Community-based Research Scheme

Community Based Research Scheme


*Please note: The current round closed on 12 August 2021.  Applications are no longer being accepted for this round.

Do you run a great program or service that is making a difference in the lives of people with disability and/or their families? Are you looking to show just how effective it is or what great outcomes you are achieving?

At Melbourne Disability Institute we run a program that might just be able to help.

We know that getting evidence of good outcomes and demonstrating impact is something community based organisations want - but sometimes the budget just doesn’t stretch that far.

The Melbourne Disability Institute’s Community-Based Research Scheme meets the research needs of community organisations by providing research support and evaluation for strength-based and innovative programs that are making a difference in the lives of people with disability, their families and carers.

Research support provided through the Scheme may include a scoping report, literature review, data analysis or a small research project. Research can lead to outcomes such as improved service delivery, the development of new services, improved ability to advocate effectively or improved capacity to undertake future research projects.

Please note the purpose of Community-based research scheme is to support research and evaluation of innovative ideas that build social capital; to share practices; and to replicate or scale up ideas, not to evaluate a core business or service.

How the Scheme works

Each community organisation will be matched with a researcher from the University of Melbourne with relevant expertise. The Melbourne Disability Institute and the researcher will work hand-in-hand with the community organisation to help design and deliver a feasible research project.

Selection Criteria

Programs will be assessed on the following criteria:

  • The program or service aims to build the capacity of people with disability, their family or carers to live engaged, self-directed and fulfilling lives.
  • People with disability will be involved in assessing the impact and value of the program or service.
  • The research question or questions have been chosen or informed by people with a disability, their families or carers.
  • People with disability and their families and carers will be involved throughout the research project.
  • The research will lead to knowledge that can be used by the community organisation as well as other organisations to benefit people with disability.

Eligibility criteria

To be eligible for the MDI Community-based Research Scheme your organisation must:

  • Provide support or services to people with a disability, their family or carers.
  • Be of small to medium size (less than 200 employees)
  • Have limited capacity to conduct research
  • Be based in Victoria, or the program must be based in Victoria
  • Include a statement how people with a disability, their family or carers are involved in your organisation, and how they will be involved in the research project.

Please make sure you read the Community-based Research Scheme Information Pack before completing the application form.


The current round is now closed.

Community-based organisations with a project idea can apply to be considered for a research project by  completing the Community-based Research application form. We do our best to make sure the application form is clear and accessible; if you have any issues please let us know.

Please Contact Campbell Message to discuss your idea and see how a research project could be shaped for your idea. or phone  03 9035 7775.

Please make sure you read the Information Pack below.

Application Form (Word)

Information Pack (Word)

Information Pack (PDF)