Australia is highly vulnerable to natural hazards – drought, fire, flood, storm or sea-level rise. There’s a dangerous and growing combination of climate change, urban change, technology hazard and community fragmentation.

The ‘Risk and Resilience in the Built Environment’ (‘R&R’) programme is a live exploration on the frontiers of resilience thinking and practice. Past experience shows we need to look beyond the simple building of defences: we need to look at how society works, learns, thinks and communicates. This is all framed as Resilience-III. This is a level of resilience which is based on the wisdom of communities and cities. It’s about the collective intelligence, the capacity of organizations, enterprises and markets, to learn, think ahead, adapt and innovate. It has applications in building design, landscape management, finance and property, urban infrastructure and many other areas. (For more on synergistics and the pathways for collective intelligence see )

The R&R program included so far, a major two day workshop, a follow-on consultation, and an ongoing resource for ‘Experiential Learning’ (see below). The overall goal is to build the capacity of future cities for resilience to hazard and disruption in Australia.

For more information, download the following documents:

R&R Briefing paper 1: introduction

R&R Briefing paper 2: methodology

R&R Briefing paper 3: Manchester case study

R&R Workshop

For the details of the workshop, see the following document:

‘Facilitator’s Cut’ draft report

This report has been compiled by the Facilitator, Joe Ravetz, from the results of the Risk & Resilience in the Built Environment (“R&R”) workshop in Melbourne April 27-28 2017. The report aims to raise a debate and questions for further research, not to make recommendations as such. The report is a synthesis of findings from a creative thinking process, as recorded by a series of data capture templates, and followed up in stakeholder interviews after the workshop. This draft report is the compilation of the workshop facilitator, and is completely open to question or critique from anyone involved. The official workshop report is pending. For further details see the ‘Experiential Learning’ site below.

Experiential Learning Project

Globally, the annual frequency of recorded disasters has increased fourfold since the 1960s. The effects of climate change, inappropriate use and management of natural and human made resources, have combined with increases in urban populations interacting with natural hazards. Human activities, particularly in urban areas, play a critical role in worsening vulnerability to natural hazards, particularly related to human settlements.  Cities and towns represent significant long-term human investments, and are increasingly the main site of catastrophic events. The concept of resilience is a key principle to act on these challenges.

This project aims to utilise the reflexive attributes of experiential learning as a key as a way of integrating resilience in the education built environmental professionals’ as a highly adaptable professional skill that can be applied in a variety of other contexts over time. It uses group learning and the development of a living learning repository to build and improve knowledge and skill.