Bringing it all together - research synthesis

Parts of the research program of the Bushfire CRC were synthesized into a series of reports to draw together the key learnings from a range of projects. Synthesis reports on community safety research and fire behaviour research have been completed.

Community safety research

In April 2014, close to 40 community safety practitioners gathered at the Bushfire CRC and AFAC offices in Melbourne to review the past 10 years of Bushfire CRC research into community safety. The group discussed trends and identified the key themes that have emerged from the research.

The hands on workshop allowed participants from agencies right across Australasia including the fire services, State Emergency Services and Surf Life Saving Australia, to contribute their own thoughts about the research and to share community safety knowledge amongst their interstate and international colleagues.

Facilitated by Professor Timothy Skinner, who has spent the past 18 years undertaking research in promoting behaviour change, the two day event saw a number of key themes emerge and these are reflected in the final report by Professor Skinner. Download the report.

Fire behaviour research

This work, led by Dr Andrew Sullivan, undertook a survey of the fire behaviour knowledge currently used by operational fire behaviour analysts (FBANs) in Australia and New Zealand for the purpose of predicting the behaviour and spread of bushfires. This included a review of the science, applicability and validation of current fire behaviour models, an examination of the fire perimeter propagation software currently being used by FBANs, and a survey of those FBANs to determine current work practices when carrying out fire behaviour predictions.

The objective of the work was to synthesise current fire behaviour knowledge and practice and to provide recommendations as to which fire behaviour models, supported by the science and defining operating bounds, should be used for operational prediction of fire spread.

While no single fire behaviour model will ever be perfect, the output of models that over-predict rate of spread can be easily readjusted whereas the output of models than under-predict rate of spread can have catastrophic consequences. Download the report.

The Programs

Understanding the Risk

The work in this program seeks to understand the underlying risk exposure of the community and the things it values. .

Communicating the Risk

This program of work focuses on the communication of risk and threat: how are warnings and information best communicated?

Managing the Threat

This program considers the impact of fire events on important infrastructure, resources and the environment.

Research program 2003-2010

The Bushfire CRC, began its operations on 1 July 2003 with four inter-related research programs with a seven year plan.

A: Safe Prevention, Preparation and Suppression

B Management of Fire in the Landscape

C: Community Self-Sufficiency for Fire Safety

D: Protection of People and Property


The research outputs of the Bushfire CRC do not necessarily represent the views, policies, practices or positions of any of the individual agencies or organisations who are members of the Bushfire CRC.

Principal Scientific Advisers

The four Principal Scientific Advisers provide a scientific oversight of the whole research program.