Developing New Approaches to Community Resilience Assessment: Using technology, including web-based software, crowd-sourced data, & knowledge-based systems, as co-creative tools
Resilience across all sectors of society is imperative for global efforts to reduce the adverse effects of disasters and to build a society that is change-ready and seeking opportunities for future wellbeing. Building robust pathways toward resilience begins with assessment: gathering empirical evidence of what factors enhance resilience, under what contexts, and for which shocks; benchmarking a community's capacities, and monitoring resilience over time. The Resilience Trajectories work stream of New Zealand's Resilience to Nature's Challenges research programme is interested in exploring innovative, socially engaged, technology-based solutions to robust resilience assessment.
Applications are now invited for those wishing to pursue a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) by thesis addressing key challenges in the field of disaster resilience assessment, including:
- How disaster resilience assessment can be made more accessible to communities; local, territorial, and regional authorities; and national decision makers, and
- How technical tools, including web-based software, crowd sourced data, and/or knowledge-based systems, can be employed to make resilience assessment a robust and repeatable co-creative process.
The funding for this PhD Scholarship is part of the Resilience to Nature's Challenges research programme (RNC) – Kia manawaroa Ngā Ākina o Te Ao Tūroa –a priority research area under the National Science Challenge (NSC) umbrella. RNC is a New Zealand-wide research programme, launched in July 2015, with the aim of achieving, "transformative resilience, discovering and implementing new research-based solutions for our society, culture, infrastructure and governance to address factors that will enable New Zealand to thrive in the face of nature's challenges," (Jolly 2014).
Within the RNC research programme, Dr. John Vargo and Dr. Joanne Stevenson from Resilient Organisations Ltd. are co-leading the Resilience Trajectories work stream. This work stream aims to guide disaster resilience benchmarking and monitoring across a range of systems (e.g., rural and urban communities, horizontal infrastructure, regional economies), and will help RNC stakeholders identify barriers and opportunities to accelerate progress toward a resilient New Zealand.
The Resilience Trajectories work stream is looking to engage a PhD student to develop and lead the learning frontier of this project. The successful applicant will explore options for co-creative resilience assessment, develop appropriate tool(s) (e.g., web-based software for gathering, integrating, and visualizing resilience measures, or tools for crowdsourcing relevant data) in collaboration with the Resilience to Nature's Challenges researchers, and then prototype the tools 'in the field' with a case study community.
Location: University of Canterbury, Ilam, Christchurch, New ZealandScholarship. Stipend NZD$25,000 per annum stipend (+$7000 domestic tuition). Duration: 3 years. Starting Date: February 2017, or sooner if possible. Closing date for Applications: November 14, 2016 (please note applications will be reviewed upon submission).