Everyday Catholic social services across Australia work to build the capability and potential of our communities. Often capability and potential is held back by disadvantage. Mapping the Potential research looks at how Australian communities experience disadvantage differently and by understanding these differences, service providers, government and communities can work together to improve the lives of all Australians.

The Research

Mapping the Potential research is driven directly by the local needs of Catholic social services Australia member organisations – seeking to address the underlying drivers of disadvantage in communities. Mapping the Potential has examined disadvantage using four drivers: education, economic, health and social factors. By mapping disadvantage through the lens of these four drivers we are able to understand where opportunities need creating so that communities might reach their full potential. 

Mapping the Potential, is a partnership between Catholic Social Services Australia and, 21 of its members and the Australian National University’s Centre for Social Research Methods. The research identifies locations of persistent disadvantage by suburb. However, to reduce the risk of suburbs being singled out, it reports by electorate.  Mapping the Potential research discovers that in nearly every electorate in Australia there are people experiencing persistent disadvantage. Mapping the Potential draws on the experience of decades of Catholic social service in Australia and combined with academic research excellence provides the capacity for better service delivery decision making.