About the Research & Policy Centre

Knowledge, analysis and influence: these words capture the essence of the Research and Policy Centre’s work to identify and address poverty and social inequality in Australia. Building robust evidence is critical to this work.

Members of the RPC team discuss research in the office

We listen to people’s experiences of inequality and disadvantage, research the social and economic issues that affect them, evaluate services and propose policies to contribute to a more equitable and inclusive society. Our staff link robust research and policy approaches with the practice of our service delivery teams and insights from people’s everyday lives to produce analysis that will make a difference.

As the largest and oldest social policy research centre in a non-government welfare organisation in Australia, underpinned by a strong partnership with the University of Melbourne, we are well placed for this work.

Three ideas drive our research and policy efforts. First, we hold that social and economic inequality is not inevitable. It is the consequence of decisions made by governments, businesses, communities and individuals. Second, inequality does not just affect the unlucky minority. Rather, as a barrier to wealth generation and social cohesion it affects the country as a whole. Accordingly, investing in the potential of those who are most disadvantaged will reap long-term benefits for all. Finally, fostering the skills and capabilities of individuals and communities is vital to achieving a fairer society.

Our work focuses on:

Guiding values for our research

The Research and Policy Centre (RPC) is guided by the Brotherhood of St Laurence's vision of an Australia free of poverty, as well as its mission to research, develop and deliver innovative and high quality services, practices and policies to drive change that benefits all Australians.

Through our original, independent research and policy work the RPC promotes:

  • the common good
  • equity and fairness in Australian society
  • the dignity of all people.

We are committed to the development of knowledge and evidence that is:

  • ethical
  • robust
  • accessible to diverse audiences
  • independent but not neutral, as we stand with and for people and places experiencing poverty, inequity and social exclusion.

Research and Policy Centre

67 Brunswick Street
Fitzroy, Victoria 3065
Phone: (03) 9483 1183
Email: research(at)bsl.org.au

Read more:

Find out more about the work of the Brotherhood
Brotherhood Books
Brotherhood of St Laurence Communtiy Stores
Hippy Australia
Given the Chance

The Brotherhood of St Laurence acknowledges and recognises the Traditional Owners of the land upon which we live and work, and we pay our respects to their Elders both past and present.