Skip to main content

Climate disaster and adaptation

Responding and adapting to climate disasters
Multi-disciplinary research to build community resilience to disasters and climate change.

Climate-induced disasters are increasing in frequency and intensity. Communities and ecosystems are increasingly threatened, disrupted, and displaced. Mitigation and resilience are no longer sufficient and new climate realities require adaptation, and radical shifts in how diverse communities respond to disasters. 

This theme is focused on disaster response and adaptation planning with communities, businesses, governments and NGOs. Our work centres community-engagement in our approach to develop effective and just solutions to the growing experiences of climate change.

 We aim to:

  1. Partner with communities to understand the experiences and responses in and after disasters with a view to redesigning disaster preparedness and decision-making in crises.
  2. Explore and design community-led, just modalities of disaster preparation, response and reparations.
  3. Rethink climate futures beyond resilience, through long-term, just climate adaptation strategies.



Prof. David Schlosberg (Department of Government and International Relations)

Prof. Rosemary Lyster (Sydney Law School)

Prof. Dale Dominey-Howes (School of Geosciences)

Prof. Rosemary Lyster (Sydney Law School (Climate and Disaster Law))
Dr Arianna Brambilla (Architecture (Architectural Technologies))
Hon. Prof. Deborah Bunker (Sydney Business School (Information Systems))
Dr Emma Calgaro (School of Geosciences)
Dr Derwent Coshott (Sydney Law School)
Hannah Della Bosca (Sydney Environment Institute)
Assoc. Prof. Daniel Gozman (Sydney Business School (Engaged Research))
Assoc. Prof. Kurt Iveson (School of Geosciences)
Ms Patricia Lane (Sydney Law School)
Assoc. Prof. Murray Lee (Sydney Law School (Criminology))
Nicholas McKay (Faculty of Medicine and Health, Researcher Enterprise)
Dr Nader Naderpajouh (Faculty of Engineering (Project Management and Civil))
Prof. Luke Nottage (Law (Comparative and Transnational Business Law))
Prof. Susan Park (Department of Government and International Relations)
Prof. Rita Shackel (Sydney Law School (Criminology))
Anthony Sleigh (Sydney Business School (Geospatial Engineering))
Prof Gregory Tolhurst (Sydney Law School (Commercial Law))
Prof Jakelin Troy (DVCR Indigenous Research)
Assoc. Prof. Jing Yu (Sydney Business School (Finance))

Dr Aaron Opdyke (School of Civil Engineering)
Dr Fady Aoun (Sydney Law School)
Assoc. Prof. Penelope Crossley (Sydney Law School (Commercial Energy Law))
Dr Michael Davis (Sydney Law School)
Dr Eugenia Gasparri (Sydney School of Architecture, Design and Planning (Architectural Technologies))
Assoc. Prof. Nicole Graham (Sydney Law School (Property Law))
Prof. Melissa Haswell (DVC Indigenous Strategy and Services)
Dr Dagmar Reinhardt (School of Architecture, Design and Planning)
Dr Christine Winter (Department of Government and International Relations)

Prof. David Schlosberg (Sydney Environment Institute, Department of Government and International Relations)
Prof. Danielle Celermajer (Sydney Environment Institute, Department of Sociology and Social Policy)
Prof. Dale Dominey-Howes (School of Geosciences)
Assoc. Prof. Ed Couzens (Sydney Law School (Environmental Law))
Prof. Mary Crock (Sydney Law School (Public Law))
Prof. Roland Fletcher (Department of Archaeology)
Prof. Ollie Jay (Sydney School of Health Sciences, Heat and Health Research Centre)
Dr Pam Joseph (Sydney School of Education and Social Work)
Prof. Amanda Howard (Sydney School of Education and Social Work)
Assoc. Prof. Petr Matous (Faculty of Engineering (Project Management))
Prof. Phil McManus (School of Geosciences)
Liberty Pascua (Sydney School of Education and Social Work)
Assoc. Prof. Margot Rawsthorne (Sydney School of Education and Social Work)
Dr Blanche Verlie (Department of Sociology and Social Policy)

A Researcher Contact List (RCL) has been developed for the Climate Disaster and Adaptation Cluster as a tool for academic staff across Faculties/Schools/Departments/Research Units to reach out to others for collaborative projects on adaptation, disasters and resilience. Each researcher profile includes their role, department, research area, research projects, links to any industry and or government partners, and Disaster/Adapdation focus areas most relevant to their research expertise and interests. The RCL is a living document and is accessible via MS Teams to all researchers in the CDA.



Self organising systems to minimise future disaster risk

Examining community responses to shock climate events

To join the SEI Climate Disaster and Adaptation Cluster:


University of Sydney staff are to email Dr Johanne Brady


People from other universities, agencies and organisations are to submit an expression of interest to become and SEI member and include their interest in the CDA under the ‘bio’ section of the form.