What is a riparian zone? It seems a healthy percentage of water professionals could answer that question on a recent survey but general community understanding was much lower.

More than 210 water industry workers and community members took part in a survey about perceptions of water terminology, as part of research for Engaging communities with water sensitive cities (Project A2.3).

Researchers offered water professionals who took part in the survey a chance to win an iPad. The lucky winner of the prize was Jaime Hogan, an urban designer at City of Botany Bay.

The surveys showed stark differences between water professionals and community members’ understanding of some terminology. One example was the term ‘riparian’: more than 75% of the community members surveyed did not understand the term riparian at all (see graphic below).

Full results of the survey will be released in a report and industry note later this year. The research is intended to improve overall engagement in and understanding of water management issues.

Last updated: 19th Apr 2016