Our Vision

Health for all

Our Mission

We influence, build, promote, and support advocacy for public health priorities through innovation in education, applied research, engagement and practice.

Our Approach

A critical friend, we support a collaborative, cooperative and coordinated approach to inspire action to improve public health in priority areas. Priorities are evidence-informed and demand driven. We plan the work and work the plan. Together with our partners, we advocate to inspire timely, appropriate, and ‘just’ public health impact.

PHAIWA was established in April 2008 by Professor Mike Daube as an independent public health voice based within Curtin University, with a range of funding partners.

The Institute aims to raise the public profile and understanding of public health, develop local networks and function as an umbrella organisation capable of influencing public health policy and political agendas.

PHAIWA focuses on a number of areas of public health advocacy ranging from providing general advocacy advice and strategies for public health, implementing unique advocacy related research and innovative projects, building capacity within the public health workforce to allow more effective advocacy lobbying and communicating through our partners and the media.

The Institute provides a range of diverse services, develops consensus based targets, conducts advocacy research and projects, builds capacity and mentors emerging leaders to be the advocates of tomorrow.

-Director A/Prof Christina Pollard



Download our Strategic Plan 2018 – 2022. 

Priority Areas

Aboriginal Health

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have significantly poorer health and lower life expectancy than other Australians.


Alcohol is a major public health issue. Harmful alcohol consumption contributes to a concerning range of immediate and longer-term harms, both as a result of a person’s own drinking and the drinking of others.


In Australia, one-quarter of children and adolescents are overweight or obese and nearly two-thirds of adults are overweight or obese, with the proportion of obese adults continuing to rise.

Child Health

Childhood is a period of rapid development and is formative for health and well-being and health behaviours throughout the life course (License 2004; Graham & Power 2004).

Environment and health

The environment influences human health in many ways — through exposures to physical, chemical and biological risk factors, and through related changes in behaviour in response to those factors.


Australia has the highest expenditure per capita on gambling, with 70% of Australians reporting participating in some form of gambling annually.

Industry strategies and tactics

If you are working in public health advocacy it is important to understand who your opponents are and what tactics they are using to gridlock advancement in public health.

Local Government

PHAIWA recognises that local governments are the closest form of government to communities and provide vital and multi-functional organisations within local communities.

Public Health Expenditure And Government Priorities

We try to identify priority areas where investments and commitments can be made to ensure the health and well-being of all Australians.

Our Team

A/Prof Christina Pollard


Dr Melissa Stoneham

Lead - #endingtrachoma

Nikki George

Administration/Project Officer

Melinda Edmunds

Senior Coordinator

Jo Malcolm

Senior Research Officer

Scott MacKenzie

Research Officer

Miika Coppard

Research Officer

Jessica Watts

Project Officer

Dr Simon Colquhoun

Research Officer

Dr Yesid Pineda-Molina

Research Officer

Emeritus Professor Mike Daube

PHAIWA Founding Director