Robyn Broadbent is an academic, community researcher, community activist and a committed advocate for the human rights of young people. She is the current Program Head of Youth, Ongoing and Community Education Programs at Victoria University.

Robyn wrote the Youth Work programs at Victoria University, and has taught and managed the program for the past twenty years. Robyn has also been active in the establishment of the Youth Workers Association and continues to sit on the Board. She is currently the Chair of the Commonwealth Alliance of Youth Work Associations.

Along with her academic roles, Robyn has worked in local, state, national and international youth affairs. She currently sits on the expert panel overseeing the development of a global Youth Development Index for the Commonwealth Youth Program, which she presented at the 8th Commonwealth Youth Ministers Meeting. Robyn has worked with the Commonwealth Youth Program in a variety of roles for the past 10 years. In 2016, Robyn assisted in the development of the first Australian Youth Development Index.

Robyn provides advice and mentoring to youth workers in a range of settings and is well known for her collection of youth consultancy work. She has worked with the Victorian Trades Hall Council, and was instrumental in establishing the Visy Cares Hub.

Robyn is proud that her professional grounding was as a youth worker in the western suburbs of Melbourne and continues to be committed to the region to ensure that all young people have access to the full benefits of a wealthy society.

Recent publications

Refereed journal articles

Broadbent, R. (2016) Reviewing the Policy and Implementation of Multipurpose Youth Centres Journal of Applied Youth Studies, August

Broadbent, R. and Corney, T. (2015) From Defence to Human Rights - the Impact of Youth Policy on the Professionalisation of Youth Work in Victoria, Australia, Proceedings European History of Youth Work Conference

Broadbent, R. and Papadopoulos T. (2014) Improving Mental Health and Well-Being for Young Men in the Building and Construction Industry, Journal of Child & Adolescent Mental Health, 26 (3), 217 - 227

Broadbent, R. and Papadopoulos T. (2014) Making it past the finishing post: Construction industry apprentices’ suggestions for improving retention and the support system, The Australian Journal of Labour Economics

Broadbent, R. and Cacciatolo, M. (2013) Exposing the challenges of school community partnerships, Australian Education Research, 40(1)

View more of Robyn's publications in VU's Research Repository.

Contracted research

Broadbent, R. and Papadopoulos, T. (2015) Evaluation of the Learning Model for the Department of Justice, Victorian Department of Justice and Regulation.

Broadbent, R. (2013) Establishment of a Youth Work clinic model at Harvester Secondary College.

Broadbent, R. and Papadopoulos, T. (2012) Evaluation of Federal funded HAVEY Anti-extremism Program, Hume City Council

Broadbent, R. (2012) Building Integrated Youth Centres, Hume City Council

Broadbent, R. and Papadopoulos, T. (2011) Evaluation of the Incolink Life Care Skills Program, Incolink Victoria


Broadbent R., Walsh C., and Linardi F. (eds), (1998) 15 Practitioner Training Books, National Youth Work Training Project, Australian National Training Authority, Melbourne.

Book chapters

Broadbent, R. and Maunders, D. (2009) A Career in Youth Work. In White, R. (ed), Doing Youth Work in Australia, Australian Clearinghouse for Youth Studies, Tasmania.

Bereded, E., Broadbent, R. and Doughney, L. (2001) Bridging Courses for Refugees the experience of the Horn of Africa Communities. In Bertone, S., and Casey, H. (eds),  Migrants in the New Economy, Problems, Processes and Solutions, Workplace Studies Centre, Victoria University.

View more of Robyn's publications in VU's Research Repository.

Conference presentations

Broadbent, R. (2017) Ara Taioihi Youth Work Summit, Measuring Worth, Key Note.

Broadbent, R. (2017) Cumbria University Youth Work Conference, Measuring Worth, Key Note.

Broadbent, R. (2016) Good Practice Youth Work Education, 2nd International Commonwealth Youth Program Youth Work Conference, Pretoria.

Broadbent, R. and Papadopoulos, T. (2011) Developing life skills - evidence from an industry-based youth support program, presented at the Euro-American Conference for Academic Disciplines, International Journal of Arts and Sciences, Prague.

Broadbent R. and Papadopoulos, T. (2011) Does Work Integrated Learning Deliver? An Evaluation of Graduate Capabilities, Employability, and Effective Industry-University Partnerships, presented at the European Academic Conference, Clute Institute, Barcelona.


Research grants

  • Investigating Apprentice support systems as a dynamic factor of retention and industry skill shortages in the construction industry. Incolink Foundation and Victoria University, 2013
  • Establishing a Youth Work Clinic at Harvester Technical College, Helen McPherson Trust, 2013
  • Student Equity Diversity Initiative Grant, Federal Government and Victoria University, 2011
  • ALTC: Australian Youth Work Education: Curriculum Renewal and a Model for Sustainability for Niche Professions, ALTC, 2010
  • Review of VCAL programs at VU. Victoria University, 2010

Teaching responsibilities

Program Manager


  • Appointment as a regional Moderator for the Commonwealth Youth Diploma Program delivered in 6 countries of the Pacific Region. 
  • Appointment as an expert advisor to the Commonwealth Youth Panel that is responsible for the development of a Global Youth Development Index.
  • Presentation of the completed index to the 8th Commonwealth Youth Ministers Meeting in PNG.
  • Original member of the project establishment group for the Visy Cares Hub in Sunshine.
  • Recipient of the inaugural Centenary of Federation Medal for service to Government and Community for educational support for young people at risk, particularly in ethnic and refugee communities.
  • Recognition for Research Grant Achievement, Victoria University for the Young People's Reconciliation Project.
  • Coordination and development of National Youth Work Training and Learning Material.
  • Coordination and development of the articulated degree in Youth Work at Victoria University.
  • Key person in the development of the Research Institute - Institute for Youth, Education and Community at Victoria University.
  • The design, consultation, writing, organisation, accreditation, and delivery of the first 2 Year Diploma/Articulated Degree in Youth Work in Victoria.
  • Discipline Leader for the largest Youth Work Program in Australia.

Areas of expertise

  • Public Policy
  • Youth Policy
  • Youth research

Contact details

(03) 9919 4861