Griffith University

Griffith University was awarded $200,000 in grant funding as part of the Queensland Government Youth Research Grants to help stimulate interest in research that reflects the needs and views of young Queenslanders.

Twenty young people delivered 8 research projects across the following topics:

  • climate action and the environment
  • sustainable communities.

    Climate action and the environment

    Power to the (young) people: including Indigenous youth voices in the clean energy transition

    This project explored the question: How can young Indigenous people be meaningfully engaged and included in the clean energy transition in remote Australia? By drawing upon lessons from broader literature on youth engagement, the team synthesised a framework for youth engagement applicable to remote Indigenous community contexts. The framework includes seven key elements that build individual capacity, are necessary supporting systems and create an enabling environment to support sustainable and sustained inclusion of young Indigenous people in the clean energy sector.

    Fast fashion: what’s the problem anyway? Mapping the social and environmental impacts within the system

    This project used a literature review to investigate the fast fashion system—aiming to identify the social and environmental impacts across the fashion life cycle and determine where key pressures are felt. The project team created a system map infographic and a social media campaign. The components focused on educating young people about the scale of the impacts from overconsumption of fashion, and the intersections of environmental harm and social injustice associated with the fast fashion industry.

    What makes high-profile people change their stance on climate change?

    This project aimed to identify and appropriately communicate what makes high-profile individuals change their position on climate action. In doing so, the project sought to support students to work with researchers and partners to co-design and deliver a framework for engaging high-profile individuals on what influenced a change in their stance on climate action.

    Reporting young people’s perspectives of climate change in southwest Queensland

    This project aimed to address the marginalisation of young people's perspectives on climate change, particularly in rural and regional Australia. It sought to investigate the representation of young people's interests and perspectives in media coverage of climate change impacts in southwest Queensland and develop participatory journalism practices to amplify their voices in media discourses. The research outputs include journalism data, student-written stories, a web-based platform, academic articles on the effectiveness of experiential learning, and pedagogical reflections.

    Transforming climate change and human health education using key Planetary Health principles and frameworks

    This interdisciplinary project aimed to transform climate change and human health education using key Planetary Health principles and frameworks. Through literature reviews, videos, questionnaires, and presentations, the project seeks to gain a better understanding of the impacts of climate change on human health, embed planetary health approaches in education curricula, and foster intergenerational leadership in climate change and health action. The project also includes future research into the use of Planetary Health approaches in other disciplines' curricula.

    Evaluation of local level coastal climate adaptation in Queensland

    This project aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of the QCoast2100 program, which funded local governments along the Queensland coast to implement Coastal Hazard Adaptation Strategies (CHAS) to prepare these communities for sea level rise and coastal flooding. The project evaluated completed CHAS documents in terms of best practice coastal adaptation strategies and practices. Research outputs include an evaluation report, interview data, a journal article, and a working paper on motivating climate action, future climate transitions, and climate justice. The project was conducted in collaboration with the Climate Ready Initiative, which focuses on developing partnerships and projects to address climate risks and opportunities.

    Sustainable communities

    The impact of the Participatory Youth-Led Educating Program—A study into learner engagement and self-efficacy

    This project evaluated the impact of the Participatory Youth-Led Educating Program (PYEP) on learner engagement and self-efficacy. It tracked the engagement of participants throughout the program across behavioural, social, and emotional domains, and their reported journey of self-efficacy. The project produced a literature review, program evaluation tool, video, and worked with Zero Positive for Schools to improve young people's understanding of climate change. The project's evaluation demonstrated that participants gained knowledge, confidence, and understanding of complex climate change issues.

    Engaging young people in decision-making on climate action: identifying key priorities

    The project examined effective ways of engaging young people in decision-making on climate action and identifying their key priorities for engagement. A literature review was conducted in Phase 1, which identified gaps in knowledge and possibilities for future research. The working paper with recommendations was submitted to government, industry, and peak associations. The project undertook focus groups and round tables with young people in Phase 2.

    More information

    For more information about Griffith University’s research projects, contact Natasha Hennessy by emailing or the Climate Action Beacon by emailing