From the CEO
Over the past three years, the CRC for Water Sensitive Cities (CRCWSC) researchers have been hard at work on 36 different projects. These projects are all contributing to the growing suite of knowledge and evidence that we need to facilitate the transition of our towns and cities towards water sensitive cities.
While this body of research continues to grow, some of our focus is now shifting towards the translation of research outputs into on-ground environmental, social and economic change.
As this focus shifts more towards translating research outputs into on-ground change, our collaborations and partnerships with government and industry participants will have increasing importance in shifting conventional practices and enabling transformation. All our stakeholders are encouraged to be part of the conversation around how research outputs are integrated into practice and ultimately, into on-ground change.
A few examples of the expected outputs from our research include the development of the Water Sensitive Cities Index tool, findings on industry perceptions and behaviours related to community water use, and the development of an algorithm to analyse “big data” from widespread utilisation of smart water meters to support intelligent urban water systems. We estimate there will be 76 outputs in total, produced from 36 CRCWSC research projects, each one in response to a specific industry challenge or need. To date the CRCWSC has started the process of translating research outputs into on-ground change through ten research synthesis charrettes.
The CRCWSC and stakeholders engage in a number of ways to bring about on-ground changes. However, effective collaboration requires all stakeholders to have some familiarity with the breadth of the anticipated outputs. The 2nd Water Sensitive Cities conference in Brisbane on 8-9 September will bring together many of our activities and outputs to date, across 50 presentations and 12 industry-led panels.
Following the conference, we will begin consultation with our participant organisations and key stakeholders regarding the development of Tranche 2 projects. We have done some early groundwork to prepare some of our major capital cities for the transition to water sensitive cities and deliberation of Tranche 2 projects. This has included a series of five workshops directed at envisioning a water sensitive Perth and a community-based envisioning of a flood resilient Elwood (Melbourne) together with the City of Port Phillip.
Engagement between researchers and CRCWSC industry participants has already seen the delivery of some impressive, innovative projects. I look forward to continuing the valued collaboration with our participants to guide the translation of research outputs into tools, technologies and frameworks that deliver significant positive impact and benefits to the Australian urban water management industry and, ultimately, the broader community.