I conducted research into community recovery after natural disaster – by interviewing key leaders of recovery, and by conducting fieldwork in 4 communities affected by natural disaster. I conducted this research between 2012 and 2016.
The purpose of this website has changed over time. Originally I envisaged that it would enable people across Australia to share their experience of their community’s recovery from natural disaster and to participate in my community based research. I hoped that this website would be for the benefit of all communities – to enable us to support one another, by sharing stories and information, and by doing so, to support the development of a stronger, more connected and more resilient Australia.
During 2013 I interviewed key leaders of disaster recovery across Australia. During 2014 I visited 4 communities affected by natural disaster:
* The Cassowary Coast (Qld) – the site of Cyclone’s Larry (2006) and Yasi (2011)
* The Lockyer Valley (Qld) – the site of severe flooding (in both 2011 and 2013)
* Dunalley (Tas) – the site of fires (2013), and
* Coonabarabran (NSW) – the site of fires (2013) and flash flooding shortly afterwards.
I spent time in these four Australian communities and interviewed residents about their disaster and disaster recovery experience. I have found that creating and maintaining the website has been useful as a way of introducing myself and my research to those I meet.
By participating in my research, community members have had an opportunity to share their experience of community recovery – with other communities, with governments, and with non-government organisations. By sharing their experiences, they are contributing to a discussion that will ideally help others to understand what works for Australian communities – to rebuild their own future, and ensure their ongoing resilience.