Dr Frances Cunningham

Senior research fellow


Doctor of Science (ScD), Johns Hopkins University, 1983; Bachelor of Arts, University of Queensland, 1971; Diploma of Education, Queensland University of Technology, 1967.

Approved level of HDR supervision at Charles Darwin University:

Principal Supervisor for PhD




Dr Cunningham is a senior research fellow in the Centre for Primary Health Care Systems, Division of Epidemiology and Health Systems. Formerly a senior health executive, consultant, policy analyst and health services researcher, Frances’ experience includes the public and private health sectors in Australia, the United States and the Pacific.

Her research work with the South Pacific Commission related to HIV/AIDS prevention in the Pacific. She has conducted a broad range of research, consulting and policy projects in the health, community and disability services areas, with a focus on the financing and delivery of services. Her recent research at the University of New South Wales applied network methods to evaluate the effectiveness of state-based, clinical networks. 

Frances works with colleagues in the ABCD National Research Partnership at Menzies on continuous quality improvement in primary health care for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Her research uses qualitative and mixed methods.

She is a fellow of the Australasian College of Health Service Management and a fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Frances has been a board director for St Vincent’s Private Clinic, The STaR Association, and the ACHSM-NSW.