What do we do?

Strengthen evidence use and development in the child and family services sector to achieve better outcomes through bringing together service providers, policy makers, service users, program developers, researchers and evaluators.

We do this through the:

  • The OPEN Portal – sharing the research, and resources on practice, client experience and sharing and building evidence from across the sector, Australia and internationally
  • OPEN Events and innovative partnerships – learning from the best available research, collaborations and sector driven evidence about outcomes
  • OPEN Advisory Services – providing expertise and support to strengthen skills, knowledge and confidence in using and building evidence

You can subscribe for free to get monthly updates on all OPEN happenings and resources.

Who are we?

Located in the Centre for Excellence in Child and Family Welfare, the work of OPEN is supported by a small group of staff who have experience in research, evaluation, policy, client and child engagement, implementation and practice.










We are passionate about OPEN’s priorities to:   

  • Strengthen the sector’s knowledge and skills in creating and using the best available evidence
  • Make sure the voices of children, young people and families inform sector programs and approaches
  • Identify, translate and share knowledge and evidence about what matters to the sector
  • Foster sharing of practice expertise from across the sector to inform programs and approaches
  • Foster sector–research collaboration and partnerships to support research that meets the needs of the service system.

What do we have for you?

OPEN offers:

  • Opportunities to build and share knowledge through communities of practice, forums and training workshops
  • Support to strengthen your skills and knowledge to deliver evidence-informed services
  • Access to events that explore creative sector-led research ideas and collaborations
  • Access to expertise, support and training through the OPEN advisory service + IDEAS projects
  • Participation in our annual symposium to showcase practice-research collaborations in child and family services
  • Links to experts and a wide range of evidence-informed activities, practice resources and information to build, translate and share knowledge.

To access OPEN opportunities become a member today, it’s free!

Our background

The Victorian Government’s Roadmap for Reform identified the need for the sector to become a ‘learning system’, in which outcomes are measured and services are underpinned by the best available evidence.

In 2017, OPEN was established as a key component of the learning system to strengthen evidence use and creation within the sector and facilitate strong engagement and collaboration among services providers, practitioners, researchers and policy makers.

OPEN is a joint initiative, managed by the Centre for Excellence in Child and Family Welfare and funded by the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).

OPEN Steering Committee

The OPEN Steering Committee brings together representatives from the sector, policy makers and researchers to guide and shape OPEN and make sure that we deliver on our priorities. We are grateful for the collective wisdom of our steering committee.

Members and their profiles can be found here.

We are also very interested in any contribution from OPEN members to the direction and priorities of OPEN. Please make contact with any suggestions.

OPEN is delivered by

OPEN is supported by