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Fiona Stanley

Perinatal and pediatric epidemiologist; distinguished professorial fellow at University of Western Australia

FAA, FASSA, MSc, MD, FFPHM, FAFPHM, FRACP, FRANZCOG, Hon DSc, Hon DUniv, Hon FRACGP, Hon MD, Hon FRCPCH, Hon LLB (honoris causa)

Fiona Stanley AC is the Founding Director and Patron of the Telethon Institute for Child Health Research and Distinguished Research Professor, School of Paediatrics & Child Health at the University of Western Australia, Vice Chancellor’s Fellow and Director, Festival of Ideas 2013 at the University of Melbourne.

Trained in maternal and child health, epidemiology and public health, Professor Stanley has spent her career researching the causes of major childhood illnesses such as birth defects. Her research includes the gathering and analysis of population data for epidemiological and public health research; the causes and prevention of birth defects and major neurological disorders, particularly the cerebral palsies; patterns of maternal and child health in Aboriginal and Caucasian populations; various ways of determining the developmental origins of health and disease; collaborations to link research, policy and practice; and strategies to enhance health and well-being in populations. She pioneered the development, linkage and analysis of population level data and record linkage in Western Australia as a research and evaluation capacity.

Her major contribution has been to establish the Telethon Institute for Child Health Research, a unique multidisciplinary independent research institute focussing on the causes and prevention of major problems affecting children and youth and the to establish the Australian Research Alliance for Children and Youth. She has over 300 publications, books and book chapters and sits on the Prime Minister’s Science, Engineering and Innovation Council, is a board member of the ABC, and has served on major international, national and local committees. For her research on behalf of Australia's children and Aboriginal social justice, she was named Australian of the Year in 2003 and in 2006 she was made a UNICEF Australia Ambassador for Early Childhood Development.