connections 
Working on better mental health (PDF, 142.91 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Vanessa Rose and Associate Professor Janette Perz from the Centre for Health Research have been awarded funding to continue work on measures to improve the mental health of young people who are unemployed. The study, which is supported by Australian Rotary Health, is part of a decade-long cognitive behaviour program called Walk the Talk. This phase will explore interventions among 17- to 25-year-olds who are out of work.
Rose_youth unemployment 
Getting down to grass roots (PDF, 253.49 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Scott Johnson and Dr Ben Moore from the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment have been awarded an Australian Research Council Discovery Projects grant to investigate the defence mechanisms of Australian grasses against invasive root herbivores. This project will also seek to understand how domesticated grasses differ from their wild ancestors in defence strategies.
Johnson_grass roots 
Clever thinking for student success (PDF, 86.41 KB) (opens in a new window)
Associate Professor David Cole, of the Centre for Educational Research, recently led a team that examined whether students who learn to think critically in years 11 and 12 become high achievers at university. With funding from the International Baccalaureate Organization, Associate Professor Cole investigated the experiences of more than 1300 IB students to determine what value they and their teachers placed on the diploma program's Theory of Knowledge course.A
Cole_clever thinking 
Getting to the root of the matter (PDF, 195.02 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Jeff Powell from the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment, has received funding from the ARC Discovery Projects program to identify plant and fungal traits that predict how mycorrhizal plants benefit under a variety of conditions. Dr Powell will be collaborating with Partner Investigator, Dr Matthias Rillig of the Free University of Berlin.
Powell_root of the matter 
"Home! Sweet Home!" (PDF, 241.27 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Mark Tjoelker of the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment has been awarded an ARC Discovery Project to investigate how thermal acclimation influences leaf and tree carbon exchange, and whether this depends upon a tree's "home" climate. The project team will include researchers from the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment; Dr Oula Ghannoum, Dr John Drake, Professor David Tissue and Professor Peter Reich.
Tjoelker_Home Sweet Home 
A nod to the wise in motherese (PDF, 302.98 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Christine Kitamura and Associate Professor Jeesun Kim of The MARCS Institute along with Dr Gerard Bailly from the National Organisation for Academic Scientific Research are investigating the contribution a speaker's head gestures and facial movements make to the way babies learn language. The project, which is supported by the Australian Research Council, will use the latest animation technology to clone a virtual "talking mother" with controllable features, to explore which visual signals are most important.
Kitamura_motherese v2 
Health care partners in Sydney's west (PDF, 192.06 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Jennifer Reath, Drs Penelope Burns, Ron Brooker and Penny Abbott from the School of Medicine, have been awarded funding to evaluate the partnership between the Medicare Local charged with developing primary health care for western Sydney and the Local Health District in the same area. The project, supported by WentWest (Western Sydney Medicare Local), will consider the impact of the partnership on health care provision for people in Auburn, Blacktown, Baulkham Hills, Holroyd and Parramatta local government areas.
Reath_healthcare partners 
Safe to the last drop (PDF, 143.92 KB) (opens in a new window)
Associate Professor Arumugam Sathasivan, from the School of Computing, Engineering and Mathematics, is investigating an early warning system to detect deterioration of drinking water in Sydney. The project, which is supported by UWS and Sydney Water, aims to detect microbiological changes to water in time to respond in a safe and cost-effective way.
Sathasivan_safe to the last drop 
Improving English Language skills (PDF, 228.32 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Jacqueline D'warte of the School of Educational is investigating how teachers can create opportunities for students to reveal the language and literacy skills they possess and  how to harness these for classroom learning. This project is funded by the Department of Education and Communities (DEC), New South Wales through its Multicultural Programs Unit.
D'warte_English language 
A narrative of self-determination (PDF, 74.95 KB) (opens in a new window)
Ms Alexis Wright, of the Writing and Society Research Centre, has been awarded a prestigious Discovery Indigenous Award to investigate the changing fortunes of Aboriginal storytelling in shaping Australia's indigenous policy landscape. The project is funded by the Australian Research Council. It will be conducted in collaboration with Aboriginal leader and thinker Tracker Tilmouth, from the Northern Territory, and Professor Ivor Indyk of the Writing and Society Research Centre, and aims to reassert the indigenous voice.
Wright_Tracker Tilmouth v2 
The best measure of health care (PDF, 78.5 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Louisa Jorm, from the Centre for Health Research in the School of Medicine, is leading a team investigating the best way to measure quality and affordability of primary health care in Australia. The complex collaboration, examining potentially preventable hospitalisations (PPH) and involving international research units and three partner agencies, is funded by the National Health and Medical Research Council.
Jorm_health care 
Help in bringing up baby (PDF, 86.51 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Hannah Dahlen and Professor Virginia Schmied of the Family & Community Health Research Group and Professor Cathrine Fowler at the University of Technology are investigating the links between complications and interventions in pregnancy and birth and the growing number of mothers seeking residential parenting services. The project, supported by the Australian Research Council in partnership with Karitane and Tresillian Family Care Centres, aims to undertake the first in-depth study of the women who use such care in the first year of their baby's life.
Dahlen_baby 
Resilience of Australian forests and woodlands to drought (PDF, 212.48 KB) (Opens in a new window)
Dr Brendan Choat of the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment has been awarded a prestigious Australian Research Council Future Fellowship. This project will examine the resilience of Australian forests and woodlands to drought and aims to develop new technology to improve remote measurement of plant water status for both natural and agriculture systems.
Choat_Australian Forests and drought 
When fire and water mix (PDF, 283.48 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor David Ellsworth, from the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment, is leading an investigation into how rising atmospheric CO2 concentration affects the relative abundance of grasses and shrubs in a woodland ecosystem. The Discovery Project, which is supported by the Australian Research Council, will particularly examine the links between CO2 and changes to soil water levels and fire risk.
Ellsworth_fire and water 
Protecting the nest egg (PDF, 91.25 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Phoebe Bailey, of the School of Social Sciences and Psychology, is leading a team investigating whether some older adults are more likely to be financially exploited because of changes in the way social and emotional cues are interpreted. The Australian Research Council project will test a novel strategy for gauging trust and detecting deception during financial negotiations.
Bailey_nest egg
Helping hand in cancer treatment (PDF, 94.47 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Kelvin Chan and Dr Valentina Naumovski from the National Institute of Complementary Medicine along with Dr Srinivas Nammi from the School of Science and Health are investigating how a traditional Chinese medicine, extracted from a mushroom, interacts with two common cancer drugs. The project, which is supported by UWS and PuraPharm Pty., Ltd., Australia, is part of a wider study to determine if the mushroom extract could be used as an adjunct therapy for cancer.
Chan_cancer treatment v2
Keeping information on track (PDF, 102.22 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Athula Ginige, from the School of Computing, Engineering and Mathematics, has been awarded funding by Transport for NSW to investigate new ways of creating, managing and accessing the huge bank of content needed to keep the state on the move. With co-researcher Dr Yogesh Deshpande, Professor Ginige will devise a system that will serve customers, contractors and employees.
Ginigie_keeping information
Waltz on, stay strong (PDF, 245.51 KB) (opens in a new window)
Associate Professor Dafna Merom, of the School of Science and Health, is leading a team that has been awarded funding to investigate whether dancing can prevent falls in older people. The project, supported by the National Health and Medical Research Council, will test the effectiveness of a 12-month program of folk and ballroom dancing in reducing the risk of falling and the physiological risks of falls.
Merom_waltz on v2
Speaking of babes and songbirds (PDF, 79.57 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Paola Escudero, of The MARCS Institute, is leading a multinational research team to investigate how human infants, human adults and songbirds crack the variability in the speech signal. The project, which is supported by the Australian Research Council, aims to unlock the secrets of speech comprehension, an important component of human thought.
 
A queer take on disaster response (PDF, 96.93 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Andrew Gorman-Murray, from the School of Social Sciences and Psychology, is leading an investigation into how sexual minorities fared during recent natural disasters in Australia and New Zealand. The project, which is supported by the Australian Research Council, will examine the vulnerability and resilience of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender/transsexual and intersex (LGBTI) communities.
 
Clinical Assessment underpins good healthcare (PDF, 92.4 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Wendy Hu from the School of Medicine is leading a team that is examining the healthcare settings of medicine, nursing, occupational therapy, physiotherapy and podiatry to assess workloads in clinical assessment of students. The project is supported by Health Workforce Australia, an Australian Government Initiative.
 
Private dollars for a public good (PDF, 94.05 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Phillip O'Neill, of the Urban Research Centre, is leading an international team investigating how private financing of public infrastructure projects is reshaping our cities. This Australian Research Council funded project, involving partner investigators from the Open University UK, aims to ascertain what influences are at work in reconciling society's desire for efficient and affordable roads, utilities and other public goods with the private sector's need to make a profit.
 
Making barley more tolerant to salt (PDF, 126.67 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Zhong-Hua Chen, of the School of Health and Science, has been awarded funding to investigate the genetic factors that would promote the successful farming of barley in saline soils. The project, which is supported by the 2013 Science and Innovation Awards, the Grains Research and Development Corporation and the Minster for Agriculture's Award, has implications for Australia's domestic and export barley crops, as well as for countries that struggle to grow barley in salt-affected soils.
Chen_Barley salt 
In pursuit of fungus-farming beetles (PDF, 378.54 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Markus Riegler and Dr Shannon Smith of the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment will lead a team of researchers investigating the scale of the threat posed by ambrosia beetles to commercial and native forests and orchards. The project is an international collaboration supported through funding from the Australian Government's Australian Biological Resources Study National Taxonomy Research Grant Program and will explore ambrosia beetle and associated microbial diversity to identify critical pests and pathogenic fungi and bacteria.
Riegler_fungal farmers 
A sporting chance for water supply (PDF, 113.27 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Basant Maheshwari, from the School of Science and Health, is investigating the harvesting of stormwater to replace potable water supply for irrigation of local sports grounds. The project, which is a partnership with Liverpool City Council, is also examining how to improve the water quality in Wattle Grove Lake where aquatic life is dying.
Maheshwari_water supply 
Respect and violence prevention with men and boys (PDF, 290.24 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Moira Carmody, Dr Michael Salter and Dr Geir Henning Presterudstuen of the School of Social Sciences and Psychology, have been awarded funding to investigate the best ways of engaging men and boys in measures to prevent domestic, family and sexual violence. The year-long project, supported by the NSW Department of Family and Community Services, will evaluate world's best practice in violence prevention.
Carmody_respect and violence 
Medical Educators: The Missing Pipeline (PDF, 290.7 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Wendy Hu from the School of Medicine, Dr Gisselle Gallego from the Centre for Health Research, Professor Jill Thistlethwaite (University of Queensland), Associate Professor Jennifer Weller (University of Auckland) and Professor Geoff McColl (University of Melbourne) are investigating gaps in the medical educator workforce for educating tomorrow's doctors. The project is supported by Medical Deans Australia and New Zealand Inc.
Hu_Medical educators 
Policing for all the community (PDF, 102.81 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Michael Kennedy, of the School of Social Sciences and Psychology, is investigating the strength of partnerships forged between police and Sydney's Muslim community. With funding from the NSW Police force, Dr Kennedy will particularly look at how such relationships are tested by controversial events, such as in September 2012 when there were protests over a video that ridiculed the Prophet Mohammed.
Kennedy_policing_community 
Swell idea for marine construction (PDF, 80.74 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Chunwei Zhang, from the Institute for Infrastructure Engineering, is leading an investigation into ways of limiting the effects of a heaving motion on the work of offshore crane ships. The project, which is supported by a UWS Research Partnership Grant and Tianjin Haixu Technology Development Co, aims at improving the safety and reliability involved in a crucial aspect of gas and oil exploration. Dr Zhang's research team includes Professor Brian Uy from UNSW and Dr Won Hee Kang from UWS.
Zhang_marine construction 
Riegler_co-evolutionary addiction (PDF, 179.24 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Markus Riegler, of the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment, is leading a research team to investigate what happens when insects and bacteria get together for their mutual benefit. This research is supported by funds from the Hermon Slade Foundation.
Riegler_co-evolutionary addiction 
Digging the dirt on carbon storage (PDF, 278.9 KB) (opens in a new window)
Associate Professor Brajesh Singh and Professor Ian Anderson of the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment, have been awarded funding to investigate the farming practices and soil conditions that will improve carbon storage in arable land. The project, which is supported by the Grains Research and Development Corporation, anticipates environmental, economic and social benefits in this important sector of Australian agriculture.
Singh_dirt_carbon storage 
Fibres to weather a hotter, drier future (PDF, 84.26 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Robert Sharwood, a postdoctoral fellow at the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment, has received funding to investigate how cotton, one of Australia's most significant agricultural exports, can better cope with hotter and drier growing conditions. The project is supported by the federal Department of Agriculture and the Cotton Research and Development Corporation in collaboration with the CSIRO in Narrabri. It seeks to understand the underlying physiology of cotton to assist in developing more resilient varieties and crop management systems.
Sharwood_fibres_drier 
Justice without prejudice (PDF, 89.31 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor David Tait and Dr Meredith Rossner of the Justice Research Group, together with Professor Rick Sarre of the University of South Australia, Dr Blake McKimmie of the University of Queensland, Dr Emma Rowden of the University of Technology Sydney and Associate Professor Mary Rose of the University of Texas as well as Industry Partners* are investigating how courtroom design influences the chances of getting a fair trial. This project is funded by the industry partners and the Australian Research Council through its Linkage Projects grant scheme.
Tait_justice without Prejudice v1 
Young People and technology (PDF, 242.1 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Amanda Third of the Institute for Culture and Society is examining issues regarding young people and their wellbeing through technology use. This project is funded by the Australian Research Council through its Linkage grant scheme in collaboration with seven industry partners
Third_young people
When algebra meets biology (PDF, 90.09 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Andrew Francis, from the Centre for Research in Mathematics within the School of Computing, Engineering and Mathematics, is leading an investigation into how algebra might be used to better explain the progress of evolution in bacteria. The project, which is supported by the Australian Research Council Discovery Project, aims to develop new algorithms for the modelling of evolutionary processes. His fellow chief investigator is Associate Professor Volker Gebhardt.
When algebra meets biology 

I say bears, you say beers (PDF, 831.89 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Catherine Best and Dr Jason Shaw from The MARCS Institute and the School of Humanities and Languages, Dr Bronwen Evans from University College London, Professor Jennifer Hay from the University of Canterbury NZ, Professor Gerard Docherty from Griffith University and Professor Paul Foulkes from the University of York are exploring how we recognise spoken words and understand their meaning when their pronunciation varies wildly from one part of the world to another. This Australian Research Council Discovery project will highlight the problems posed by unfamiliar accents for those learning English as a second language or who have language impairments, and the difficulties regional accents pose for speech recognition technology.

I say bears, you say beers
Young and Healthy (PDF, 464.85 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Ann Dadich, Dr Daniela Spanjaard, Dr Francine Garlin and Dr Nicole Stegemann of the School of Business along with Ms Vanessa Rock, Ms Sofia Potente and Ms Emma Fitzgerald of Cancer Council NSW (CCNSW) are implementing a feasibility study of research methods to examine healthy lifestyle choices among young people. This project is funded by the UWS Research Partnerships Program and CCNSW.
Young and Healthy
Into the mouths of babes (PDF, 744.24 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Ajesh George from the School of Nursing and Midwifery is leading a team that has been awarded funding to conduct a Sydney-wide trial of dental services initiated by midwives. This National Health and Medical Research Council project will assess an innovative program to improve the oral health of women and babies.
Into the mouths of babes
What pain does to the body (PDF, 412.14 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Vaughan Macefield from the School of Medicine is leading research with Dr Ingvars Birznieks to investigate the physiological changes caused by long-term pain. This project is being supported by a grant from the National Health and Medical Research Council.
What pain does to the body
It's a thin line between envy and pride (PDF, 1854.91 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Rebecca Pinkus, of the School of Social Sciences and Psychology, will lead a team of researchers to investigate how relationships weather the comparisons partners make with each other and with other couples. The project, which is funded by the Australian Research Council, will identify factors that promote healthy relationships - a cornerstone of wellbeing.
It's a thin line between envy and pride

The ABC of golf, in an ecofriendly way (PDF, 2482.92 KB) (opens in a new window)
Associate Professor Sally Power, from the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment, has been awarded funding to lead a team investigating the environmental value of golf courses within the local landscape. The project, which is supported by the Greater Sydney Local Land Services (GSLLS) through funding from the Australian Government, will assess levels of biodiversity and carbon sequestration.

The ABC of golf, in an ecofriendly way
A frog's place makes an ideal classroom (PDF, 354.55 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Margaret Somerville, from the Centre for Educational Research (CER), has been awarded funding to investigate how a hands-on wetlands project, studying frogs, birds, weeds and water quality, might foster school children's interest in caring for their local environment. The study, funded by AGL Upstream Investments, will also help to prepare teachers for the introduction of sustainability as a classroom focus.
A frog's place makes an ideal classroom 
A historical role for grammar (PDF, 2602.39 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Robert Mailhammer, of the School of Humanities and Communication Arts, has been awarded funding to investigate how Indigenous languages have shaped Aboriginal English. The project, which is supported by the Australian Research Council's Discovery Projects Scheme, has a particular sense of urgency because only a small number of older speakers who exhibit Indigenous language influences are still alive and healthy enough for the stresses of linguistic work.
Historical-role-for-grammar
Gauging a good night's sleep (PDF, 1868.01 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Philip de Chazal, from the MARCS Institute, has been awarded funding to investigate more accurate, less invasive ways of monitoring sleep. By advancing the important field of sleep monitoring, this Australian Research Council project will contribute to better care for people living with sleep issues.
Gauging-a-good-nights-sleep
Eye research part of a bigger picture (PDF, 1748.18 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Morven Cameron, from the School of Medicine, has been awarded funding to investigate how the connections between neurons in the retina are altered in response to changes in light levels over the course of the day. The project, funded by the Australian Research Council (ARC), will extend the existing understanding of retinal physiology, providing an invaluable resource for strategies aimed at restoring vision to those with retinal degeneration.
Eye research
A vicious cycle of push and pull (PDF, 233.24 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Elizabeth Conroy, of the Centre for Health Research, will be investigating if a program to arrest the drift of homeless people from Sydney's greater west to the inner city has been successful. This study has been awarded funding by Mission Australia.
Inner city
Translating Policy to Practice (PDF, 183.34 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Ann Dadich of the School of Business and Associate Professor Brian Stout of the School of Social Sciences and Psychology are developing an evaluation framework to determine the effectiveness of the Detainee Behaviour Intervention Framework (DBIF), developed by Juvenile Justice NSW. This project is funded by the NSW Department of Attorney General and Justice, Juvenile Justice.
Translating Policy to Practice
Why walk when you can dance? (PDF, 196.77 KB) (opens in a new window)
Associate Professor Dafna Merom, of the School of Science and Health will be investigating social dancing as a weapon against dementia and cognitive decline. The research, which is supported by the IRT Research Foundation, will explore the notion that the multi-dimensional nature of dancing makes it a better activity than walking for keeping the ageing brain healthy.
The dancing mind
Stubbing out a mother's health risk (PDF, 1763.55 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Alys Havard, Professor Louisa Jorm and Ms Deborah Randall from the Centre for Health Research along with Associate Professor David Preen, Dr Anna Kemp and Dr Kristjana Einarsdottir from the University of Western Australia and Professor Michael Daube from Curtin University are investigating the safety of medications for quitting smoking during pregnancy. This National Health and Medical Research Council project also explores inequities in the use and effectiveness of such medicines, both before and during pregnancy, among disadvantaged communities, notably Aboriginal women, and any role played by changes in public policy.
Stubbing out a mothers health risk
Listen carefully, one syllable at a time (PDF, 206.06 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Jason Shaw, of the MARCS Institute, has been awarded funding to investigate the cognitive mechanisms that underpin the human ability to recognise both words and talkers in speech. The project, which is supported by an Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Researcher Award, will produce a blueprint for technologies that integrate speech recognition with talker recognition.
Who is talking
The heat is on the red bloodwood (PDF, 156.47 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Paul Rymer, of the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment, has been awarded funding to explore how plants might respond to the heat of climate change. The project, which is supported by the University of Western Sydney in partnership with Western Australia's Department of Parks and Wildlife (DPaW), will test the physiological and genetic mechanisms enabling plants to withstand global warming and heat waves.
The heat is on the red bloodwood
Early warning of preeclampsia (PDF, 485.75 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Annemarie Hennessy and Dr Angela Makris, from the School of Medicine along with Professor William Price from the School of Science and Health, are investigating blood pressure control in preeclampsia. This National Health and Medical Research Council project explores links between an expectant mother's immune responses and the health of her placenta, and her high blood pressure.
Early warning of preeclampsia
Mummy, that lady talks funny (PDF, 208.39 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Catherine Best of the MARCS Institute and Dr Christine Kitamura from the School of Social Science and Psychology are investigating the role of accents in word learning among young children. The study, funded by the Australian Research Council Discovery Project, may shed light on the particular problems faced by children with developmental language difficulties.
Mummy, that lady talks funny
Chinese herbs and vascular dementia (PDF, 2841.35 KB) (opens in a new window)
Associate Professor Dennis Chang and Professor Alan Bensoussan from the National Institute of Complementary Medicine are investigating the use of a standardised Chinese herbal medicine formula to treat vascular dementia. The project, which is funded by Australia Shineway Technology Pty. Ltd., comes after a series of preclinical and clinical investigations which showed encouraging results.
Chinese herbs and vascular dementia
One stop for cancer care (PDF, 1807.26 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Joanne Curry, with Dr Ante Prodan and Professor Anneke Fitzgerald, is researching ways to ensure patients at a new integrated cancer centre move smoothly from one specialist service to the next. Funding for the project comes from Hunter New England Local Health District, which is establishing the North West Cancer Centre in Tamworth.
One stop for cancer care
Sex after cancer: the hidden population (PDF, 2619.15 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Jane Ussher and Associate Professor Janette Perz from the Centre for HealthResearch, along with Professor Suzanne Chambers from Griffith University and Associate Professor Ian Latini from Baylor College of Medicine have been awarded Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia funding to investigate sexual wellbeing and quality of life among gay and bisexual men who have had prostate cancer. The project will address the imbalance that has seen previous research in this field concentrated on heterosexual men.
Sex after cancer the hidden population
Infertility after cancer doubles the pain (PDF, 505 KB) (opens in a new window)
Professor Jane Ussher and Associate Professor Janette Perz from the Centre for Health Research and Dr Emilee Gilbert, from the School of Social Sciences & Psychology are leading a team of researchers to study fertility after treatment for cancer from the perspective of patients, their partners and health professionals. This Australian Research Council Linkage project will be conducted with partners CanTeen, Cancer Council NSW, Family Planning NSW, National Breast Cancer Foundation, Nepean Hospital and Westmead Hospital with the aim of increasing knowledge of this important health issue and helping to develop programs to reduce distress.
Infertility after cancer doubles the pain
Horsing around? Not with Hendra virus risk management (PDF, 2719.02 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Melanie Taylor from the Centre for Health Research, Drs Navneet Dhand and Jenny-Ann Toribio from the University of Sydney, Drs Nina Kung and Hume Field from Queensland Centre for Emerging Infectious Diseases and Dr Barbara Moloney and Dr Therese Wright from the NSW Department of Primary Industries are undertaking a three-year research project to investigate the knowledge, attitudes and biosecurity practices of horse owners in relation to Hendra virus. This multidisciplinary project is part of the National Hendra Virus Research Program which is funded by the Commonwealth of Australia and the States of New South Wales and Queensland. The project is contracted by the Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation.
Horsing around
Unravelling changes in soil function (PDF, 2729.92 KB) (opens in a new window)
Associate Professor Brajesh Singh and Professor Peter Reich of the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment at the University of Western Sydney have been awarded an ARC Discovery Project grant to examine the microbial regulation of soil functions.
Unravelling changes in soil function
Bugs that ate a fragile woodland (PDF, 157.36 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Markus Riegler, of the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment, will lead a team of  researchers investigating what is killing Grey Box eucalypts on the Cumberland Plain in Western Sydney. The project, which has been assisted by the New South Wales Government through its Environmental Trust and in partnership with the Royal Botanic Gardens and Domain Trust, aims to develop measures to try to conserve this once dominant tree species.
Bugs that ate a fragile woodland
Grassland pests the root of the problem (PDF, 2647.94 KB) (opens in a new window)
Associate Professor Sally Power and Dr Scott Johnson, of the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment, have been awarded funding to investigate the effect of erratic rainfall on Australia's important but dwindling grasslands. The project, which is supported by the Hermon Slade Foundation, will particularly look at the role of below-ground insect pests under differing rainfall regimes.
Grassland pests the root of the problem
Fast, efficient goods shipment (PDF, 429.78 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Henry Lau and Dr Dilupa Nakandala of the School of Business with Professor Sven Axsater of Lund University Sweden are developing a mathematical decision-making model to assist best-practice in supply chain operations for
businesses. This project is funded by the Australian Research Council through its Discovery Projects grant scheme.
Fast, efficient goods shipping
Sound selection above the din (PDF, 2515.56 KB) (opens in a new window)
Associate Professor Jeesun Kim and Professor Christopher Davis from the MARCS Institute along with Professor Martin Cooke from Basque Foundation for Science are undertaking an investigation into speech recognition in noisy situations. The interdisciplinary project, which is supported by the Australian Research Council
Discovery Project, will involve collaboration between human and machine speech
recognition researchers, combining signal processing and cognition.
Sound selection above the din
Young women and cigarettes (PDF, 2507.97 KB) (opens in a new window)
Dr Emilee Gilbert, from the School of Social Sciences and Psychology and the Centre for Health Research, is leading an investigation into why young women smoke despite knowing the serious health risks. The project, which is supported by the Australian Research Council Discovery Project, aims to increase understanding of why young women are resistant to the anti-smoking message. The other investigators are Professor Jane Ussher and Associate Professor Janette Perz.
Gilbert_young women