Evaluation of Be Connected: Digital Literacies for Older Australians 

A 3-year research project, funded by Australia's Department of Social Services, in partnership with the Office of the eSafety Commissioner and the Good Things Foundation

Be Connected is an Australian Government initiative aimed at increasing the confidence, skills and online safety of older Australians in using digital technology.


Be Connected targets those aged 50 years and over who have minimal or no engagement with digital technology. It adopts a family and community-centred approach to supporting older Australians.


The Centre for Social Impact, Swinburne, and Social Innovation Research Institute has been commissioned to evaluate the national rollout of Be Connected and to determine the social impact of the program. The evaluation involes three phases of data collection that explore multiple stakeholders’ perspectives and measure the impact of Be Connected against a baseline of seniors’ digital inclusion, digital skills and social participation. The evaluation will conclude in 2020.

Funded Research Projects (Current)

Optimising the roles of online communities in rural resilience (ARC Discovery Project)

SANE Australia, Beyond Blue, Royal Flying Doctors Service, ReachOut, Care Opinion, Dementia Alliance, Murray Voices

Obesity in the news: Machine learning analysis of gender, health, socioeconomic status and stigma

Parnter: VicHealth

Data for Good Sandpit: Exploring the power of data collaboratives

Partner: Lord Mayor's Charitable Foundation, Goodcycles, Yooralla, Entertainment Assist, Co-Health

Be Connected Social Impact Evaluation

Partners: Department of Social Services (Australian Government), Good Things Foundation, Office for the eSafety Commissioner

Strategic Partnership, Australian Red Cross (Mapping humanitarian Action on Instagram)

Partner: Australian Red Cross

Funded Projects (Completed)

Free from Violence: Managing Elder Abuse in the Community (Project OPERA)

Partners: Eastern Community Legal Centre and Vic Govt. Department of Health & Human Services

Mapping Public Discusion of Family Violence against Policy (Project SOPHIA)

Partner: Departmern of Premier and Cabinet, Victorian Government

Peer Support Platform for People with Low Vision and Blindness

Partners: Guide Dogs Victoria and DXC technology company

Safety, risk and wellbeing on digital dating apps (ARC Linkage Project)

Partners: Family Planning NSW, ACON Health

Suicidal Thoughts & Self Harm Forum Analysis

Partner: Beyond Blue

60+ Online: Enhancing Social Inclusion through Digital Stories and Social Media

Partners: Telstra, City of Boroondara Council, Knox City Council

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