Research projects

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Research projects

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Our niche area of research is societal adaptation—more specifically, understanding the social dimensions of regional environmental change. Our disciplinary focus is on the social sciences (eg geography and cultural studies). Through this focus, we make contributions to knowledge in the areas of:

  • sustainability science
  • resilience
  • adaptive capacity
  • social learning
  • social capital
  • adaptive management
  • natural resource governance
  • Indigenous knowledge
  • community livelihoods

While our work encompasses a range of disciplines and undertakes transdisciplinary research, our core focus is aligned with social, behavioural and economic sciences. Our focus areas can be applied to a range of sustainability issues such as coastal management, climate change, and water management (recognised as significant at local through to international scales)—in this way we can address real on-the-ground concerns of society and the environment.

The Sustainability Research Centre are working on a number of research projects internationally, nationally, and locally.

Project nameFunded byContact
Ecosystem-based adaptation decision support framework United Nations Environment Programme

Prof Tim Smith
Tsmith5@usc.edu.au

Community vulnerability and extreme events: development of a typology of coastal vulnerability to aid adaptation strategies ARC (Discovery)         Prof Tim Smith
Tsmith5@usc.edu.au
Multi-criteria approaches to coastal development Australian Department of Cimate Change and Energy Efficiency Dr Dana Thomsen
dthomsen@usc.edu.au
Climate change and adaptive water governance – CADWAGO Stockholm Environment Institute Prof Neil Powell
Npowell@usc.edu.au
Water and reef quality and human perceptions Asia-Pacific Network for Global Change Research and US National Science Foundation Prof R.W.(Bill) Carter
bcarter@usc.edu.au
Coastal Collaboration Cluster CSIRO Collaboration Fund Prof Tim Smith
Tsmith5@usc.edu.au
Inuit traditional knowledge for adapting to the health impacts of climate change (IK-ADAPT) Canadian Institute of Health Research Dr Tristan Pearce
Tpearce@usc.edu.au
Creative models of accommodation for older Australians in infill development ULDA, Diecke Richards, Churches of Christ Care, SCC

Dr Claudia Baldwin
Cbaldwin@usc.edu.au

Processing of Canarium indicium nuts: adapting and refining techniques to benefit farmers in the South Pacific ACIAR A/Prof Jennifer Carter
Jcarter@usc.edu.au
Sustainability indicators Sunshine Coast Regional Council Dr Dana Thomsen
dthomsen@usc.edu.au
Cultural resilience and customary fisheries Te Tiaki Mahinga Kai Dr Christine Jacobson
Cjacobso@usc.edu.au
National Climate Change Adaptation Research Network in Marine Biodiversity and Resources — ARN-MBR Research Association NCCARF Prof Tim Smith
Tsmith5@usc.edu.au

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Research teamProjectFunding body

Associate Professor Bill Carter, Associate Professor Neil Tindale, Dr Harriot Beazley, Luong Thanh Hai, S Thok and Suchai Worachananant

Coral reef and water quality status and community understanding of threats in the eastern Gulf of Thailand Asia Pacific Network for Global Change Research
Associate Professor Jennifer Carter, Dr John Moxon, Dr Maria  Raciti, Colin Blunt, Ioan Viji, Kim Jones and Professor Helen Wallace Developing markets and products for the Pacific Island and Papua New Guinea Canarium nut industry National Agricultural Research Institute
Associate Professor Jennifer Carter and Professor Helen Wallace Value chain analysis of forestry activities in the Pacific Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research
Associate Professor Jennifer Carter and Professor Steven Underhill Developing an integrated participatory guarantee scheme in the Pacific Islands in support of sustainable production of high-value vegetable crops Pacific Agribusiness Research for Development Initiative Research Activity
Associate Professor Neil Powell and Professor Timothy Smith Climate change and adaptive water governance (CADWAGO) Stockholm Environment Institute
Associate Professor Bill Carter Water and reef quality and human perceptions Asia-Pacific Network for Global Change Research and US National Science Foundation
Dr Tristan Pearce Inuit traditional knowledge for adapting to the health impacts of climate change (IK-ADAPT) Canadian Institute of Health Research
Associate Professor Neil Powell and Dr Pedro Fidelman Supporting governance institutions for adaptive capacity to environmental change Asia Pacific Network for Global Change

 

Research teamProjectFunding body
Associate Professor Bill Carter, Marcus Bussey, Scott Lieske, Troy Street and Dr Noni Keys Interpreting the landscape-human dynamic in Maleny, Sunshine Coast Sunshine Coast Regional Council
Associate Professor Jennifer Carter, Bo Carne, Jon Altman and Ann Fleming Identifying the key social and economic factors for successful engagement in aquaculture ventures by Indigenous communities Fisheries Research and Development Corporation
Associate Professor Scott Baum, Dr Kathy Arthurson and Professor Timothy Smith Climate change and extreme events: developing a typology of coastal settlement vulnerability to aid adaptation strategies Griffith University
Dr Anne Roiko Reclaimed water is viewed as an acceptable alternative water for augmenting drinking water supplies Australian Water Recycling Centre of Excellence
Dr Anne Roiko and Emily Rames Regional and remote water security: treatment, tools and training

University of the Sunshine Coast

Griffith University

Dr Claudia Baldwin and Caroline Osborne

Seniors perceptions of accommodation models

Church of Christ Care
Professor Neil Powell and Professor Timothy Smith Climate change adaptation for natural resource management in East Coast Australia Natural Resource Management Climate Change Impacts and Adaptation Research Grants Program
Dr Lila Singh-Peterson, Associate Professor Bill Carter and Professor Geoffrey Lawrence Building resilience by empowering communities: addressing the vulnerability of food supply chains following extreme weather events Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal

 

ResearcherProjectFunding body
Professor Tim Smith Climate change adaptation in South East Queensland CSIRO Collaboration Fund
Associate Professor Bill Carter Traveston Crossing Dam research partnership: a blueprint for developmental and operational arrangements for integrated public contact and education Queensland Water Infrastructure Pty Ltd
Associate Professor Bill Carter Ecological colonisation and habitat values and public outreach relating to the ex-HMAS Brisbane Environmental Protection Agency
Associate Professor Bill Carter Indigenous attachment, engagement and protocol in natural and cultural heritage management Burnett Mary Regional Group
Associate Professor Bill Carter Systems approach to regional climate change adaptation strategies in metropolises The Department of Environment and Heritage, through CSIRO
Associate Professor Julie Matthews Rethinking reconciliation and pedagogy in unsettling times Australian Research Council
Professor Tim Smith Adaptive capacity synthesis project The National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility
Professor Tim Smith Sustainability and corporate plan indicators for the Sunshine Coast Regional Council (SCRC) Sunshine Coast Regional Council
Professor Tim Smith Climate change adaptation in South East Queensland CSIRO Collaboration Fund
Associate Professor Bill Carter Traveston Crossing Dam research partnership: a blueprint for developmental and operational arrangements for integrated public contact and education Queensland Water Infrastructure Pty Ltd
Associate Professor Bill Carter Ecological colonisation and habitat values and public outreach relating to the ex-HMAS Brisbane Environmental Protection Agency
Associate Professor Bill Carter Indigenous attachment, engagement and protocol in natural and cultural heritage management Burnett Mary Regional Group for Natural Resource Management
Professor Tim Smith Systems approach to regional climate change adaptation strategies in metropolises The Department of Environment and Heritage, through CSIRO
Associate Professor Julie Matthews Rethinking reconciliation and pedagogy in unsettling times Australian Research Council
Professor Tim Smith Adaptive capacity synthesis project NCCARF
Professor Tim Smith Sustainability and corporate plan indicators for the Sunshine Coast Regional Council (SCRC) Sunshine Coast Regional Council
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