Curation, coproduction and case studies: Good practice in climate change adaptation.

18:00 Tuesday 28 May




David Rissik (Australia) 1; Anne Leitch (Australia) 2

1 - BMT; 2 - Griffith University

Climate change practitioners commonly seek guidance of what constitutes good adaptation practice and information about adaptation activities being undertaken by their peers (Palutikof et al. 2018). They are also interested in broad lessons from examples of leading adaptation practice (Webb 2018), which can serve to prompt adaptation across organisations and communities: through showing what is possible or to ‘inspire people to act’ (Bohman et al. 2018); or through helping to lead local efforts that ‘boomerang’ national and then local support (Fisher 2013). This need for examples of adaptation action, has resulted in the sharing of case studies through action/practitioner websites such as CoastAdapt (Palutikof et al. 2018), WeAdapt and AdaptNRM (Rissik et al. 2014). Case studies provide a means of communication and exchange of local contextual knowledge that is recognised as vital for adaptation (Adger et al. 2009). Yet, while case studies are an important source of knowledge sharing, there is a lack of an analytical approach to the development of case studies to help derive broad lessons that contribute to guidance and overcome barriers. At the same time there has been little consideration of how curation of these case studies can contribute to emerging theories of knowledge integration and coproduction of knowledge for climate adaptation.

This paper describes the approach used to define, and identify examples of, what constitutes good practice in climate adaptation in Australia. This was a two-step process, whereby first a targeted survey was used to identify examples of good adaptation practice throughout Australia. An expert panel then helped select appropriate examples, which were then further expanded into sixteen detailed case studies of adaptation approaches and experiences. These case studies were developed around key criteria that were deemed important in leading to good practice. We discuss the approach used to identify criteria, the design of the case studies on good practice, and the lessons learned from an analysis of the case studies. We also reflect on the role of local, scientific and practitioner knowledge, both within the case studies and in the synthesis of these case studies, and the implications of integrating these different types of knowledge for the coproduction of knowledge for adaptation.