Research and Innovation Fund

About this Fund

The aim of the LGNSW Research and Innovation Fund is to support new areas of research, policy development and innovation for the advancement of local government in NSW. Its purpose is to fill gaps in the evidence base, explore emerging issues, promote informed discussion and debate, and encourage the development of research capacity within the sector.

LGNSW has allocated $50,000 to a research project that fulfils the above requirements, has broad sector application and importance, and can attract other project partners.

Councils were invited to put forward proposals for the 2019/20 Fund and fifteen (15) Expressions of Interest were received from Joint Organisations and metropolitan and regional councils.

An Advisory Committee assessed these proposals and three projects were short-listed from a strong field. The short-listed projects are:

  1. Move my Way – Giving the community real-time data to make better informed transport choices – Willoughby City Council

The project will use the Chatswood central business district as a living laboratory, deploying sensors to collect new data as well as collating existing data held by government, industry and the community. A local transport data community will be developed, with appropriate privacy and sharing policies to protect the rights of participants and the community.

The research project will create an open source, real time data catalogue and analytics toolkit. The project’s tools and products will enable better informed community choices that will help to reduce traffic congestion and promote alternative forms of transport. These tools and products can be used by multiple councils across NSW. “Move my Way” will be a demonstration project on how other levels of government and the private sector can work with a Council to deliver community outcomes.

  1. Suicide Hotspot Management – Northern Beaches Council

This project aims to support councils to effectively manage all aspects of death by suicide at potential ‘hotspot’ locations identified in their local government areas. An Action Plan will be created that clearly outlines the steps a council should take when a hotspot location has been identified, and then how to effectively manage safety and community anxiety.This project allows for Council to be a leader for its community.

  1. Developing a Maximum Benefit Framework for Urban Greening  Central Coast Council 

The project will develop a maximum benefit matrix for selecting the most suitable trees and shrubs to plant through urban greening projects. This relates to effective place-based planning based on leaf flammability, drought resistance, community acceptance and biodiversity benefits. The outcome of this three year project will include: a list of suitable and appropriate native species for planting that benefit conservation of biodiversity and provide bushfire mitigation through the establishment of ember curtains; improved understanding of how to engage with the community for large-scale urban planting programs; reduce naturalisation to invasion pathways for ornamental plants; develop best practice climate change mitigation; provide a framework for involving volunteer ‘citizen scientist’ in real world research.

Download a full description of the shortlisted projects.

Invitation to Choose or Collaborate – by Friday 15 November 2019

All councils in NSW are invited to indicate their support for one of the short-listed projects or express their interest in collaborating as an industry partner. To do so, please complete the online form by Friday 15th November.

Following further sector consultation, the Advisory Committee will announce the successful project in November 2019.

For more information on the Research and Innovation Fund, read the Information Pack.