Awards celebrate BEL research star

12 September 2018

Richard RobinsonHospitality and tourism expert Dr Richard Robinson was among a roll-call of high calibre researchers recognised for outstanding research contributions at last night’s University of Queensland 2018 Research Week awards.

The UQ Business School researcher received a prestigious UQ Foundation Research Excellence Award (FREA) for his research focusing on the long-term mental health and wellbeing of young chefs and cooks, who often enter a work environment of “clamour and chaos”.

The FREA recognises Dr Robinson’s demonstrated excellence and promise of future success in research, as well as his leadership potential in his field.

Dr Robinson said his research project would help address the industry’s high dropout rate by understanding the relationship between chefs’ working conditions and their mental health and wellbeing.

“The intense, stressful work environment found in commercial kitchens can impact mental health and wellbeing and lead to poor coping choices such as alcohol and drug abuse,” he said.

“Through my research, I’m aiming, long-term, to develop accessible interventions that mitigate these serious risks young chefs encounter, provide support, and equip them with lifelong coping mechanisms.”  

Faculty of Business, Economics and Law Associate Dean (Research) Professor Victor Callan said Dr Robinson’s win was a testament to the world-leading research coming out of the Faculty.  

“BEL researchers like Dr Robinson are creating positive change on a global scale,” Professor Callan said.

“Dr Robinson has been with UQ since 2005. His innovative independent and collaborative research across a range of hospitality and tourism issues has attracted awards recognition and funding from local, national and international awarding bodies.

“Congratulations to Dr Robinson on his first well-deserved win in the extremely competitive FREA category."

The Research Week awards at Customs House celebrated the diversity and quality of the research undertaken at UQ, featuring projects spanning treatment of severe influenza, greenhouse gas emissions, flat solar battery storage and affordable housing construction.

Twelve researchers, three research teams and five research supervisors were acknowledged across three categories – UQ Foundation Research Excellence Awards, Partners in Research Excellence Awards, and Awards for Excellence in Higher Degree by Research (HDR) Supervision.

The awards were presented by Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Peter Høj and guest speaker Great Barrier Reef Foundation Managing Director Anna Marsden, along with UniQuest CEO Dr Dean Moss.

Learn more about Dr Richard Robinson’s research:

See the full list of UQ Research Week award-winners.

Media: Alysha Hilevuo,, +61 7 3346 9349, +61 409 612 798.