Staff Profile

photo of Prof. Alan Hayes

Professor Alan Hayes AM
Director, Australian Institute of Family Studies

BA(Hons) (UNSW), PhD (Macq), FAPsS, FAmPsyS


Professor Alan Hayes AM is the Director of the Australian Institute of Family Studies, taking up his appointment in September 2004. As of July 2013, he became responsible for the operation of the Australian Gambling Research Centre, an Australian Government initiative established within the Institute.

Professor Hayes also holds a professorial appointment at Macquarie University, Sydney.

With qualifications in Psychology, he has research and policy interests in the pathways children and their families take through life, and the role of families in supporting and sustaining development across life. The role of vulnerability and resilience in shaping developmental pathways has been a particular focus. Much of his work has focused on disadvantage, with a longstanding interest in prevention and early intervention. The impact of relationship breakdown on children is a particular interest, and the factors that impede access to opportunity continue to be a key focus.

Currently, he is a member of the Australian Government’s Family Law System Reference Group, the Building an Evidence Base for the Civil Justice System Working Group, the Longitudinal Studies Advisory Group (LSAG), the Child Aware Approaches National Initiative Steering Group, the Southern Cross University Centre for Children and Young People Advisory Board, the Victorian Government Department of Education and Early Childhood Development Expert Advisory Group, and the Work and Family Roundtable; as well as the Chief Justice’s Family Law Forum, the National Advisory Board of the Family Law Section, Law Council of Australia, and an inaugural member of the APS200 Leadership Forum.

He held a Chair of Early Childhood Studies at Macquarie University, where he was also foundation Dean and Head of Division at the Australian Centre for Education Studies (ACES).

He has been the chair, deputy chair or a member of four Australian Government Ministerial Advisory Councils, including the Commonwealth Child Care Advisory Council (CCCAC) (Member); the Australian Council for Children and Parenting (ACCAP) (Chair); the former Stronger Families and Communities Strategy (SFCS) Partnership - now the Family Support Program (FSP) (Deputy Chair); and the Australian Families and Children Council (AFCC) (Member). For the NSW Government, he chaired the committee that successfully established the Institute of Teachers in 2004 and was a member for several years of the NSW Child Protection Council.

An Alexander von Humboldt Fellow, he has been a Visiting Professor at the Free University of Berlin and the Pennsylvania State University.

Professor Hayes has been an Ambassador for National Families Week since 2007.

Professor Hayes was appointed as a Member of the Order of Australia in 2012 for service to the social sciences through the Australian Institute of Family Studies, as a contributor to policy research, and as an academic and author.

Selected recent publications