Expert Interviews

Help us strengthen the Outdoor Health sector

About this study

You are invited to participate in a research project exploring mechanisms for safe, ethical, and consistent practices within Outdoor Health services in Australia.

One part of this project involves looking at the areas of crossover between the emerging outdoor health sector and the broader health and social service systems.

If you have landed on this page, it is likely that you or one of your colleagues may be able to make an important contribution to this project.

An Invitation

We are currently inviting participation in a research project being conducted by the University of Tasmania.

  • Do you or one of your colleagues have a broad understanding of an area of health service provision in Australia? Examples include areas of concern such as: mental health, ageing or disability. OR, marginalised groups of people who experience inequitable health provision such: indigenous communities, lgbtiq+ communities, or other marginalised groups not listed.
  • Would you be willing to share your knowledge for research that will contribute to the development of the emerging interdisciplinary Outdoor Health sector?

If you answer yes to these two questions, read on.

The research team are working to better understand the position of the emerging outdoor health sector in Australia.

More specifically, this project will develop knowledge for the Outdoor Health sector about how to ensures safe, ethical, and consistent practices.

As well as speaking to OH services directly, we are inviting people from a range of health and social service sector peak and representative bodies to contribute to these topics.

You are invited because we want to look at the areas of crossover between the emerging outdoor health sector and the broader health system.

If you can participate in this research, please get in touch. Email [email protected], or call (03) 8547 9555.

What do we mean by Outdoor Health?

We are using outdoor health as an umbrella term for a broad range of related approaches that support human health and wellbeing. We use the term services, knowing that people may offer services, programs or other forms of support. These all share ‘nature’, ‘the outdoors’, or ‘country’ as a common feature. Some of the related approaches include bush adventure therapy, indigenous healing practices, therapeutic horticulture, outdoor counselling, forest therapy, ecotherapy, equine therapy and more. Read more…

What is the purpose of this study?

UTAS researchers are aiming to better understand the position of the emerging outdoor health sector in Australia.

More specifically, this project will develop foundational knowledge for the sector about how to ensure safe, ethical, and consistent practices.

Why have I been asked?

We have identified that you or one of your colleagues may be able to support this part of the project.

What will I be asked to do?

You, along with some of your colleagues are invited to take part in an informal interview. This will be a relaxed discussion, in the location of your choice (or by phone or video call), and last for approximately 60 minutes.

How can I participate?

If you would like to participate in the project, please contact Ben, email or call to arrange the next steps.

Can I change my mind during or after the study?

You are free to withdraw without consequence anytime during the research project, up until four weeks following the interview date. After this time your interview information may have been included in the analysis and it will be difficult to separate and remove it entirely. If you wish, your details will be de-identified so you cannot be identified from your answers. In this case, we will also remove the name of the service and any specific geographic information from the collected data before analysis. We will be inviting participants to review the information you provide following the interview and prior to us using that information within project.

Are there any possible risks from participation in this study?

There are no foreseeable or anticipated risks of harm from participation in this study. Beyond the inconvenience of time, you will not be asked to discuss anything that is distressing or uncomfortable for you. Face to face interviews will not take place if any party is unwell, and COVID-19 safety guidelines will be adhered to at all times.

Are there any possible benefits from participation in this study?

There are no direct benefits, but we hope this research will benefit current and emerging outdoor health services and in doing this provide greater access to outdoor health practices as an option alongside other established approaches.

What will happen to the data when the research is over?

The interview data will only include your name and preferred contact method. Recordings and transcripts will be stored on a University of Tasmania server for five years from the date of the project completion. This server is password-protected and only accessible to the researchers of this study. Data will be destroyed at the end of the five years.

How will the results be made public?

All data in this study will be made anonymous before it is included in analysis. Your data will be compared to and synthesised with data from other participants. The results will be discussed in public forums and may be published. You will have the opportunity to review your interview transcript before the analysis occurs. If you wish to be notified of the final results of this study, please let the researchers know at the time of interview.

What if I have questions?

If you have any queries, concerns, or issues with this study, please feel free to contact Ben Knowles or Pauline Marsh on the contact details above.

This study has been approved by the University of Tasmania Human Research Ethics Committee. If you have concerns or complaints about the conduct of this study, you can contact the Executive Officer of the HREC (Tasmania) Network on (03) 6226 6254 or email [email protected]. The Executive Officer is the person nominated to receive complaints from research participants. Please quote 25013.