A public health approach to Dementia

Improving awareness and reducing risk of dementia through a public health approach

Degree type


Closing date

27 March 2023



Citizenship requirement



$31,500pa for 3.5 years

About the research project

Risk factors for dementia, including smoking, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, high cholesterol, obesity, physical inactivity, and low levels of educational attainment are prevalent in Australia, as are low levels of health literacy. Tasmania is also the oldest and among the fastest ageing population in the country. Without intervention, Tasmania will face a surge in dementia cases over the coming decades as the population ages particularly in at risk communities. Dementia incidence could be reduced by up to 40% by introducing health and lifestyle changes to reduce risk including more effective management of existing health conditions, improving diet and regular exercise, and maintaining social connections and lifelong learning. As dementia risk factors overlap with other chronic conditions, this would improve overall health and wellbeing. Public health strategies are needed to help Australians reduce their dementia risk. For any public health approach to be effective, it must reach the most at-risk members of the community including those from culturally and linguistically diverse groups, however many public health campaigns reach only those with sufficient literacy to engage. This project will explore public health approaches to dementia, particularly approaches to encourage reductions in linked risk factors.

Primary Supervisor

Meet Dr Kathleen Doherty


The successful applicant will receive a scholarship which provides:

  • a living allowance stipend of $31,500 per annum (2023 rate, indexed annually) for 3.5 years
  • a relocation allowance of up to $2,000
  • a tuition fees offset covering the cost of tuition fees for up to four years (domestic applicants only)

If successful, international applicants will receive a University of Tasmania Fees Offset for up to four years.


Applicants should review the Higher Degree by Research minimum entry requirements.

Additional eligibility criteria specific to this project/scholarship:

  • Applicants must be able to undertake the project on-campus

Selection Criteria

The project is competitively assessed and awarded.  Selection is based on academic merit and suitability to the project as determined by the College.

Additional essential selection criteria specific to this project:

  • Honours degree or equivalent in Health-related discipline

Additional desirable selection criteria specific to this project:

  • Knowledge of qualitative and quantitative methodologies

Application process

There is a three-step application process:

  1. Select your project, and check you meet the eligibility and selection criteria;
  2. Contact the Primary Supervisor, Dr Kathleen Doherty to discuss your suitability and the project's requirements; and
  3. Submit an application by the closing date listed above.
    • Copy and paste the title of the project from this advertisement into your application. If you don’t correctly do this your application may be rejected.
    • As part of your application, you will be required to submit a covering letter, a CV including 2 x referees and your project research proposal.

Following the application closing date applications will be assessed within the College. Applicants should expect to receive notification of the outcome by email by the advertised outcome date.

Apply now Explore other projects

Why the University of Tasmania?

Worldwide reputation for research excellence

Quality supervision and support

Tasmania offers a unique study lifestyle experience