Karen Gardner

Senior Lecturer

Karen is Senior Research Fellow  in the Public Service Research Group at the School of Business, UNSW Canberra. She has a background in sociology, a masters in population health and a PhD in primary health care.  Before moving into academia, Karen worked in practice and policy roles in the non-government sector and in government in the areas of youth health and homelessness, and primary health care reform. Her research draws on sociological and evaluation theories to investigate policy and program implementation in complex real world settings. Much of her work has been in conducted in partnership with Aboriginal community controlled health services. She has led large scale program evaluations, specialising in applying evaluation theory and qualitative approaches in mixed method designs; projects exploring the process and impacts of co-designed social support programs; and the implementation and use of data in continuous quality improvement and primary care performance measurement programs.  Karen has been a consultant to the Australian, ACT and NSW governments. She has more than 100 working papers, technical reports and peer reviewed publications and has published in the Mandarin and the Guardian.

Book Chapters
add
Blackman D; Buick F; O'Donnell M, 2021, 'Designing performance management to be an ethical tool', in Blackman D; Buick F; Gardner K; Glennie M; Johnson S; O'Donnell M; Olney S (ed.), Handbook on Performance Management in the Public Sector, Edward Elgar, pp. 294 - 307
2021
Dickinson H; Gardner K; Dowden M; Van der Linden N, 2020, 'Driving Change Across Boundaries: Eliminating Crusted Scabies in Northern Territory, Australia', in Nugus P (ed.), Transitions and Boundaries in the Coordination and Reform of Health Services Building Knowledge, Strategy and Leadership, Springer Nature
2020
Gardner K; Fitzpatrick C, 2003, 'Creating Community Pride: the Bridgewater-Gagebrook Urban Renewal Program', in Dixon J; Hoates L; Weeks W (ed.), Community Practices in Australia
2003
Edited Books
add
Blackman D; Buick F; Gardner K; Glennie M; Johnson S; O'Donnell M; Olney S, (eds.), 2021, Handbook on Performance Management in the Public Sector, Edward Elgar, https://www.e-elgar.com/shop/gbp/handbook-on-performance-management-in-the-public-sector-9781789901191.html
2021
Journal articles
add
Stiles MK; Wilde AAM; Abrams DJ; Ackerman MJ; Albert CM; Behr ER; Chugh SS; Cornel MC; Gardner K; Ingles J; James CA; Jimmy Juang JM; Kääb S; Kaufman ES; Krahn AD; Lubitz SA; MacLeod H; Morillo CA; Nademanee K; Probst V; Saarel EV; Sacilotto L; Semsarian C; Sheppard MN; Shimizu W; Skinner JR; Tfelt-Hansen J; Wang DW, 2021, '2020 APHRS/HRS expert consensus statement on the investigation of decedents with sudden unexplained death and patients with sudden cardiac arrest, and of their families', Heart Rhythm, vol. 18, pp. e1 - e50, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.hrthm.2020.10.010
2021
Doyle C; Gardner K; Wells K, 2021, 'The Importance of Incorporating Lived Experience in Efforts to Reduce Australian Reincarceration Rates', International Journal for Crime, Justice and Social Democracy, vol. 9, http://dx.doi.org/10.5204/ijcjsd.1666
2021
Doyle C; Gardner K; Wells K, 2021, 'The Importance of Incorporating Lived Experience in Efforts to Reduce Australian Reincarceration Rates', International Journal for Crime, Justice and Social Democracy, vol. 10, http://dx.doi.org/10.5204/ijcjsd.1942
2021
Stiles MK; Wilde AAM; Abrams DJ; Ackerman MJ; Albert CM; Behr ER; Chugh SS; Cornel MC; Gardner K; Ingles J; James CA; Juang JMJ; Kääb S; Kaufman ES; Krahn AD; Lubitz SA; MacLeod H; Morillo CA; Nademanee K; Probst V; Saarel EV; Sacilotto L; Semsarian C; Sheppard MN; Shimizu W; Skinner JR; Tfelt-Hansen J; Wang DW, 2021, '2020 APHRS/HRS expert consensus statement on the investigation of decedents with sudden unexplained death and patients with sudden cardiac arrest, and of their families', Journal of Arrhythmia, http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/joa3.12449
2021
Raphiphatthana B; Maulana H; Howarth T; Gardner K; Nagel T, 2020, 'Digital mental health resources for asylum seekers, refugees, and immigrants: Protocol for a scoping review', JMIR Research Protocols, vol. 9, http://dx.doi.org/10.2196/19031
2020
Gardner K; Dickinson H; Moon K, 2019, 'Re-orienting health systems through a commissioning approach: Finding solutions for improved consumer engagement', Health Research Policy and Systems, vol. 17, pp. 71, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12961-019-0471-9
2019
Sibthorpe B; Gardner K; Chan M; Dowden M; Sargent G; McAullay D, 2018, 'Impacts of continuous quality improvement in Aboriginal and Torres Strait islander primary health care in Australia: A scoping systematic review', Journal of Health Organization and Management, vol. 32, pp. 545 - 571, http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/JHOM-02-2018-0056
2018
Gardner K; Kearns R; Woodland L; Silveira M; Hua M; Katz M; Takas K; McDonald J, 2018, 'A scoping review of the evidence on health promotion interventions for reducing waterpipe smoking: Implications for practice', Frontiers in Public Health, vol. 6, pp. 308, http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpubh.2018.00308
2018
Kearns R; Gardner K; Silveira M; Woodland L; Hua M; Katz M; Takas K; McDonald J; Harris-Roxas B, 2018, 'Shaping interventions to address waterpipe smoking in Arabic-speaking communities in Sydney, Australia: A qualitative study', BMC Public Health, vol. 18, pp. 1379, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12889-018-6270-3
2018
McAullay D; McAuley K; Bailie R; Mathews V; Jacoby P; Gardner K; Sibthorpe B; Strobel N; Edmond K, 2018, 'Sustained participation in annual continuous quality improvement activities improves quality of care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children', Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health, vol. 54, pp. 132 - 140, http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/jpc.13673
2018
van der Linden N; van Gool K; Gardner K; Dickinson H; Agostino J; Regan DG; Dowden M; Viney R, 2018, 'A systematic review of scabies transmission models and data to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of scabies interventions', PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, vol. 13, pp. e0007182, http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pntd.0007182
2018
Gardner K; Sibthorpe B; Chan M; Sargent G; Dowden M; McAullay D, 2018, 'Implementation of continuous quality improvement in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander primary health care in Australia: A scoping systematic review', BMC Health Services Research, vol. 18, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12913-018-3308-2
2018
Gardner K; Olney S; Dickinson H, 2018, 'Getting smarter with data: Understanding tensions in the use of data in assurance and improvement-oriented performance management systems to improve their implementation', Health Research Policy and Systems, vol. 16, pp. 125, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12961-018-0401-2
2018
McNamara RJ; Kearns RL; Dennis SM; Harris MF; Gardner K; McDonald J, 2018, 'Knowledge, Skill, and Confidence in People Attending Pulmonary Rehabilitation: A Cross-Sectional Analysis of the effects and Determinants of Patient Activation', Journal of Patient Experience, http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/2374373518778864
2018
Yu S; Van Gool K; edwards K; Kirby S; Gardner K; Robinson L; Linehan T; Harris M; Hall J, 2017, 'The business of integrated care: implementing new models of care in a fee-for-service setting.', International Journal of Integrated Care, vol. 26, pp. 16 - 28, http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/JICA-08-2017-0026
2017
Gardner K; Powell Davies G; Edwards K; McDonald J; Findlay T; Kearns R; Joshi C; Harris MF, 2016, 'A rapid review of the impact of commissioning on service use, quality, outcomes and value for money: implications for Australian policy', Australian Journal of Primary Health, vol. 22, pp. 40 - 49, http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/PY15148
2016
Gardner K; Shibasaki S; Sibthorpe B, 2016, 'Crafting health messages with knowledge translation to provoke interest, raise awareness, inspire change, impart knowledge and transform practice', Journal of Medical Internet Research, vol. 4, pp. E115 - E115, http://dx.doi.org/10.2196/mhealth.5987
2016
Gardner KG; Sibthorpe B, 2015, 'Sibthorpe B, Gardner K, McAullay D Furthering the quality agenda in Aboriginal community controlled health services: understanding the relationship between accreditation and continuous quality improvement', Australian Journal of Primary Health, vol. 22, pp. 270 - 275, http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/PY15139
2015
Gardner KG, 2015, 'Useability of patient experience surveys in Australian primary healthcare: A scoping review', Australian Journal of Primary Health, vol. 22, pp. 93 - 99, http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/PY14179
2015
Brusse C; Gardner K; McAullay D; Dowden M, 2014, 'Social media and mobile apps for health promotion in Australian indigenous populations: Scoping review', Journal of Medical Internet Research, vol. 16, http://dx.doi.org/10.2196/jmir.3614
2014
Gardner K; Banfield M; McRae I; Gillespie J; Yen L, 2014, 'Improving coordination through information continuity: A framework for translational research', BMC Health Services Research, vol. 14, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12913-014-0590-5
2014
Banfield M; Gardner K; McRae I; Gillespie J; Wells R; Yen L, 2013, 'Unlocking information for coordination of care in Australia: A qualitative study of information continuity in four primary health care models', BMC Family Practice, vol. 14, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1471-2296-14-34
2013
Panaretto KS; Gardner KL; Button S; Carson A; Schibasaki R; Wason G; Baker D; Mein J; Dellit A; Lewis D; Wenitong M; Ring I, 2013, 'Prevention and management of chronic disease in Aboriginal and Islander Community Controlled Health Services in Queensland: A quality improvement study assessing change in selected clinical performance indicators over time in a cohort of services', BMJ Open, vol. 3, http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2012-002083
2013
Jowsey T; Ward NJ; Gardner K, 2013, 'Agents in time: Representations of chronic illness', Health Sociology Review, vol. 22, pp. 243 - 254, http://dx.doi.org/10.5172/hesr.2013.22.3.243
2013
Panaretto KS; Gardner KL; Button S; Carson A; Leon D; Schibasaki R; Wason G; Baker D; Mein J; Dellit A; Wenitong M; Lewis D; Ring I, 2013, 'Erratum: Prevention and management of chronic disease in Aboriginal and Islander Community Controlled Health Services in Queensland: A quality improvement study assessing change in selected clinical performance indicators over time in a cohort of services (BMJ Open (2013) 3 (e002083))', BMJ Open, vol. 3, http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2012-002083corr1
2013
Gardner K; Yen L; Banfield M; Gillespie J; Mcrae I; Wells R, 2013, 'From coordinated care trials to medicare locals: What difference does changing the policy driver from efficiency to quality make for coordinating care?', International Journal for Quality in Health Care, vol. 25, pp. 50 - 57, http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/intqhc/mzs069
2013
Banfield MA; Gardner KL; Yen LE; McRae IS; Gillespie JA; Wells RW, 2012, 'Coordination of care in Australian mental health policy', Australian Health Review, vol. 36, pp. 153 - 157, http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/AH11049
2012
Gardner K; Bailie R; Si D; O'Donoghue L; Kennedy C; Liddle H; Cox R; Kwedza R; Fittock M; Hains J; Dowden M; Connors C; Burke H; Beaver C, 2011, 'Reorienting primary health care for addressing chronic conditions in remote Australia and the South Pacific: Review of evidence and lessons from an innovative quality improvement process', Australian Journal of Rural Health, vol. 19, pp. 111 - 117, http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1440-1584.2010.01181.x
2011
Gardner KL; Dowden M; Togni S; Bailie R, 2010, 'Understanding uptake of continuous quality improvement in Indigenous primary health care: Lessons from a multi-site case study of the Audit and Best Practice for Chronic Disease project', Implementation Science, vol. 5, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1748-5908-5-21
2010
Bailie R; Si D; Shannon C; Semmens J; Rowley K; Scrimgeour DJ; Nagel T; Anderson I; Connors C; Weeramanthri T; Thompson S; McDermott R; Burke H; Moore E; Leon D; Weston R; Grogan H; Stanley A; Gardner K, 2010, 'Study protocol: National research partnership to improve primary health care performance and outcomes for Indigenous peoples', BMC Health Services Research, vol. 10, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1472-6963-10-129
2010
Gardner KL; Sibthorpe B; Longstaff D, 2008, 'National quality and performance system for divisions of general practice: Early reflections on a system under development', Australia and New Zealand Health Policy, vol. 5, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1743-8462-5-8
2008
McRae IS; Butler JRG; Sibthorpe BM; Ruscoe W; Snow J; Rubiano D; Gardner KL, 2008, 'A cost effectiveness study of integrated care in health services delivery: A diabetes program in Australia', BMC Health Services Research, vol. 8, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1472-6963-8-205
2008
Bailie R; Sibthorpe B; Gardner K; Si D, 2008, 'Quality improvement in indigenous primary health care: History, current initiatives and future directions', Australian Journal of Primary Health, vol. 14, pp. 53 - 57, http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/PY08022
2008
Bailie R; Si D; Connors C; Weeramanthri T; Clark L; Dowden M; O'Donohue L; Condon J; Thompson S; Clelland N; Nagel T; Gardner K; Brown A, 2008, 'Study protocol: Audit and Best Practice for Chronic Disease Extension (ABCDE) project', BMC Health Services Research, vol. 8, http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/1472-6963-8-184
2008
Sibthorpe B; Gardner K, 2007, 'A conceptual framework for performance assessment in primary health care', Australian Journal of Primary Health, vol. 13, pp. 96 - 103, http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/PY07027
2007
Gardner K; Sibthorpe B, 2002, 'Impediments to change in an Australian trial of coordinated care', Journal of Health Services Research and Policy, vol. 7, pp. 2 - 7, http://dx.doi.org/10.1258/135581902320176403
2002
Sibthorpe B; Drinkwater J; Gardner K; Bammer G, 1995, 'Drug use, binge drinking and attempted suicide among homeless and potentially homeless youth', Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, vol. 29, pp. 248 - 256, http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00048679509075917
1995
Sibthorpe B; Drinkwater J; Gardner K; Bammer G, 1995, 'Drug use, binge drinking and attempted suicide among homeless and potentially homeless youth', Australasian Psychiatry, vol. 29, pp. 248 - 256, http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00048679509075917
1995
Raphiphatthana B; Maulana H; Howarth T; Gardner K; Nagel T, 'Digital Mental Health Resources for Asylum Seekers, Refugees, and Immigrants: Protocol for a Scoping Review (Preprint)', , http://dx.doi.org/10.2196/preprints.19031
Reports
add
Gardner K; Glennie M, 2020, Part 2 Evaluation of the One Disease, Crusted Scabies Elimination Program, University of New South Wales
2020
Gardner K; Olney S; Craven L; Blackman D, 2019, How can systems thinking enhance stewardship of public services?, Public Service Research Group, UNSW Canberra, Australia
2019
Gardner K; Trueman J, 2019, Submission to the Inquiry into the Maternity Services in the ACT. Public Service Research Group, School of Business, UNSW Canberra
2019
Gardner K; Van Gool K; Agostino J; Renehan C; Van der Linden N; Viney R; Dickinson H, 2018, Evaluation of the One Disease, Crusted Scabies Elimination Program, University of New South Wales. August, 2018
2018
Blackman D; Dickinson H; Gardner K; Buick F; Johnson S; Olney S, 2018, Submission to the Independent Review of the Australian Public Service. Public Service Research Group, School of Business, UNSW Canberra
2018
Dickinson H; Gardner K; Moon K, 2017, . Outcomes based commissioning and consumers: Stage 2 of an Evidence Check. A rapid review brokered by the Sax Institute for the NSW Department of Family and Community Services
2017
Edwards K; Gardner K; Van Gool K; Yu S; Kirby S; Harris M, 2016, Evaluation of the Western NSW Integrated Care Project: First Report. Centre for Primary Health Care and Equity, University of New South Wales
2016
Harris M; Gardner K; Powell Davies G; McDonald J; Findlay T; Kearns R; Joshi C; Jacques J; Alexander R, 2015, Commissioning primary health care: an evidence base for best practice investment in chronic disease at the primary-acute interface. University of New South Wales 2015.
2015
Powell Davies G; Powell Davies T; Gardner K; McDonald J; Harris M; Harris E, 2015, Strengthening health care in the community: A guide to decision making. Centre for Primary Health Care and Equity, University of New South Wales.
2015
Gardner K; McNab J; Sibthorpe B; Kalia Hehir K, 2015, Evaluation of the Continuous Care Improvement Project: Third Report. Canberra: Australian National University.
2015
Schierhout G; Panaretto K; Copley K; Gardner K; Hunt J; Brands J; Tynan M, 2015, Recommendations for a National CQI Framework for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care. Lowitja Institute.
2015
Gardner K; Parkinson A; Sargent G; Banfield M; Desborough J; Kalia Hehir K, 2014, Environmental scan of patient experience surveys used in primary health care. A report commissioned by the Australian Commission on Safety and Quality in Health Care. Canberra: Australian Primary Health Care Research Institute.
2014
Yen L; Parkinson A; Gardner K, 2014, Evaluation of the Medicare Local Implementation Adviser Role. Canberra: Australian Primary Health Care Research Institute.The Australian National University.
2014
Gardner K; Dwan K, 2012, ACCESS continuous quality improvement indicators and checklists. Canberra: Australian National University with Women’s Health Services, ACT Health Directorate. Australian Primary Health Care Research Institute,
2012
Gardner K; Dwan K, 2012, ACCESS evaluation plan: A trauma informed approach to providing inter-professional primary health care. Canberra: Australian National University with Women’s Health Services, ACT Health Directorate,
2012
  •  2019-2021 Member, Health Care Homes Evaluation and Data Working Group, Australian Department of Health.
  • Member, Research Advisory Group, Institute of Urban Indigenous Health.
  • Topic editor, International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health

Current research projects include:

  • Gardner K, Glennie M, Campbell T. Final Evaluation, One Disease Project: Elimination of Crusted Scabies in Remote Communities in the NT
  • Gardner K, Trueman J, Marsh S, Baldock E, Glennie M. Planned homebirth in the ACT: an archival study1976-2001
  • Olney, S., Gardner, K, Carey, G, Hanrahan P. Data Governance and the NDIS. Disability Innovation Institute Grant. UNSW. 
  • Ward J, Lovett R, Gardner K, Nelson C, Coombe L, Brown R, Turner L, Butler D, Clifford A, Mathews S. Transforming access, relational care, and primary health care in an urban Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population through patient-centred medical homes: a prospective observational cohort study using mixed methods.  MRFF Primary Health Care Research Grant, APP1200868 
  • Ingles J, Semsarian J, Yeates L, Gardner K, Adlard L, Aynsley B. A web-based intervention to support families following sudden cardiac death in the young. Sydney Local Health District, NSW Health
Gardner K, 2019, Primary Health Care Network Commissioning: Between a rock and a hard place.
2019