Capacity Building for Care Research (CBCR) Program

Project Investigators Prof. Elizabeth Beattie, Dr. Catherine Travers, Dr. Elaine Fielding, Professor Lindy Clemson


Program Overview:

The CBCR Program aims to develop the research capacity of Australian dementia care researchers in nursing and allied health disciplines. It was developed to redress the limited capacity of academics from these disciplines to undertake high quality dementia care research in Australia and become research leaders and lead innovative research in this area.

An Expert Advisory Group including leading dementia care researchers informed program development. Thirteen early-mid career researchers in dementia care from nursing and allied health disciplines enrolled in the program in 2019 and are referred to as Fellows. Each Fellow was matched with a suitable Mentor (a senior Research Academic) based on their research interests and foci. Both Fellows and Mentors were inducted into the program and each Fellow has developed an Individual Development Plan. All dyads meet (virtually) on a regular basis and connections have been made to facilitate the inclusion of Fellows on large research grants.

Fortnightly education and training sessions are provided for Fellows via Zoom to ensure they have the requisite knowledge and skills to become successful researchers and research leaders. Experts present on topics including writing skills, time management and involving consumers in dementia care research.

The program is being evaluated for effectiveness, professional outcomes and cost.

For further information, please contact either Elaine Fielding or Dr Catherine Travers.



Meet the Team

Dr. Christine While

Research Fellow, Australian Centre for Evidence Based Aged Care, La Trobe University


Dr Christine While is a registered psychiatric nurse with extensive experience in caring for  people with dementia and older adults with mental illness in the community. Christine’s research interest grew out of out of her clinical background and informed her recently completed PhD which explored the impact of community [...]

Dr. Maria O'Reilly

Senior Lecturer, School of Health, Medical and Applied Sciences,  CQUniversity, Bundaberg


Dr Maria O’Reilly is an Occupational Therapist with over 30 years’ experience as a clinician, educator and researcher. Her research interests include residential aged care, quality of life, rural health, and living well with dementia. She is currently leading a program of research on dementia-inclusive travel, which has resulted in [...]

Prof. Elizabeth Beattie

Director - QUT Hub


Professor Beattie’s primary research interests lie in the area of the prevention of negative functional outcomes of behavioural issues in dementia, specifically elopement, getting lost, fatigue and nutritional issues, and in ethical issues related to decisional incapacity. She is passionate about helping young scholars develop knowledge and skills in [...]

Dr. Erin Conway

Senior Lecturer – Speech Pathology, School of Allied Health, Australian Catholic University

Dr Erin Conway’s research interests and expertise relate to communication changes experienced by people with dementia, and the evaluation of treatments that aim to improve communication for people with dementia. Her research ultimately aims to improve access to evidence-based speech pathology services that will support communication for people with [...]

Dr. Margie MacAndrew

Lecturer,  School of Nursing, Queensland University of Technology


Dr MacAndrew is a registered nurse with experience in caring for people with dementia in long term care and her research interests focus on improving quality of life and care for people with dementia who wander. She has trialled two behavioural interventions that aimed to reduce risky aspects of wandering [...]

Dr. Claudia Meyer

Research Fellow, Bolton Clarke Research Institute, Melbourne


Dr Claudia Meyer combines her skills as an experienced physiotherapist with her research expertise, moving research into action for community-dwelling older people and their carers. Her research interests include the translation of falls prevention knowledge for people with dementia and their carers in the Australian community care context, equity in [...]

Dr. Kasia Bail

Assistant Professor, Disciplines of Nursing and Midwifery, Faculty of Health, University of Canberra

Dr Bail’s research focuses on three key areas of health expenditure: older people, hospitals and nursing. Her research aims to improve the quality and efficiency of acute care delivery for ageing populations by providing evidence on interventions and outcomes. She uses qualitative, quantitative and cost analysis methods of inquiry, [...]

Dr. Karen Watson

Lecturer, Faculty of Health, University of Technology Sydney (UTS)

Dr Karen Watson is a registered nurse with a background in naturopathy. Her research interests focus on ways to support the care needs of older people challenged by changes in cognition that can occur with healthy ageing and dementia.  She has investigated interventions, including naturopathy, for the behavioural management of [...]

Dr. Catherine Travers

Senior Research Fellow

PhD (University of Queensland)

Dr Travers is currently managing a mentoring program for early and mid-career dementia care researchers that aims to develop a cohort of capable researchers able to lead and promote dementia care research in Australia. She has previously undertaken projects aimed at improving the care of older people with cognitive impairment [...]

Dr. Jacki Liddle

Research Fellow, Occupational Therapist, School of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering, The University of Queensland


Dr Jacki Liddle’s research focusses on identifying ways to support people living with dementia to continue to participate in their communities. She has an interest in supporting people with managing driving cessation (and was a founder of the CarFreeMe program), managing life transitions related to ageing and health conditions, [...]

Dr. Amanda Fox

Senior Lecturer and Postgraduate Course Coordinator, School of Nursing, Queensland University of Technology

Dr Fox is a Registered Nurse with a clinical background across a variety of settings including both acute and community care. Amanda’s research portfolio includes dementia and cognitive impairment care, health service delivery and advanced practice nursing roles. Recent projects have examined factors influencing the sustainability of health service [...]

Dr. Elaine Fielding

Senior Research Fellow


She is currently involved in a project led by Dr Maria O’Reilly which tests a transition support intervention to improve the residential respite experience of people with dementia and their carers.

Dr. Marita Chisholm

Innovation & Projects Manager Older Persons Health, Warracknabeal, Victoria


Dr Chisholm is a Registered Nurse who completed her PhD in 2016. Her research focuses on access to dementia care and support services in people living with dementia in regional and rural areas. Additional research interests include dementia and selfhood; living well with dementia; volunteering and civic engagement opportunities for people [...]

Dr. Claire O'Connor

Research Fellow, Centre for Positive Ageing, Hammond Care

Dr O’Connor combines her clinical training in occupational therapy with research skills, and is passionate about contributing to research that is meaningful to people impacted by dementia. Her PhD investigated behaviour, function and activity engagement in people living with frontotemporal dementia. More recently, her work has focused on maximising [...]

Dr. Linda Schnitker

Lecturer, School of Nursing, Queensland University of Technology

Linda Schnitker is an RN with a Master’s degree in Advanced Nursing Practice (Nurse Practitioner specialising in aged care). Linda’s research primarily focuses on improving the care of older people with cognitive impairment (i.e. delirium, dementia) in emergency departments departments (ED) and has developed a set of [...]

Dr. Jade Cartwright

Speech Pathologist, Clinical Educator & Researcher, School of Occupational Therapy, Social Work and Speech Pathology, Curtin University

Dr Cartwright has focused her research on finding evidence for word finding, communication and psychosocial interventions for people living with dementia and their families. Jade is particularly interested in developing strategies to support people in the early stages of primary progressive aphasia, enabling proactive coping and continued life participation. Jade’[...]

Meet Our Mentors