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InPsych 2016 | Vol 38

June | Issue 3

Cover feature : Psychology innovation in the public sector

APS support for psychologists working in the public sector

The APS has a longstanding commitment to supporting the work of psychologists in the public sector.


For many years, the APS sought to understand the issues for psychologists in the public sector through the appointment of the APS Public Sector and NGO Reference Group (PSNGORG) which was comprised of volunteer APS members with public sector expertise. In addition, the APS employed, for a number of years, a part-time public sector advisor.

More recently, the APS has increased its capacity to inform, work with and respond to the needs of psychologists in the public sector with the appointment of a Manager and Project Officer to the Professional Practice team with expertise in the area. Some of the early work of these recent appointments has been to conduct focus groups with public sector psychologists by State. At the time of going to print, focus groups have been organised in almost half the States across Australia. In addition, an online survey is being developed for public sector psychologists to further assist the APS to identify the resource and other support needs of psychologists from the sector.

In addition, the APS has established a Standing Panel on Professional Practice (SPPP) which replaces the PSNGORG which will provide expert information and advice to the Professional Practice team on a range of issues relevant to the practice of psychology, and will include public sector psychologist representatives.

Looking forward

These recent developments (the new SPPP, and new Manager and Project Officer appointments to the Professional Practice team, as well as the State based focus group and online survey activity) will provide the APS with increased capacity and excellent up-to-date information about the specific resources, advocacy, and other needs of public sector psychologists. This, in turn, will increase APS’s capacity to develop much-needed resources and respond to the advocacy needs of APS public sector psychologists.

Some of the APS initiatives underway or identified for focus in the near future include:

  • Establishing a Public Sector Interest Group,
  • Creating an enhanced public sector space on the APS website where relevant resources, networking and CPD information can be accessed,
  • Ensuring public sector developments, new resources or other information is communicated to APS members via the key APS communication channels (APS Matters, InPsych),
  • Supporting psychology innovation in the public sector through showcasing innovation in APS publications such as this edition of InPsych, Journal features, or Conference presentations where possible, and
  • Responding to public sector priorities as identified through the focus groups and online survey.

If there are other initiatives you would like to see the APS prioritise, contact Tony McHugh at t.mchugh@psychology.org.au or on (03) 8662 3375.


Disclaimer: Published in InPsych on June 2016. The APS aims to ensure that information published in InPsych is current and accurate at the time of publication. Changes after publication may affect the accuracy of this information. Readers are responsible for ascertaining the currency and completeness of information they rely on, which is particularly important for government initiatives, legislation or best-practice principles which are open to amendment. The information provided in InPsych does not replace obtaining appropriate professional and/or legal advice.