University of Canberra
Research Projects
Social perspectives of nature reserves and developing urban areas
State/Territory: ACT

This new PhD research is a social study to support important ecological research underway at the Mulligans Flat-Goorooyarroo woodlands in northern Canberra, and the future management of these reserves.

The research will explore the relationships between people and nature at the urban-conservation interface and examine approaches to residential planning and design and community governance that facilitate successful collaboration and positive connections to nature.

Qualitative research methods will be used to discern the views of the urban residents living near nature reserves and also those of practitioners involved in residential development, nature reserve managers and community conservation organisations. While the focus is on the developing suburbs of Gungahlin adjoining the Mulligans Flat-Goorooyarroo reserves, the research will also draw on relevant experience and practice in urban communities elsewhere.

The research aims to provide developers, conservation managers and educators with an understanding about the values and perceptions of residents living near nature. An appreciation of values and potential social capacity can then create opportunities for targeted community learning and engagement in local conservation activities.

Geographic location:
Gungahlin – Mulligans Flat - Goorooyarroo
Research theme:
Settlements and Infrastructure
Fenner School of Environment and Society Australian National University
Funding agency:
ACT Government
Main researchers:
Kathryn Eyles
01 Oct 2010 - 30 Oct 2013