Understanding the role of police in regional Australia

Understanding the role and remit of police in regional Australia: A Tasmanian case study

Degree type


Closing date

18 July 2022



Citizenship requirement


About the research project

Too often we assume to know what police do; yet, to date, there has been no Australian research undertaken to map exactly what police do in their everyday duties. While Tasmania Police officers are compelled by the Tasmanian Government to undertake the core tasks of criminal investigation, public order maintenance, emergency management, and traffic policing, anecdotal evidence suggests that they do much more, and many of these non-core duties may be more appropriately assigned to other frontline services. These secondary tasks are often undertaken by police with limited training and resourcing, and with limited consideration of the vicarious trauma and mental fatigue associated with this work. In this collaborative project between the Tasmanian Institute of Law Enforcement Studies, The Police Association of Tasmania, and Tasmania Police, candidates will work closely with frontline police to map their duties, investigate the wellbeing of officers, and to consider what, if any, solutions can be offered to redirect tasks that are better addressed by community organisations, businesses, and other public servants.

Primary Supervisor

Meet Prof Nicole Asquith


Applicants will be considered for a Research Training Program (RTP) scholarship or Tasmania Graduate Research Scholarship (TGRS) which, if successful, provides:

  • a living allowance stipend of $28,854 per annum (2022 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.

As part of the application process you may indicate if you do not wish to be considered for scholarship funding.


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

Applicants from the following disciplines are encouraged to apply:

  • Criminology
  • Policing
  • Sociology

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 desirable selection criteria specific to this project:

  • Experience working with, or for, policing organisations, and/or capacity and willingness to work respectfully alongside police, will be an advantage

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, Prof Nicole Asquith 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.

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