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Dr Johanna Nalau


Johanna Nalau

ARC Fellow
Cities Research Institute
+61 (0)7 5552 7419 (Work)
G31 3.07, Gold Coast Campus

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I am an adaptation scientist with a PhD in climate change adaptation at Griffith University based on the Gold Coast, Australia. My research is focused on understanding how, why and when people make decisions to adapt to climate change, and what role science can and should play in that process. That includes issues such as decision-making, policy development and implementation, limits to adaptation, and the gap that we often see between academic theory and real-world practical actions. I am a Lead Author for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 6th Assessment report in Working Group II Chapter 15 Small Islands, an Australian Research Council DECRA Fellow (2019-2022), Managing Editor for the Journal of Climate Risk Management, and Science Committee Member of World Adaptation Science Program. I also lead the Adaptation Science Research Theme at Cities Research Institute at Griffith University. All of these roles focus on understanding the core principles of climate change adaptation, and how adaptation science can play a positive role in evidence-based decision-making. I have a keen interest in leadership and management as I firmly believe that good leadership enables better lives and better decisions across organisations and scientific fields. To this end, I explore the linkages between leadership, climate adaptation and decision-making with a weekly blog at


  • Member
    Griffith Institute For Tourism2014 - 2019
  • Member
    Cities Research Institute2019
  • ARC DECRA Fellow
    Adaptation Science Theme Leader, Cities Research Institute, Australia3 Mar 2019