In 2007, Professors Jill Thistlethwaite, Alison Lee (dec) and I were discussing whether we would develop a funding proposal to undertake a national scoping study of Australian interprofessional education (IPE). We were unsure – this would not be standard research and IPE is a complex phenomenon. We decide to go ahead. Almost ten years later, we have just commenced our sixth and largest project, Securing an Interprofessional Future for Australian Heath Education and Practice, funded by what was until recently the Office for Learning and Teaching – an Australian peak body funding innovation, development and research in Australian higher education.
The new project builds on previous Australian R&D and brings together an interprofessional team drawn from eight universities, seven in Australia and one in the UK; and from two regional NGO bodies, the Australia and New Zealand Association for Health Professional Educators, and the Australasian Interprofessional Practice and Education Network. The project will also draw on the experience and insights of many eminent educators, researchers, health professionals etc., from Australia, New Zealand and, more broadly, globally – members of the Project Reference Group.