ILWS - Charles Sturt University
ILWS - Charles Sturt University

Environmental Monitoring and Training for Aboriginal Communities. (2017-2018)


NSW OEH, $20,000


Associate Professor Skye Wassens, Associate professor Catherine Allan, Associate Professor Rachel Whitsed, and Dr Jennifer Bond

Research theme (s)

Rural and regional communities, and Environmental Water


The “Building knowledge of Country and measuring its health” project [working title] was funded by the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service until 2018, with in-kind support from the Faculty of Science and ILWS.

The project followed a participatory, co-research design, where Indigenous communities across the Murrumbidgee, Edward and Murray rivers explored environmental monitoring opportunities and challenges.

The research design included an initial participatory mapping exercise, which was then complemented by on-Country meetings with relevant industry practitioners.

The aim of the project was to work with communities to identify elements of environmental monitoring that they would like to pursue, and how this might be best supported in future learning and development of employment activities.

Project activities highlighted the complexity of the environmental water system and the challenges for Indigenous communities in accessing cultural water, in addition to other natural resource management issues such as the management of feral animals and access to Country.

However, the project also highlighted opportunities such as developing improved institutional collaborations, the role of environmental monitoring in the water management process and the various techniques and elements that it covers, and the potential for future training in the water governance space for improved inclusion.


A report is being finalised for NSW NPWS.


Many of the learnings and relationships from this program have been further developed and incorporated into the CEWO funded Monitoring, Evaluation and Research program for the Murrumbidgee system (2019-2022)


Associate Professor Skye Wassens email

Dr Jennifer Bond email

Albury-Wodonga campus

July 2019