Seed Funded Projects 2021

Four diverse projects that bring together interdisciplinary teams were successful in securing MSSI seed funding in 2021.

Mitigating biodiversity loss in urban settings through ecology and design

Once common across the Greater Melbourne Area, the native and flightless matchstick grasshopper Vandiemenella viatica now persists only in a few small reserves and private properties. This project aims to reconstruct habitat and pilot feasibility of species reintroduction, as well as assess the practicality of invertebrate translocations, and educate the public about native backyard invertebrates.

Project lead: Prof Ary Hoffmann

Indigenous Youth Priorities for Future Cities: Developing a Research Agenda

Indigenous youth are an underrepresented and important voice in resilient cities movements, and academia. Honouring connection to Country in cities, and responsibilities that Indigenous peoples feel to not only care for their ancestral lands, but also the people living on them, this project aims to co-create the first Indigenous-youth-led international research agenda on priorities for climate-resilient cities and a plan to implement through academia-cities partnerships.

Project leads: Assoc Prof Cathy OkeMaddison MillerDr Hannah Robertson and Dr Derlie Mateo-Babiano

China’s Palm Oil Business in Indonesia: Foreign Investor Driven Transitions, Sustainability Tensions and Local Negotiation

From 2013 to 2020, Chinese outbound investment in Indonesia’s palm oil sector reached a total of USD 53.8 billion. This project aims to examine the transitions and sustainability tensions brought to Indonesia by Chinese investment in palm oil via a place-based approach. Project outcomes will be used to inform strategies for more sustainable global production.

Project lead: Dr Monica Tan

Changing seascapes, changing lives:
A study of Indonesia’s Sea Toll Mega Project

The Sea Toll is a mega project changing the sea and coastal landscapes across the many islands of the Indonesian archipelago. Centring on the social and ecological sustainability aspects of the Sea Toll, this project seeks to examine intersecting themes around neighbourhood transformations; livelihood transitions; as well as household strategies and community-based activism to resist, cope and adapt to change.

Project leads: Dr Ariane Utomo & Naimah Lutfi Abdullah Talib