Researcher biography

Jenny Povey is a Research Group Leader at the Institute for Social Science Research, and a Senior Research Fellow in Social Methods in the ARC Centre of Excellence on Families and Children over the Life Course (the Life Course Centre) at The University of Queensland. She is a Psychologist and obtained her BA Honors, MA and PhD from the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University in South Africa. Before coming to ISSR, Jenny worked as a Chief Researcher at the Human Sciences Research Council in South Africa in the area of Education effectiveness. Jenny's research expertise is in the area of evidence-based practice and social policy evaluation, more specifically focusing on education effectiveness, parent engagement, child wellbeing and disadvantage. She has extensive experience in mixed methods research using administrative data together with survey and qualitative data. Jenny has worked closely with Government Departments and Ministries both in Australia (e.g. DHHS in Tasmania; Commonwealth DET; Qld DET; CESE NSW; Commonwealth DSS) and internationally (e.g. South Africa, Eritrea, Cambodia and the Solomon Islands) to gather research evidence from a wide range of disadvantaged communities to inform policy. In addition to managing the Try, Test and Learn Evaluation, she is currently working on understanding why and how some schools are more effective at parent engagement than others and how improving parent engagement in socially disadvantaged schools effects cognitive and non-cognitive (including well-being) outcomes of students living in these communities over their life course.