CDERP was founded as an independent centre to focus on research to develop, improve and ensure that disability employment practice was built on an evidence base that supported true client choice and control. 

Research has highlighted that evidence-based disability employment practice today whilst well-intentioned lacked real systematic rigour in its application.  Our research programs focus on developing practice based on real-life evidence from the field – we listen, we research, we develop, we test and teach. Practice informed evidence and research – nothing ivory tower, just hard work in the field backed by applied research. Importantly we also use the evidence in practice ourself – field testing in the real world.

As an independent centre, we’ve undertaken research projects on behalf of the government and private clients looking at areas such as program evaluation, policy review, organisational change, staff capability and outcome measures to name a few. Our research partnerships are global involve some of the most renowned centres of research excellence and innovative employers.  If you would like to discuss your research needs, then contact us today. For information on some of our current research projects visit the Research page.

Our goal is the fidelity of practice to known evidence, underpinned by sound research into policy and practice. Applied Science at its best!

If you want leading-edge applied research supported by real understanding based on putting the research into practice, then consider partnering with us to gain exclusive access to our work and innovations. Contact us today.


Using our global network, we support organisational and systems change through undertaking consulting to service providers and government.

We provide consulting services to providers who are looking to become authentic open employment providers within the NDIS paradigm that supports real person-centred employment. Real open employment is about changing the organisation, not simply training staff – that never works. We have a multi-stage system that supports the journey to open employment for existing providers and for new providers we can help with our evidence-based practice model. 

It isn’t just theory and past experience that informs our work. It is the reality of delivering services to clients daily that informs our research and practice advice. Our Work First program delivers employment and mental health services to NDIS clients, families, and the general public – yes we walk it daily!

Research-based practice and practice-informed research are at the heart of what we do – it’s a virtuous loop. What we find, what we see and deliver informs our CDERP College programs ensuring that they are up to date with knowledge that will help you deliver innovative services to clients that maximise the support that the NDIS provides to clients to pursue meaningful careers and employment in the community.

The Work First Certified Employer program delivers organisational change by working with employers to change internal systems and provide employment opportunities. Work First addresses the supply and demand continuum using global benchmarking evidence and practice to support real change and employment pathways.


We provide expert training in Customised Employment supported by our global technical alliance with Griffin Hammis Associates, the leaders in Customised Employment practice.

Along with training partnerships with the University of Melbourne and our long-standing relationships and experience globally, it’s not hard to see why our training meets the ethical practice standards for Disability and Customised Employment.

We created the CDERP Certified CE Professional training program in response to a need to develop a stable and competent employment support workforce.  A workforce equipped to promote
positive outcomes for job seekers with disabilities who want to deliver Customised Employment with fidelity to the evidence and framework, along with committing to ongoing professional development. Expect nothing less than industry-leading training delivered to the global standard. 

For families and those that simply need professional development, we’ve created micro-credentials covering the four areas that make up Customised Employment. These programs are ideal for support staff and families who want a better understanding of the employment process and are keen to ensure that support staff have the vital knowledge and skills to support the employment journey.

These programs can be taken individually and are self-paced, but supported by our CE experts to ensure that real knowledge and skills are developed.

Why Choose CDERP

Organisations face unique problems that require solutions focused on your aims, clients and environment. At CDERP we use an Applied Research framework to deliver real world solutions, solutions that work in your environment.


Customised Employment

“Discovery is not……spending time on a laptop computer, administering assessments, taking notes, using checklists, ranking competencies or comparing. Discovery does not include predicting or guessing what a person can do or identifying jobs that are available in the labor market.”

Awesome People Talk About CDERP

“Phenomenal group of researchers and practitioners advancing inclusive workplace practices in Australia!!!”

September, 2018.

Thomas Golden
Executive Director
K. Lisa Yang and Hock E. Tan Institute on Employment and Disability
Cornell University, New York

“We’re in a process of changing our organisation completely, the practices within our organisation, so it has to come from the top. It has to be appropriately resourced and then I think having trusted partners for all stages. CDERP is a trusted partner that we can have someone as our guide to bring us through the process.”

Nick MacHale
Brite Services

“I just think that the impact of this first part of Discovery on you is quite significant and I would be right in saying that the outcomes that you would assume for clients would be so different to what you might have considered in the past.”

Provider staff member after first day of Customised Employment training

You have questions? Write to us and we will start a conversation.
Dr Peter Smith, Director

Contact Phone

1300 001 349



Office Address

Suite 16-17
70 Racecourse Rd, North Melbourne. Vic 3051

Office by appointment only

Have a question?

    We bring our global perspective and experience to your unique local challenges.


    At CDERP we use an Applied Research framework to deliver research and practice-based solutions to disability employment services.


    Suite 16-17
    70 Racecourse Rd., North Melbourne. VIC 3051
    Phone: 1300 001 349

    ABN: 12 609 029 558


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