Melissa O'Donnell


  • The University of Western Australia (M431), 35 Stirling Highway,

    6009 Perth


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Personal profile


Dr Melissa O'Donnell is a nationally and internationally recognised researcher in the area of child abuse and neglect. Her work utilises linked government data from the Western Australian Departments of Health, Mental Health, Justice, Police, and Communities and she also utilises the national AIHW data. Her research is focused on investigating and monitoring outcomes and risk and proctective factors for children and families who expereince child abuse and neglect and external cases of injury. Dr O'Donnell has successefully collaborated with government agencies to inform policy and practice to improve outcomes for children through prevention and early intervention. Her work has contributed to national and state policy and practice including the National Child Protection Framework and the development of the first Youth Health Policy for Western Australia. Dr O'Donnell has provided her expertise to the United Nations and sits on the International Working Group on Child Maltreatment Data Collections through the International Society for the Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

Education/Academic qualification

Psychology, Masters of Psychology, The University of Western Australia

Award Date: 30 Dec 1999

Psychology, Bachelor of Psychology (Honours)

Education, Diploma of Education

Pediatrics and Child Health, PhD

Industry keywords

  • Social and Welfare Issues
  • Health

Research expertise keywords

  • child abuse and neglect
  • out-of-home care
  • data linkage
  • administrative data


Dive into the research topics where Melissa O'Donnell is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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