Accessibility Tools

Lived Experience Research

— Involvement of First Nations People in Research

Milroy, H., Kashyap, S., Collova, J., Mitchell, M., Derry, K. L., Alexi, J., Chang, E. P., Dudgeon, P. 
Co-designing research with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander consumers of mental health services, mental health workers, elders and cultural healers. 
Australian Journal of Rural Health
30(6), 772-781. 
Full Text


The disparity in mental health outcomes compared with non-Indigenous Australians means that there is an urgent need to develop an evidence base around how services can better support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. A critical first step is to embed cultural safety into research methodologies.

Full Text


The Aboriginal and Islander Mental health initiative (AIMhi) at Menzies works with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander researchers, practitioners, organisations and communities to build resilience and address healing through strengths-based approaches to wellbeing and mental health promotion and treatment.

The Transforming Indigenous Mental Health and Wellbeing Research Program. 
Full Text


Our partners represent an ongoing collaborative of Aboriginal leaders and organisations, who are dedicated to creating long-term impact by bringing together their skills across community, academia, professional services, and national policy. The active and ongoing involvement of our dedicated Aboriginal-led collaborative ensures the research is designed, implemented and translated with cultural values and integrity in best responding to the needs of our communities.

National Health and Medical Research Council 
Keeping research on track II: a companion document to ethical conduct in research with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples and communities: guidelines for researchers and stakeholders. 
Canberra: NHMRC
Full Text


Over the years research has been undertaken into all aspects of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people’s lives. While some research has been beneficial in areas such as health, medicine, education and science, not all research has been of benefit. It is therefore important that appropriate processes are in place to ensure that research is considered, meaningful, ethical and beneficial to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and communities.

Bennett-Levy, J., Singer, J., Rotumah, D., Bernays, S., & Edwards, D. 
How Indigenous Community-Based Participatory Research Influenced the Australian Government’s Digital Mental Health Agenda. 
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
18(18), 9757. 
Full Text


This paper describes the first six years of a government-initiated project to train Indigenous health professionals in digital mental health (d-MH). It illustrates how community-based participatory research (CBPR) methods were used to enable this “top-down” project to be transformed into a ‘ground-up’ community-guided process; and how, in turn, the guidance from the local Indigenous community partners went on to influence the national government’s d-MH agenda.

Project Partners
National Mental Health Consumer & Carer Forum logo

Acknowledgement of Country

The National Mental Health Consumer and Carer Forum and the National Primary Health Network Mental Health Lived Experience Engagement Network acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the lands and waters on which we work and live on across Australia. We recognise their continuing connection to land, waters, culture and community. We pay our respects to Elders past and present.

Definition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Lived Experience

“A lived experience recognises the effects of ongoing negative historical impacts and or specific events on the social and emotional wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. It encompasses the cultural, spiritual, physical, emotional and mental wellbeing of the individual, family or community.

“People with lived or living experience of suicide are those who have experienced suicidal thoughts, survived a suicide attempt, cared for someone through a suicidal crisis, been bereaved by suicide or having a loved one who has died by suicide, acknowledging that this experience is significantly different and takes into consideration Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples ways of understanding social and emotional wellbeing.” - Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Lived Experience Centre

We welcome Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to this site and invite them to provide any feedback or items for inclusion.

Recognition of Lived Experience

We also recognise people with lived and living experience of mental ill-health and recovery and the experience of people who are carers, families, kin, or supporters.


Aboriginal flag
Torres Strait Islander flag
© Lived Experience Digital Library. All rights reserved.