Richard Osbourne

Richard Osborne

Richard Osborne is Professor at Swinburne University of Technology, Melbourne, Australia. He is Director of the Centre for Global Health and Equity and an advisor to the World Health Organization. He works in areas such as epidemiology, health services research, implementation science and health policy.

For most of his career he has held prestigious Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) Fellowships that have focused on research methods that accelerate innovation, implementation and equity. In the past 10 years his team has had far reaching international impacts on the field of public health, particularly in health literacy development.

His team has developed health literacy surveys that have become widely used, including in national government surveys. His Health Literacy Questionnaire (HLQ) has been applied in over 700 studies including in population surveys in Australia, New Zealand, England and France.

His team developed and implemented new community-based co-design methods to build and scale up public health interventions. The most widely used method is called the Ophelia (i.e., the Optimising Health Literacy and Access) process. Ophelia was recently highlighted by the World Health Organization (WHO) as a process to accelerate impact on noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) and health equity globally.

With WHO’s Global Coordinating Mechanism for the Prevention and Control of Noncommunicable Diseases, Richard’s team develop the concept of Health Literacy Development which is included in WHO’s recent health literacy centrepiece: A 4-volume practical report called Health Literacy Development for the Prevention and Control of Noncommunicable Diseases (2022). This what-to-do and how-to-do report has been classified as a Global Public Health Good.

He has over 300 publications in international scientific journals – many of these papers have widely read and cited – having been cited over 50,000 times. He was named as a Clarivate Highly Cited Researcher in 2018 and 2021 (an award given to the top 1% most influential researchers globally). .