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Transforming Systems

Transformation is about creating deliberate, deep change. It involves changing the underlying paradigms and structures to the way a system works, in part or in whole. Through this change, new patterns of thinking and practice emerge, with these patterns coalescing over time into a new approach.


In doing so, transformation creates a new identity for a system. Society needs transformation in many areas if we are to create a sustainable, fair and just world. There are few reliable or tested methods for driving transformation, it is an emerging area of both theory and practice. We have been at the forefront of developing and applying transformation processes in a range of settings, learning and improving our practice and approaches with our partners and collaborators as we go. We continue to develop and explore new ways of approaching and driving transformation in this emerging area, recognising there is no single recipe that will work everywhere. 

Melbourne Sewerage System Transformation

The Australian Resilience Centre has been a long term contributor of resilience, adaptation and transformation expertise to the Melbourne Sewage Strategy 2018. The 50-year strategy aims to transform the Melbourne Sewerage System from a single-use linear system to a circular re-use system by 2070, enhancing Melbourne's treasured liveability for future generations. 


Transformation for resilient landscapes and communities partnership

The Australian Resilience Centre participated in a five-year research partnership between researchers and natural resource management (NRM) practitioners collaborating on new approaches and different thinking to address intractable NRM and sustainability problems.


Ten partners have worked together on case studies from across Australia including the Murray catchment region of NSW, Far North Queensland, and other working examples from NRM regions in NSW, Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia.


The research explored the value of the concepts of resilience thinking, adaptive governance and collective learning, separately and particularly together, in tackling these issues and enabling transformative action. 

Selected publications from this research are provided below.

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Resource Sheets

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