Theme Member
Dr Odette Pearson


Phone: 08 8128 4230



PhD in Health Economics and Social Policy, University of South Australia

Graduate Certificate Health Economics, University of South Australia

 Graduate Certificate Research Methodologies

Bachelor of Applied Health Science (Indigenous Primary Health Care), University of South Australia

 Bachelor of Applied Health Science (Indigenous Primary Health Care), University of South Australia


Odette is a Kuku Yalanji/Torres Strait Islander woman jointly appointed as a Senior Research Fellow with Wardliparingga Aboriginal Research Unit at South Australian Health & Medical Research Institute and the Sansom Institute for Health Research within University of South Australia. Her experience and post-doctoral training in Aboriginal health policy, health systems and inequity comprises a unique comprehensive skillset relevant to existing and emerging complexities of Aboriginal health and well-being. Specifically, Odette seeks to understand how institutional policies and practices drive health and social inequities experienced by Indigenous populations. Her novel approach is the use of community-level information to show and explore the reasons for variations in disadvantage both within the Aboriginal community and between the Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal community. Integral to her research is the inclusion of Aboriginal communities in defining their health and wellbeing and how Indigenous data can be governed in the future to derive greater benefit for the population. Her work traverses evidence-based policy development, health services research and epidemiology to identify and address health and social disadvantage and strengths among the Aboriginal population. Odette has expertise in (1) primary health care contexts and systems and their linkages with health and social services (2) conceptual development of Aboriginal specific well-being frameworks and indicators, and (3) using social and epidemiological research to develop policy for chronic disease prevention and management. With strong community and cross sector engagement her current research activities focus on how to reduce disadvantage by improving health and social system responses to better meet the needs of Aboriginal people. Odette leads the Wardliparingga Data Team and Data Management Platform. She is committed to mentoring and developing all members the team and currently co-supervises a Masters of Applied Epidemiology and a PhD student

Research Interests

  • Aboriginal Health
  • Health Inequities
  • Health Systems Research
  • Type 2 Diabetes
  • Social Determinants of Health


    Gibson O, Lisy K, Davy C, Aromataris E, Kite E, Lockwood C, Riitano D, McBride K, Brown A. Enablers and barriers to the implementation of primary health care interventions for Indigenous people with chronic diseases: a systematic review. Implementation Science. 2015;10:71.

    Gialamas A, Pilkington R, Berry J, Scalzi D, Gibson O, Brown A, Lynch J. Identification of Aboriginal children using linked administrative data: consequences for measuring inequalities. Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health. 2016 Jan 1.

    Braunack-Mayer AJ, Gibson OR. Including minority populations in research: we must do better. The Medical Journal of Australia. 2017 Jul 3;207(1):22-3.

    Gomersall JS, Gibson O, Dwyer J, O'donnell K, Stephenson M, Carter D, Canuto K, Munn Z, Aromataris E, Brown A. What Indigenous Australian clients value about primary health care: a systematic review of qualitative evidence. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health. 2017 Aug 1;41(4):417-23.

    Gibson O, Segal L. Limited evidence to assess the impact of primary health care system or service level attributes on health outcomes of Indigenous people with type 2 diabetes: a systematic review. BMC Health Serv Res. 2015;15:154.

Get in touch
+61 8 8128 4000
You can't miss us!
North Terrace Adelaide 5000 South Australia
Postal Address
PO BOX 11060 Adelaide 5001 South Australia
Key Partners
SAHMRI is located on the traditional lands of the Kaurna Nation.

The SAHMRI community acknowledges and respects the traditional owners, the family clans who are the Kaurna Nation from the Adelaide Plains region of South Australia. We acknowledge the clans of the Kaurna Nation and the sacred knowledge they hold for their country. We pay our respects to the Kaurna Nation, their ancestors and the descendants of these living family clans today.