Dr Claire Wilkinson

Dr Claire Wilkinson

Senior Lecturer

PhD in Population HealthUniversity of MelbourneGraduate Certificate in Addiction Research, Dresden International University; Diploma in Japanese, University of Melbourne; Bachelor of Science (Honours, Psychology), University of Melbourne; Bachelor of Arts and Sciences, Development Studies & Psychology, University of Melbourne

Arts, Design & Architecture (ADA)
Social Policy Research Centre

Dr Claire Wilkinson is a NHMRC Senior Research Fellow at the Drug Policy Modelling Program (DPMP) at UNSW, and an Honorary Research Fellow at the Centre for Alcohol Policy Research (CAPR), La Trobe University.

Claire's PhD evaluated recent and historical approaches to limiting alcohol outlet density at a local level in Victoria using both licensing and planning legislation. Claire’s research on alcohol policy is multidisciplinary drawing on public health and public policy as well as historical perspectives. She uses  mixed methods. She maintains close links with CAPR, La Trobe University, where she worked as a Research Associate prior to commencing at UNSW. She has published over 50 publications including peer-reviewed articles, book chapters and reports.

Claire is grateful for outstanding mentors, especially Prof Robin Room and A/Prof Sarah MacLean, La Trobe University and now, at UNSW, from Prof Alison Ritter AO. She counts herself lucky to have spent a formative ten years at Melbourne's TurningPoint, Alcohol & Drug Centre, which has given rise to many of Australia's former and current leaders in AOD research, practice and policy.

+61-2-9065 8351
122 Goodsell Building

  • 2020 Alcohol purchasing and consumption: Learning from pandemic containment measures for more effective alcohol policy
  • 2019 -2020 La Trobe University Sheffield Hallam University Collaborative Research Seed Grants, $10,000 
  • 2019 NSW Ministry of Health, $32,000
  • 2018 - 2022: NHMRC Early Career Fellowship, $322,952
  • 2016 Victorian Health Promotion Foundation, $150,000
  • 2016 Western Australia Mental Health Commission, for The Intergovernmental Committee on Drugs (Federal Government), $75,000
  • 2015 NSW Ministry of Health, $20,000
  • 2013 World Health Organization, $14,000


  • 2020: Honourable Mention, Early Career Academic Publication Award, Faculty of Art & Social Sciences, UNSW
  • 2018: Winner, Late Breaking Presentation, Scientific Alcohol & Drug Conference, Australasian Professional Society for Alcohol & Other Drugs, New Zealand
  • 2018-2022: Early Career Fellowship, National Health and Medical Research Council, Australia
  • 2013: Junior Researcher Paper Price, Master Class in Addiction, Addiction Research Institute (IVO) Rotterdam, The Netherlands
  • 2012: Finnish Government Doctoral Scholarship, University of Helsinki, Finland
  • 2012: Postgraduate Overseas Research Scholarship, The University of Melbourne
  • 2012: Graduate Social Science/Humanities Scholarship, Queen’s College, The University of Melbourne
  • 2011: Frank Murphy Travelling Scholarship, Turning Point Alcohol & Drug Centre, Melbourne
  • 2011-2014: Australian Postgraduate Award, Australian Government

Current Research Interests

Community ownership as an instrument for public health and welfare: Lessons from Australia’s community-owned licensed premises

A new research interest in advancing knowledge about the trend in town groups buying pubs across regional Australia. I'm interested in advancing knowledge about the role of co-operatively owned licensed premises, such as pubs and sports clubs, in promoting the health and well-being of communities throughout Australia. I'd like to understand the impact of co-operatively owned licensed premises on community health and well-being, social cohesion and local economies.

List of media reporting on co-operatively purchased and run pubs in regional Australia (updated March 2022)

Member, Australian Fabians, Policy Action group on Co-operatives and Mutuals 2022 - ongoing


Editorial Duties:

  • Deputy Editor (Critiques), Drug and Alcohol Review (est. 1981)
  • Member of the editorial board of International Journal of Drug Policy


  • Early Career Academic Network Committee Member, Faculty of Arts, Design and Architecture, UNSW, 2020 to 2022.
  • Advisory Group Member, Support Local Government Project, Alcohol & Drug Foundation, 2020.
  • Early Career Academic Representative, Social Policy Research Centre/Centre for Social Research on Health Research Committee, UNSW, 2018-2019.
  • Coordinating Committee, Kettil Bruun Society for Social and Epidemiological Research on Alcohol, 2015-2017.
  • Higher-Degree Research Student Representative, School of Global and Public Health, University of Melbourne, 2012-2013.

Visiting appointments:

  • Centre for Research on Addiction, Control and Governance, University of Helsinki, 2012

Professional Society Memberships: 

I am a member of the Australasian Professional Society on Alcohol & other Drugs, and The Alcohol and Drugs History Society, and the Kettil Bruun Society for Social and Epidemiological Research on Alcohol.

My Research Supervision

My Research Supervision

Filip Djordjevic (PhD, Centre for Alcohol Policy Research, La Trobe University) Participation in alcohol policy-making (Sheffield Hallam-La Trobe Universities joint-PhD Scheme, Joint Supervisor); 2021 to present.

PhD completions

Stephanie Colbert (2024) Understanding the online alcohol delivery market in Australia to inform improved regulation of the industry and reduce alcohol-related harm. (Primary Supervisor: Professor Xiao Feng; Joint Supervisor: Claire Wilkinson; Secondary Supervisor: Professor Robyn Richmond and Louise Thornton). School of Population Health, Faculty of Medicine, UNSW Sydney.

Michala Kowalski (2024) Alcohol policy-making in the night-time economy. (Primary Supervisor: Professor Alison Ritter; Joint Supervisor: Claire Wilkinson; Secondary Supervisor: A/Professor: Michael Livingston). National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre, UNSW Sydney.

My Teaching

Teaching Areas

Social research methods, policy-making, policy analysis, qualitative research methods

Current Teaching

SOSS3007 Evidence for Policy Making (T2 2024)

SOSS2001 Qualitative Social Research (T1 2024)

Honours Supervision (Completed Projects)

Keelin O'Reilly (2022), Drug trafficking thresholds (UNSW Sydney)

Ella Dyson (2018) Attitudes towards warning statements about short-term and long-term harms of alcohol in younger and older drinkers (Psychology, LaTrobe University, Melbourne)

Lisa Gelbart (2006) Trends in media reporting on alcohol-related violence since 2005 (Biomedical Science, Monash University, Melbourne)