Research begins at Natural Hazards Research Australia | Natural Hazards Research Australia

Research begins at Natural Hazards Research Australia

Release date

25 March 2022

The first projects of Natural Hazards Research Australia’s research program are underway, with each extending the research and supporting the utilisation of findings from the Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC.

While the development and contracting of a full research program is ongoing, this first set of targeted projects enable the Centre to respond to current events and maintain the continuity with the work of the CRC.

The five projects are:

1. Community led recovery: evidence, dimensions and supports for Community Recovery Committees

This project will improve the Self-assessment Tool for Community Recovery Committees developed in the CRC’s Community-led recovery project. Led by Prof Lisa Gibbs at the University of Melbourne, this research aims to better understand the various viewpoints on the fundamental roles and responsibilities of Community Recovery Committees.

2. Cultural land management research and governance in south east Australia

This project will develop research that includes Indigenous voice and representation in governance structures of institutions and land management agencies, and will develop a framework of broad research principles, protocols and processes to guide more ethical and collaborative cultural land management research. Led by Dr Timothy Neale (Deakin University) and extending the CRC’s Cultural land management in southeast Australia project, this research will provide insights into the views of Indigenous land and fire managers and others on the present and desired future state of engagements between Indigenous land and fire managers and state, territory and local government agencies.

3. Predictions in public: understanding the design, communication and dissemination of predictive maps to the public

This project will improve the design of predictive bushfire maps for public use. The Established and emerging uses of predictive services CRC project found support for providing fire spread prediction maps to the public. This study, led by Chloe Begg at CFA, aims to develop evidence-based guidelines and recommendations for how to design, communicate, and disseminate predictive maps to Australian communities exposed to bushfires.

4. Understanding the resilience of lifelines for regional and remote communities

This project will help improve the resilience of Australia’s lifelines by helping identify key data and research needs and will inform future work on lifelines at the Centre and other organisations. Taking a systemic approach, it will combine desk-top review, diverse stakeholder forums and an in-depth case study to explore the characteristics of (non)resilient lifelines and opportunities to reduce cascading, compounding and systemic climate change impacts. This project was the first project open for Expressions of Interest and was ultimately awarded to RMIT University, being led by Prof Lauren Rickards.

5. Connecting Indigenous people and the emergency management sector – effective partnerships

This project aims to facilitate open discussions between senior, knowledgeable and influential people from Indigenous communities and emergency management agencies across the north in order to further the collective understanding of opportunities for constructive change in emergency management engagement with Indigenous communities. Led by Ricky Archer at the North Australian Indigenous Land and Sea Management Alliance the project will hold a series of discussions with Indigenous community members in their region, reviewing research and other work done over the course of the CRC’s Indigenous fire and land management: impact and sustainability research.