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School of Engineering, Information Technology and Physical Sciences

Systems thinking to enhance performance of wetlands

Project Title:

Systems thinking to enhance performance of wetlands

Supervisor(s):

Dr Harpreet Kandra

Dr Jessica Reeves

Associate Professor Andrew Barton

Contact person and email address:

Dr Harpreet Kandra

h.kandra@federation.edu.au

A brief description of the project:

Decentralised water sensitive urban design (WSUD) systems such as wetlands are complex micro-ecosystems that operate with none to limited maintenance and monitoring. In most cases, there is a limited understanding of their performance/efficacy in relation to the objectives with which they were initially established. The proposed doctoral study aims to investigate a mix of wetland systems in the regional areas of Victoria using a systems thinking approach. Comprehensive assessments ranging from hydrology to water quality, index of wetland condition, ecological surveys, community surveys etc. shall help establish a not-so-well understood cause-effect relationship between these multidisciplinary variables. This shall eventually help in developing a performance assessment framework for evaluation of WSUD systems; better informed guidelines for design, operation, smart monitoring and maintenance of such systems; indicator based system to compare and benchmark comparable systems; asset management guidelines. The research project will run in association with the regional councils and would eventually help enhance engagement with local stakeholders.