× System Upgrade in Progress: Please note that publication listings may not be up to date until system replacement work is completed in Q3 2019.


Current Work

Dr Cara Beal is a Senior Lecturer in Environmental Health at the School of Medicine and Senior Research Fellow at the Cities Research Institute and School of Engineering and Built Environment, Griffith University. Dr Beal has active research interests in the field of environmental health and science, WASH (water, sanitation, hygiene) and environmental engineering. She also co-convenes the WASH course for the Masters program at the International WaterCentre. Her research topics include water resource management, First Peoples Environmental Health, remote and regional water-energy efficiency, smart asset management, social research on customer behaviour change and community engagement. Dr Beal supervises Honours, Masters and PhD students in these areas.

Current projects include:
Remote and Isolated Communities Essential Services Project (RICES) (GU)
Pacific Community Water Management + (IWC/GU)
Sustainable Water and Waste Management Project (Torres Strait Island Regional Council /GU)
Schools Water Conservation Project (CoGC & GU)
Scoping study on Safe Drinking Water and Sewerage Services in Remote Communities (WSAA / ISF / UQ / GU)

Member of National Organising Committee for IWA Small Water and Wastewater Systems conference, Perth, December 2019 https://www.swws2019.com/

Member the Scientific Advisory Board of the 2nd Latin American Conference on Sustainable Development of Energy, Water and Environment Systems http://www.buenosaires2020.sdewes.org


Expertise Keywords

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island communities
  • Environmental Health
  • Environmental science
  • Isolated and remote communities
  • Smart metering and intelligent water utilities
  • Water and water related energy monitoring and disaggregation
  • Water energy land nexus
  • Water sanitation hygiene WASH

Subject Area Codes

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Environmental Knowledge
  • Environmental Management
  • Water Resources Engineering

Country Affiliations

  • Brazil
  • Croatia
  • Singapore
  • South Africa
  • Spain
  • United Arab Emirates
  • United Kingdom
  • United States

Research Publications and Outputs

Recent Publications

Publications: 60 (Other: 60)

Funded Griffith Research

Engagement and Impact


  • Panel Chair
    CA 2018 Panel Session - Indigenous communities adapting,   NCCARF Climate Adaptation conference 2018,   2018,  
  • Panelist
    Water Research Australia Symposium (Water in the Bush Conference),   Australian Water Association NT Branch,   2017,  
    Invitation to participate in a Panel discussion - Water Research Australia Symposium - on water management challenges in remote communities
  • Workshop
    Fiji Australian Award Fellowship,   International WaterCentre (IWC),   2017,  
    Guest speaker and workshop facilitator at the Fiji Australian Award Fellowship
  • Presentation
    Water Planning and Regulation Branch meeting,   Qld Department of Resources, Mines and Energy,   2017,  
    Presenting research outcomes to government policy and water planners
  • Panelist
    DIGITAL WATER NETWORKS - Focus Group,   Australian Utility Week,   2015,  
    Invited Panel member to provide academic/research context for transformation to digital water utlities
  • Keynote Address
    UK Water Efficiency Conference,   WATEF Network & University of Brighton, UK,   2015,  
    Presenting international keynote address on water-energy nexus research at Griffith University
  • Panelist
    Toward the Digital Water Utility Conference,   Water Services Association of Australia (WSAA),   2014,  
    Invited panel member to presenting applied research outcomes from smart metering research
  • Panelist
    Queensland Urban Water Industry Innovation Forum,   Queensland water directorate,   2014,  
    Discussing the scientific rigour and benefits of data management and analytics for Qld water utilities
  • Workshop
    Innovations in Water Policy - Theory, Practice and Impacts,   Institute of Water Policy, National University of Singapore,   2013,  
    Invited to attend focussed workshop and present research findings on demand management from SEQ Millennium drought
  • Keynote Address
    IPIQ Seminar and Expo,   Institute of Plumbing Inspectors Queensland Inc.,   2013,  
    Invited keynote to presenting research findings on benefits of smart water metering in buildings to plumbing sector
  • Workshop
    Tapping the Turn - Water's Social Dimensions,   ANU, Canberra,   2012,  
    Invited to run a workshop: the What, Why, When and Where of Water. Discussing research findings from the SEQ residential end-use study

Learning and Teaching

Current and Past Courses

  • EH Health Management (3160MED)
    Convenor, In Person, Gold Coast Campus, Semester 1, 2019.
  • EH Health Management (3160MED)
    Teacher, In Person, Gold Coast Campus, Semester 1, 2019.
  • EH Health Management (3160MED)
    Teacher, In Person, Gold Coast Campus, Semester 1, 2018.
  • WASH (7941ESC)
    Teacher, Mixed Model, Nathan Campus, Semester 2, 2018.
  • WASH (7941ESC)
    Teacher, Online, Online, Semester 2, 2018.

Research by Higher Degree Supervision or Scholarship

Supervision Overview

Dr Beal is currently supervising:</br></br>Melissa Jackson - Thesis: Improving remote community sustainability and resilience: Applying local and technical knowledge in dialogue for potable water and energy system management in Indigenous communities. (Primary supervisor)</br></br>Abel Silva Vieira - Thesis: Residential hot water services in Australia:</br>Thinking beyond technology selection to enhance energy efficiency and level of service (Associate Supervisor)



Cara is a Senior Lecturer in Environmental Health (School of Medicine) and Senior Research Fellow (School of Engineering and Built Environment) and full member of the Cities Research Institute at Griffith University. Her teaching and research interests include environmental health, water, sanitation and hygiene, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples environmental health, Pacific Island community water management+, resilient & sustainable water and water-related energy management, behaviour change and community engagement, smart metering and big data, schools water efficiency management.  

Education and Training

  • PhD SoilSc PhD in Soil Science, University of Queensland 2002 - 2005
  • BSc AustEnvSt Bachelor of Science (Australian Environmental Studies), Griffith University 1993 - 1996

Academic experience

  • Senior Lecturer in Environmental Health, School of Medicine, Griffith University 2018 -
  • Senior Research Fellow, Griffith University 2015 -
  • Research Fellow, Griffith University 2009 - 2014

Awards and Honours

  • Pro VIce Chancellors Research Excellence Awards- Excellence of a Research Group or Team, Griffith University (Science Group) 2018 - 2018
  • Winner Best Paper/Presentation, NQ Australian Water Association Regional Conference 2018 - 2018
  • Finalist for Research Innovation Award, Australian Water Association, Qld Branch 2017 - 2017
  • Winner - Rural & Remote ICT and Life Sciences Award, Women in Technology 2016 - 2016
  • Mid-Career Accelerate Fellowship, Queensland Government 2014 -
  • Winner - Young Water Scientist of the Year, Co-operative Research Centre 2005 - 2005
  • Michael Flynn Award for Best Poster at OzWater Conference, Australian Water Association 2005 - 2005
  • Post Graduate Award in Excellence in Soil Science for PhD Thesis, Australian Soil Science Society Inc. (Qld Branch) 2008 - 2008

Professional experience

  • Urban Water Scientist (Water Cycle Science group, Department of Environment and Resource Management (Qld Govt) 2006 - 2009
  • Scientific advisor for Purified Recycled Water Scheme (part time), Queensland Water Commission 2007 - 2007
  • Senior Consultant, Envirotech Treatment Systems 2001 - 2002

Internal service roles

  • HDR Portfolio, Cities Research Institute Executive Group 2018 -
  • LGBTIQ+ representative, Griffith Sciences Equity Committee 2018 -
  • Ally and GU Sciences representative, Griffith Ally Network and Griffith Pride Working Party 2016 -

External service roles

  • Standards Technical committee member, Australian and New Zealand Standards AS/NZS 1546, 1547 2004 - 2016

Editorial roles

  • Editorial board member, Resources Journal (MDPI) 2016 -

External advisory roles

  • Gateway Reviewer for Digital Metering Joint Program Gate 1 Review, Victorian Department of Treasury and Finance 2017 - 2017
  • Water Expert Panel member - advisory panel to the Minister for Water and Energy Supply, Qld Government (DEWS) 2014 -

Professional memberships

  • IWA Full member, International Water Association 2010 -
  • AWA Full member, Australian Water Association 2007 -

Government representation roles

  • Water Expert Panel member - advisory panel to the Minister for Water and Energy Supply, Department of Water and Energy Supply 2014 -