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Testing a strategic action framework: Melbourne's transition to WSUD
conference contributionposted on 2023-01-29, 23:11 authored by B C Ferguson, Fjalar de Haan, R R Brown, A Deletic
This paper provides the first empirical testing of a conceptual framework proposed as a basis for informing the design of strategic action for enabling a transition in urban water systems towards water sensitive practices. This Strategic Action Framework integrates transitions, resilience and institutional theories to provide insight into how actors can influence system dynamics to facilitate transitional change. The paper applies the framework to the case of stormwater management in Melbourne from 2000, in which mainstream practice has transitioned from traditional piped drainage for flood prevention to Water Sensitive Urban Design for improving stormwater quality before it enters downstream waterways. The research involved analysis of an existing historical case to identify how strategic action influenced the patterns and processes of change. The framework showed that the effectiveness of different types of strategic action depended on the varying dynamics during each phase of the transition. The paper further presents how the dynamics revealed in this case study will be modelled using a computer-aided strategic planning tool, DAnCE4Water. The societal module of DAnCE4Water is based on the Strategic Action Framework and is operationalised in modelling form to explore scenarios of city-wide urban water system change.