Dr Alejandra Pinero de Plaza

Post Doctoral Research Fellow

College of Nursing and Health Sciences

place Sturt North (N218-4)
GPO Box 2100, Adelaide 5001, South Australia

Dr Maria Alejandra Pinero de Plaza is a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at Flinders University and the NHMRC CRE in Frailty and Healthy Ageing. She focuses on the design, implementation, and evaluation of knowledge translation interventions concerning health, behaviour, technology and participatory research.

In 2020-21, Dr Pinero de Plaza investigations have been accepted for publication or published in these Q1 journals:

  • Health Promotion International
  • Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services
  • The International Journal of Qualitative Methods, and
  • The Journal of Clinical Nursing

The most prestigious journals within a subject area are those occupying the first quartile, Q1. She also won the 2021 Consumer Health Forum video competition: ‘Big Ideas’ to improve the Australian health care system and has secured prestigious grant funding for most of her projects.

She brings a multidisciplinary background in health promotion, behaviour, and health. Her PhD investigated ways of mapping out healthy and unhealthy dietary patterns for global but targeted health interventions. In the field of marketing science, she investigated computerised ways of evaluating consumers' behaviours and their memory accuracy concerning brand recognition and product design.

As an Associate Investigator, she was recently awarded an NHMRC Partnership Grant of $1.2 million, in which she is contributing to the end user's engagements and KT aspects of RAPIDX AI. As a Chief Investigator, she has been awarded 2 Grants: 1. Concerning the marginalization of Frail, Homebound and Bedridden people in Australia; 2. About COVID-19 and the use of Digital Technologies within inpatients settings to improve the patient-clinician relationship. Recently, she has been co-creating a new Arts in Health certification and an Alliance across Colleges.


Post-Doctoral Research Fellow, University of Adelaide/ Flinders University (2019-current); NHMRC Centre of Research Excellence.

Doctor of Philosophy, Field of Research 111712 –Health Promotion; SEO: 920401- Behaviour and Health. Funded: Australian Postgraduate Award. Deakin University (2013-2017).

Master of Marketing Science, upgraded to PhD, Funded: Australian Postgraduate Award. University of South Australia (2010-2013).

Postgraduate training: Social Anthropology, Cultural Anthropology, Religion and Ecology. Venezuelan Institute for Scientific Research (IVIC). Advanced Studies Centre (2004-2006).

BD/ Master/ Licentiate in Mass Communication (Social Communication, Journalism, Public Relations & Advertising) Andrés Bello Catholic University (1993-1998).

Honours, awards and grants
    • A winner of the Big Ideas video competition to improve the Australian health system. Consumer Health Forum of Australia, 2021.
    • NHMRC Partnership Grant, AU.2020
    • Caring Futures Institute’s Collaborative Grant Scheme(COVID-19), Flinders University, AU. 2020
    • 2 Caring Futures Institute’s Accelerator Grant Scheme, Flinders University, AU. 2019
    • International & local government/tourism research conference bids / ISPCAN; AU 2018-2020
    • Australian Postgraduate Award, Deakin University, AU. 2013-2014
    • HDR Conference Grant, Deakin University, AU. 2013
    • HDR Support Grant, Deakin University, AU. 2013
    • MARS research top-up scholarship, University of South Australia. 2010-2012
    • HDR Conference Grant, UniSA, AU. 2010
    • Australian Postgraduate Award, University of South AU. 2010-2012
    • Medal of Honour - Scientific Journalism / IVIC. Vzla. 2006
    • Excellence Communications Award: Dr Humberto Fernandez Moran. Vzla. 2006
    • Scientific popularization recognition at a national level. QUIMBIOTEC, Vzla. 2005
    • Scientific Journalism Award: ‘Aristides Bastidas’; IVIC, Vzla.2004
    • Friskies advertising billboard campaign, McCann Erickson, Vzla. 2001
Key responsibilities

Dr Pinero has been impacting the consumer engagement processes with health research. E.g. nationally, co-creating the Consumer Engagement Framework and Consumer Register of SAHMRI; and, being part of the Expert Reference Group of the NHMRC CRE APPRISE and others. She has reviewed for MRFF Rapid Grants 2019 and the Journal of Public Health.

  • Working with the COVID-19 consumer group: as Member – Health Analytic Research Collaborative (HARC), Health Translation SA (HTSA): Consumer engagement working group.
  • Working with COVID-19 registry & biobank proposal approved by HREC: as Steering Committee Member – ‘Health Data Science & Clinical Trials’, Flinders University.
  • Ongoing work: Community & Consumer Engagement Advisor – Adelaide BioMed City Partners.
  • Working as part of Expert reference group member – Australian Partnership for Preparedness Research on Infectious Diseases Emergencies, APPRISE, / Centre of Research Excellence NHMRC.
  • Working with Health Consumer Alliance SA: COVID-19 Consumer Reference Group.

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