The learning vacuum of bushfire public inquiries — a review

By The Mandarin

Tuesday March 29, 2022

Examining recent bushfires in Australia, ‘Making Sense of Natural Disasters’ recommends a new approach to sensemaking and learning. (dedoma/Adobe)

Making Sense of Natural Disasters – The Learning Vacuum of Bushfire Public Inquiries (2022) is a new book written by Dr Graham Dwyer, Centre for Social Impact, Swinburne University of Technology.

This book is important for practitioners who work in the areas of emergency management, risk management, and public administration.

Examining recent bushfires in Australia, Making Sense of Natural Disasters recommends a new approach to sensemaking and learning focused on prospective planning rather than retrospective recommendations following a disaster.

Using empirical evidence from Australian bushfire public review processes, the book examines how emergency management organisations learn from past events and serves as a roadmap for practitioners to facilitate the implementation of complex public inquiry recommendations.

It offers important insights from in-depth research into the predicaments, problems and paradoxes which arise when seeking to learn from major natural hazard events.

This work is timely in the wake of the recent floods and explores how government and society can develop ways of working together so that they can continue to explore ways of learning how to learn from natural hazard events.

This is important as one way of building more resilient Australian communities. You can access the book here.


We need to get better at learning how to learn from bushfires

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