Dr Paula Dootson

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Associate Investigator (CFE) & Chief Investigator (CDE)

Doctor of Philosophy (Queensland University of Technology), Bachelor of Business (Public Relations with Distinction) (Queensland University of Technology), Bachelor of Business (Honours) (Queensland University of Technology)

Paula is a Senior Lecturer at the QUT Business School and a member of the QUT Centre for Future Enterprise. Paula is an award-winning cross-disciplinary researcher in deviant consumer behaviour and digital transformation. She explores why everyday people engage in deviant, non-compliant behaviour and design human or digital interventions to encourage people to take more compliant, protective actions. Paula applies this disciplinary expertise in diverse domains, including non-compliance with emergency warnings, tax evasion, non-compliant public recordkeeping, scam victimisation, copyright infringement, and (dis)misinformation.

Her research focuses on providing businesses and policymakers with evidence-based solutions to real world problems. Paula’s extensive research engagement experience saw her obtain a number of awards.

  • 2020 Emergency Media and Public Affairs (EMPA) Australia Award for Excellence in Emergency Communication, Research Category: Winner for Addressing Conflicting Cues During Natural Hazards: Lessons from emergency agencies
  • 2019 Vice-Chancellor’s Excellence Award – Leadership Excellence
  • 2019 Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) Association’s premier award, the Excellence in Innovation Award
  • 2019 Emergency Media and Public Affairs (EMPA) Australia Award for Excellence in Emergency Communication, Research Category: Highly Commended for Conflicting Cues in Emergency Warnings
  • 2018 Emergency Media and Public Affairs (EMPA) Australia Award for Excellence in Emergency Communication, Research Category: Highly Commended for Communications and Warnings for Natural Disasters
  • 2017 Vice-Chancellor’s Performance Award for Research Impact
  • 2017 Named one of Australia’s Top Thinkers in the 2017 Conversation Yearbook
  • 2016 Outstanding Achievement in Research Collaboration Award, International Science Advisory Panel and Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, for delivering significant value towards improving the Emergency Management sector’s ability to communicate with the public during natural disasters; outstanding engagement with end-users; building a tremendous foundation for ensuring that this important research influences future practice; and the excellence of the project and its worthiness for ongoing support.
  • 2016 Vice-Chancellor’s Performance Award for Research Impact

To date, Paula has been awarded $3,281,038 in research (84%) and consulting (16%) funding and is published in cross-disciplinary outlets such as the Journal of the Association for Information Science and Technology, Journal of Services Marketing, Journal of Marketing Management, International Journal of Disaster Risk Reduction, Journalism Practice, and UNSW Law Journal.

Paula's internal leadership and engagement activities have focused on roles in (a) compliance and integrity (e.g., School Research Ethics Advisor; Academic Misconduct Committee), (b) community building (e.g., Trust CoP, SREA CoP), and (b) student recruitment. Her external leadership and engagement comprises membership on peak government /industry bodies including AFAC National Warnings Committee and the World Health Organisation’s Thematic Platform for Health-Emergency and Disaster Risk Management Research Network.

Paula is a a top-10 QUT author (of all time) on The Conversation and actively engages in externally disseminated podcasts (The Digital Week, Shopology), and news media (TV, radio, newspaper, online).

Paula was awarded a PhD from QUT with studies on why everyday consumers engage in deviant consumer behaviour. Paula also holds a Bachelor of Business (Honours) degree, where she was awarded a QUT Medal for academic excellence, and a Bachelor of Business degree from QUT.