Social vulnerability and adaptation

The social vulnerability and adaptation research theme examines the frontiers of knowledge about the risks of and responses to climate change. With a focus on social science expertise and a geographic interest in Australia, Asia and the Pacific, this research theme seeks to understand the social impacts of climate change and examine opportunities to adapt social systems in ways that are fair and sustainable.

The Social Vulnerability and Adaptation research program intersects with community wellbeing, human settlements and livelihoods, population and migration, culture and identity. Research from this program is committed to informing institutions and policies to manage climate change risks, including research on adaptation to sustain and enhance individual, community, social and cultural wellbeing.

Program lead

Professor Jon Barnett, Professor and ARC Laureate Fellow, School of Geography, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences

Early career researcher co-lead

Doctor Colette Mortreux, Research Fellow, School of Geography, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences

Grants and resources

Climate Change and Society

Related grants

  • ARC DP (2021) Catherine Phillips, Jennifer Atchison, Lesley Head. Understanding contested human-plant geographies for urban greening success.
  • ARC DP (2019) Celia McMichael, Uma Kothari, Karen McNamara, Alex Arnall. Everyday experience of climate adaptation in small island states.
  • ARC FL (2018) Jon Barnett. Future Islands: Catalysing Solutions to Climate Change in Low-Lying Islands
  • ARC DE (2020) Rebecca Runting. Robust strategies to achieve sustainable savannas under rapid global change.
  • ARC DP (2019) Lesley Head, Sue Jackson, Lisa Palmer, Morgan Robertson, Noel Castree, Ingela Stenseke. Social implications of market-based policy instruments for carbon and water.
  • ARC LP (2019) Karen McNamara, Celia McMichael, Carol Farbotko, Fanny Thornton. Transformative human mobilities in a changing climate (partnership with International Organisation for Migration, Pacific Conference of Churches, and UNESCAP).
  • ARC FT (2021) Carol Farbotko. Indigenous solutions to global challenges in the Pacific Islands.