Reports and publications (published elsewhere)

Housing and children’s development and wellbeing: a scoping study

Posted on: 25 August, 2010
Issue: Vol 10 No 3, July 2010 - September 2010
Related to Environment Physical environment Housing Social and emotional wellbeing Infants and young children Protective and risk factors Social issues

Dockery AM, Kendall G, Li J, Mahendran A, Ong R, Strazdins L (2010)
Housing and children’s development and wellbeing: a scoping study
Melbourne: Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute

This study included a review of existing international literature in the area of child ecology, and assessment of the viability of pursuing empirical research within an Australian context. The four main areas addressed in the research question included: the influential factors of particular aspects of housing; implications of future policy and programs; existing Australian databases; and suitable approaches to methodology and analysis.

The research utilised the conceptual framework of Bronfenbrenner’s bio-ecological theory which identified the importance of early identification and intervention in childhood development and wellbeing, in particular the links between aspects of housing on later childhood achievements. The housing aspects studied included physical, environmental, social and economic characteristics.

The findings of this study identified a clear need for further research to be conducted in Australia, and highlighted the existing evidence gaps for this area. It acknowledged areas of policy concern including the high proportion of homeless children in Australia, the recognition that Indigenous Australian children experience significantly worse housing variables than non-Indigenous Australian children, and the prevalence of housing stress in Australia, particularly among households with children.

Australian Indigenous HealthInfoNet abstract

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