About the Research Project

Project Background 

The alternative reporting options research project is a collaborative research partnership between RMIT University, University of Wollongong, Victoria Police, NSW Police, South Eastern Centre Against Sexual Assault, Brisbane Rape and Incest Survivors Support Centre, and other sexual assault services. It is funded by the Australian Institute of Criminology.  

This project is investigating the potential of anonymous sexual assault reporting options for criminal justice and victim-survivor outcomes. It is using Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria as three case study jurisdictions which have introduced anonymous reporting options for sexual assault. It analyses the use and potential of these reporting options and will offer new ways to enhance these mechanisms.  

The project has two key aims:   

  1. It seeks to investigate user experiences and the therapeutic potential of non-legal reporting mechanisms  
  1. It seeks to document the role of alternative reporting options in crime mapping and how informal, confidential disclosures might improve rates of formal reporting to police.  

The research is guided by the following research questions:  

  1. What are survivors’ experiences of using alternative reporting options?  

  2. What role have sexual assault reporting options played in identifying perpetrators, gathering evidence, and prosecuting accused persons?