Jan 24, 2021

Spatial Framework for Assessing Environmental Livelihood Security


A consortium of WUN academics and regional partners are working together to provide holistic interdisciplinary expertise on the topic of environmental livelihood security. This concept stems from the challenges of maintaining global food security and universal access to freshwater and energy without compromising livelihoods under variable climatic regimes. Research in this field is limited and through our specialised network, we hope to advance understanding on this important environmental issue and provide tangible outcomes to inform sustainable development practices within the Asia-Pacific region. Bringing together international expertise will provide a core accumulation of knowledge from relevant disciplines (e.g. sociology, climate science, geography) to tackle the issue of environmental security at the livelihood-level. The topic is of extreme importance to communities where livelihoods have interdependency with the environment; a common phenomenon in developing nations of the Asia-Pacific. In a region where global changes are resulting in challenging localised impacts (e.g. increased frequency of extreme events), it is imperative that the academic community understand the social-environment system to ensure success in providing solutions for responding to climate change.

The WUN-RDF will enable the consortium to develop a comprehensive theoretical framework for the analysis of environmental livelihood security. This framework will provide the foundation for applying spatial-based methodologies to assess environmental security for livelihoods in the Asia-Pacific. Research will encompass an extensive literature review, publication of a white paper and a proposed special issue manuscript. A workshop will be held to bring together the consortium to produce the necessary baseline information to achieve these targets. Early career researchers will be actively engaged with the process and consortium expertise will be expanded further through conducting specialist sessions and ideas dissemination at strategic conferences.

Environmental Livelihood Security in Southeast Asia and Oceania: A Water-Energy-Food-Livelihoods Nexus Approach for Spatially Assessing Change

Read the White Paper prepared by this research group for the IWMI-CGIAR. 

Enviornmental Livelihood Security in Southeast Asia and Oceania infographic – The Environment.

Enviornmental Livelihood Security in Southeast Asia and Oceania inforgraphic – What is ‘Environmental

Livelihood Security’?

Enviornmental Livelihood Security in Southeast Asia and Oceania inforgraphic – Geospatial information for


Selected outcomes

  • €10,000 grant from the Pacific-Europe Network for Science Technology and Innovation (PACE-Net) Plus 2015-16 Fund:“The Role of Geospatial Information for Assessing Environmental Livelihood Security in the South Pacific” with Universities of Sydney (PI), Stirling, Auckland, Western Australia and South Pacific.
  • USD$120,000 grant from Asia-Pacific Network for Climate Change (APN) 2015-18 Fund: “Climate Change Adaptation in Post-Disaster Recovery Processes: Flood-Affected Communities in Cambodia and Fiji” with Universities of Auckland (PI), Sydney, Western Australia, South Pacific and Cambodian Ministries.
  • Published Sustainable development and the water–energy–food nexus: A perspective on livelihoodsEnvironmental Science & Policy 54: 389-397.
  • Published Environmental livelihood security in Southeast Asia and Oceania: a water-energy-food-livelihoods nexus approach for spatially assessing change. IWMI-CGIAR Paper. Colombo, Sri Lanka: International Water Management Institute.
  • Organised, chaired and presented a session titled ‘Sustainable Livelihoods and the Environment Nexus’ at the Institute of Australian Geographers Annual Conference in Melbourne, Jun-Jul 2014.