Research approach

Policy Development Research

It is the applied, policy focussed nature of research funded by the NHRP that differentiates it from other sources of research funding. The Policy Development Research Model facilitates engagement between the research and policy communities.

Policy Development Research integrates the traditionally separate processes of evidence building and policy development into one set of practices.

Policy development research demands a high degree of collaboration within and between the research communities and the policy and practice community. This occurs through an AHURI Inquiry, which is established to address a priority policy issue or a Research Project which involves the conduct of research on a contained research topic.

Each Inquiry is guided by a panel of experts, who are informed by the integrated suite of supporting research projects. These supporting research projects build the knowledge and ideas critical to addressing the policy question.

Fig 1. Inquiry process

Fig 2: Inquiry panel

AHURI funds a variety of research using a range of methods, from broad exploratory analysis of emerging issues through to evaluative research around current policy.

AHURI funds research that:

  • draws on different disciplines, including economic, geographic, sociological, anthropological and architectural perspectives
  • utilises a range of data sources, including government administrative data, secondary survey data, investigator initiated surveys, focus groups, informant interviews and stakeholder workshops
  • uses innovative analytical methods, including statistical modelling, qualitative analysis and natural experiments
  • uses data sourced from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, the Australian Bureau of Statistics, AURIN and longitudinal data sets such as the Housing, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia survey and Journeys Home: Longitudinal Study of Factors Affecting Housing Stability.

Indigenous housing research is a strategic priority. AHURI maintains the principle that all funded research should include an Indigenous focus. Funding applications that do not include an Indigenous focus must provide a compelling justification for not including an Indigenous focus.

Setting the agenda

The AHURI National Housing Research Program (NHRP) Research Agenda is developed in consultation with key stakeholders.

The process is initiated with a workshop with the AHURI Research Centre Directors. Government stakeholders are consulted and outcomes are brought to the NHRP Research Panel for discussion and then taken to the AHURI Limited Board.

The AHURI Symposium of Housing Chief Executives finalise the research priorities. This Symposium brings together the Chief Executives of Housing from each State and Territory, and senior representation from the Commonwealth Government, to highlight progress on funded AHURI Inquiries, and to shape priorities for housing policy development in Australia.

The AHURI Limited Board approve the Research Agenda for the launch of  the NHRP Funding Round.