News from the CRC
New online - March 2017
New journal articles and reports on CRC research are available online.
The Community understanding of the tsunami risk and warnings systems in Australia project has both a report and a paper in the Australian Journal of Emergency Management. This project adopted a qualitative approach to assessing people’s view about tsunami warnings and their ability to act on the. Interviews with volunteer, community, and maritime groups and organisations revealed that tsunami are perceived as a non-existent or very low probability event throughout Australia. A belief that no tsunami events had occurred in Australia (at least since colonial times), that major causes (e.g., seismic, volcanic) were absent, and a lack of regular government (local and national) and media discussion of tsunami reinforced this view. Consequently, the predominant belief about tsunami was characterized by risk rejection. Risk rejection resulted in respondents believing that no resources or effort should be directed to tsunami risk reduction strategies. Rectifying this view involves more than training.
Looking at bushfire management in northern Australia, a paper from the Scientific diversity, scientific uncertainty and risk mitigation policy and planning project illustrates how cultural, ecological, economic and political factors thoroughly condition hazard management and modes of intervention. Drawing on a case study in the Northern Territory’s Greater Darwin region, the paper suggests not only that examining such sociocultural realities provides new insights into hazards and their distribution, but also that attention to such issues is crucial to understanding our flammable future.
The Policies, institutions and governance of natural hazards project explores the implications of different framings of both “critical” and “infrastructure”, through two questions: critical how and for whom; critical when and at what scale? The paper argues that a better understanding of what is critical about urban infrastructure is not just recognition of its vulnerability and interconnectedness, but also of the key linkages between critical infrastructure and human and environmental system integrity and equity within the context of capitalist urbanisation.
PhD student Rachel Westcott has published a paper examining the experiences and interactions of firefighters, police, and rescue officers of the State Emergency Service with animal owners in bushfires, from the emergency responders’ perspective. The exploration of this interface aims to inform a collaborative path forward to strengthen shared responsibility, self-sufficiency, and reciprocal understanding to build trust and promote community engagement in future scenarios. The paper supports the potential for positive outcomes gained by reciprocal collaboration between animal owners and emergency responders.