Office for the Public Sector


Community Recovery Journey Lab

Community Recovery Journey Lab 

The Community Recovery Journey Lab is a new cross sectoral initiative aimed to better understand the impact of, and government response to, unforeseen events and disasters. This improved understanding will then inform and support purposeful collaboration in (re)designing better integrated responses to these occurrences.

The initial focus of this Journey Lab is on the experience of how individuals, businesses and communities are impacted by events, such as flooding, fire and storms. As well as considering how government (at various levels), services and communities respond to these events and the extent to which responses meet the needs, and expectations, of communities.

The project focus 

The work is currently focusing on the impact of and subsequent government response to the Riverland hail storm in November 2016.

The situation

Traditional approaches to government service and policy design are often siloed, driven by the role and expertise of a particular service provider, rather than the lived experience of the event of an individual or community.

Placing those who experience the event/service firsthand front and centre in service design and reform is a proven way to break down siloes and to align services to where they will create the most value.

Organisations involved (to date) 

  • Department for Human Services
  • Primary Industries and Regions SA
  • Department for the Environment and Water
  • South Australian Fire and Emergency Services Commission

The approach  

The Journey Lab methodology recognises that the impacts of an event, such as flooding, fire and storms, are extremely complex and will be influenced by a wide range of factors. The fact that responses and support services come from an array of government agencies and organisations adds a further level of complexity.

The Community Recovery Journey Lab project is a partnership between Public Sector Innovation Lab, Department for Human Services, Primary Industries and Regions SA, Department for the Environment and Water and South Australian Fire and Emergency Services Commission.  These agencies form the core project team who steer the work, which includes working with businesses, individuals, peak bodies, service providers and communities to understand events, their impact and the subsequent response.

Next steps 

To place those with first-hand experience of the event and its impact the Journey Lab is currently engaging with those who were involved to better understand what happened, how it was responded to (from a range of perspectives) and the extent to which the response met the needs of individuals, businesses and the community.

Back to top