Brain vs The Bottle

Media Release: Thursday, 3 November 2016

Melbourne alcohol researcher Dr Michael Livingston has been nominated for Research Australia’s Griffith University Discovery Award for his work in alcohol policy, and the impact that he has had in changing ideas around drinking habits.

“Alcohol contributes to a whole suite of health and social problems in Australia, and working on ways to reduce these harms is incredibly motivating,” said Dr Michael Livingston.

“One of the main research focus areas has been developing a clearer understanding of the social and health impacts of our liquor licensing policy.

“Being nominated for the Griffith University Discovery Award is amazing – it is great to have my work recognised and to have this critical area of public health acknowledged at the Research Australia Awards.”

CEO of Research Australia, Nadia Levin, said promoting these researchers at the beginning of their careers offers them a great boost, and that recognition on this scale can be something of a rarity.

“Research Australia is always particularly proud of our Discovery Award nominees, because they represent the future promise of the sector and the differences that can be made,” said Ms Levin.

“Dr Livingstone’s research is targeting an endemic question in our society that both nationally and within each state, policy makers and health and medical researchers are trying to address.

“It is a topic that crosses into all areas of our community, and Michael has not let its scale deter him from addressing the issues, and transferring valuable improvements to the community.”

The 2016 Griffith University Discovery Award is awarded to an early career researcher who has made a significant impact within five years of completing their degree.

“We are seeing a decline in youth drinking and this has potential for major, long-term positive benefits for population health,” Dr Livingstone said.

“Alongside that we need to understand why this has occurred, so that policy and practice can continue to support these positive developments.

“It’s a fascinating topic – alcohol is deeply embedded in our society, meaning there are almost endless interesting avenues for research which we can pursue to generate good outcomes.

“I’m continuing to develop this work, in collaboration with researchers in Australia and overseas, to develop more specific policy recommendations and limit the unintended consequences of liquor licensing policies.”

Research Australia recognises the valuable support and generosity of the Awards’ sponsors, Griffith University and GlaxoSmithKline, without whom, much of this recognition would not be possible.

The Griffith University Discovery Award will be announced at the Research Australia Awards on Wednesday 16 November. Tickets available here.

Media Contact: Philip McCall 02 9234 3888 or 0438 619 987
Isabelle Colla 02 9234 3888 or 0432 970 548

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