Faculty of Arts, Business, Law and Education


We discover and generate evidence and knowledge that matters. We are leaders in social impact knowledge generation and exchange. Our research focus areas include housing and homelessness; corporate social responsibility; the measurement of social outcomes and impact; service integration; capacity development in the social sector; and achieving social progress.

Bankwest Foundation Social Impact Series

The Bankwest Foundation and the University of Western Australia Centre for Social Impact (UWA CSI) have partnered to produce a five-year research program that aims to support the development and growth of the community sector in Western Australia. The research program focuses on the key themes of ‘Measuring outcomes in the Community Sector’ and ‘Improving the financial resilience of Social Enterprises’. Findings are translated and disseminated through a series of launch events and panel discussions, and in community and policy workshops. It has resulted in 8 research snapshot reports with related events, the development of a professional development course in outcomes measurement, and the development of an web-based reporting tool for social enterprises.

To find out more about the Professional Development in Outcomes Measurement, click here.

Download Report 1     Download Report 2     Download Report 3

Learning for Purpose: Researching & Realising Capability Development in the Not-for-Profit Sector

Led by CSI UWA researcher Ramon Wenzel, this is a ground breaking, national research program that investigates capacity building through professional development for the Australian Not-for-Profit (NFP) sector and work learning in the sector. The program’s aim is to systematically understand, evaluate, and improve the means through which individuals and organisations gain and sustain the key competencies for realising social change. The Learning for Purpose research program has resulted in an important publication on the Social Return of Education and Training, which demonstrated the effectiveness of NFP training programs and their economic impact. Partnerships with BHP Billiton Iron Ore, EY and Australian Research Council expand the reach of this program and its impact on the Australian NFP sector.

View the Report     Download the Highlights     Learn more

Couch Surfing Secondary Students (CSSS): Yarra Ranges Youth Homelessness Prevention Project

Authored by UWA CSI Director Paul Flatau, this study investigates the experiences of, and perceptions toward, couch surfing secondary students in the Yarra Ranges Shire. It seeks to provide evidence to better understand how to intervene earlier rather than later, and to ensure that services, like Anchor and OELLEN, are more able to effectively support the needs of schools who are at the ‘coalface’ of early stage homelessness in youth.

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The Cost of Youth Homelessness in Australia

UWA CSI Director Paul Flatau and Dr Monkica Thielking from Swinburne University authored the first national study of its kind, The Cost of Youth Homelessness in Australia, which reveals the extreme difficulties faced by homeless young people. Conducted to better understand the experience, impact and support needs of homeless youth, Swinburne University of Technology, in partnership with CSI at The University of Western Australia, Charles Sturt University, Salvation Army, Mission Australia and Anglicare NSW South and West, and ACT, led this landmark research project.

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From Homelessness to Sustained Housing

With researchers from The University of Western Sydney and UNSW Australia, CSI UWA’s Paul Flatau and Kaylene Zaretzky co-authored this study as part of Mission Australia’s Michael’s Intensive Supported Housing Accord (MISHA) Project. MISHA is a philanthropically funded initiative that provided long-term stable accommodation while supporting the men to build the lives they would like to live. The MISHA Project used a Housing First approach, which is about providing homeless people with immediate access to long-term, sustainable accommodation, rather than an initial stop-gap stay in a homeless shelter.

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Australia's social pulse

Currently in progress, this study is co-authored by CSI UWA Director Paul Flatau with Stephen Bennett, Rose Butler, Axelle Marjolin, Kristy Muir, Abigail Powell, Ioana Ramia, and Rebecca Reeve.

Australia’s social purpose sector lacks a cohesive, consistent and reliable source that tracks our social progress. Without this, we cannot determine whether the sector is succeeding in its goal to improve social outcomes. Nor can we evaluate whether our financial investments in social areas are achieving their aim of addressing complex social problems and strengthening society. Australia’s Social Pulse aims to respond to these gaps by providing rigorous measurement of the nation’s social progress.

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Centre for Social Impact

Centre for Social Impact UWA

Business School
M098, The University of Western Australia
35 Stirling Highway, Crawley WA 6009
Tel +61 8 6488 5691
Email csi-business@uwa.edu.au
Physical address: 39 Fairway, Crawley WA 6009
(former Oceans Institute on Edward St)