End User representatives
Building community resilience to natural disasters is a complex challenge that spans many policy areas. This project, which has transitioned to its utilisation phase, tackled this intricate problem by delivering policy options that could help governments and emergency services to strengthen resilience in communities. The research identified barriers to community resilience and potential policy solutions that could be factored into the preparation, response and post-event phases of emergency management.
Three research themes were covered:
- What is ‘community’ and how can governments share responsibility with both communities and individuals?
- How can insurers play a more active role in communicating risk and encouraging hazard mitigation?
- Is there a better process or institution for effective lesson sharing after natural hazard events?
Findings revealed significant tensions in the shared responsibilities between governments exercising power and community empowerment; between the conflicting needs of insurers and their clients; and within traditional models of post-disaster inquiries.
In regards to effectively sharing lessons after an event, the team has proposed the trialling of restorative practices as a powerful alternative to adversarial post-event inquiries. Having identified these inherent tensions across the three themes, the researchers propose new policies are needed that could resolve or ease the tensions identified, or, in the case of disaster insurance, highlight the need to develop better models.
This could be applied in various contexts, including the selection of appropriate policy choices to encourage communities to share responsibility for emergency management with government. It could also help agencies to be better informed about how policy options can be tailored to encourage or facilitate desired outcomes.
Australia could trial restorative practices for post-disaster events by starting locally, such as for internal inquiries into accidents and near misses. If the system is effective and fosters learning without harm, then the practice could be applied to larger inquiries involving the emergency agencies and broader community interests.
While active research has concluded, further outputs are expected, including a book on disaster justice and promotion of the concept of restorative practices in post-disaster inquiries.
This research will identify legal, policy and governance barriers to more active community (including the business community) involvement in emergency management. The research will identify solutions whether in reform of policy and governance structures and processes or how they are applied in practice.
Encouraging insurers to share and communicate bushfire risk with policy holders.
Community resilience is dependent on more than just engineering and preperation
Building community resilience to natural disasters is a complex challenge that spans many policy areas. This project tackles it by delivering policy options that could help governments and emergency services to strenthen resilience in communities.
|Economics of natural hazards||Dr Veronique Florec||University of Western Australia|
|Decision support system for optimal natural hazard mitigation||Prof Holger Maier||University of Adelaide|
|Optimising post-disaster recovery interventions in Australia||Prof Mehmet Ulubasoglu||Deakin University|
|Scientific diversity and uncertainty in risk mitigation policy and planning||Dr Jessica Weir||Western Sydney University|