Niki Edwards – Committee Member

Niki graduated in Social Work from the University of Queensland (UQ) in 1982, completed a Bachelor of Arts in 1992 (UQ), a Master of Public Administration in 2000 (UQ) and a PhD in Epidemiology in 2007 (UQ). She has worked in health, disability and human services for more than 20 years: initially working in psychiatric services as people with disabilities moved from institutional care/community development, then clinical work in hospital and rehabilitation settings, public policy and public administration across government portfolios including family services, community services, disability and mental health, and in recent years, medical education. Niki has been involved in academia for more than a decade, undertaking mixed methods (qualitative and quantitative) research and teaching responsibilities at undergraduate and postgraduate levels, including teaching of medical students and trainee psychiatrists. She recently worked for government developing mental health policy and undertook community partnership work but is more specifically interested in the mental health needs of vulnerable people, including people with disabilities (particularly those with intellectual and developmental disability). Niki is one of the few accredited international trainers in the psychiatric assessment of adults with intellectual and developmental disability. Other focused research and teaching interests include disability in the international setting, human rights, women’s issues and clinical communication between allied health professionals and medical practitioners. Niki is appointed as a Senior Lecturer with the School of Public Health and Social Work and from 2014 was appointed as the Coordinator of the Social Work undergraduate degrees. Regardless of her academic career and working life, Niki considers her greatest achievement to be parenting her five beautiful children and three “pesky” dachshunds with her partner of 30 years.