How social research delivers cultural shifts in community understanding.
Since 2000 Kate has collaborated with the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation (FRDC). Discussions in 2008 identified a need to incorporate industry members, employers, employees, government and the wider community into FRDC’s research and its outcomes.
In 2009 FRDC’s board approved a Social Sciences Research Co-ordination Program tasked with demonstrating how social research could affect the acceptability of the industry as well as the adoption and implementation of research findings for industry and the Australian community alike. Kate’s strategic analysis and management capabilities together with her research, government and industry networks allowed a diverse range of stakeholders to be engaged. The Program brokered connections between researchers, industry and government people and agencies. Improved communication and collaboration delivered better outcomes for industry and the Australian community. Development of international networks with Canada, New Zealand, Europe and the UK contributed to sharing best practice methodologies. Projects and researchers were identified through collaboration, networking and industry engagement to support a cultural shift in industry and government towards a whole of community engagement practice.
The Program continues in its third iteration with Kate responsible for the foundation and establishment of the program in its first six years. Kate encouraged a younger researcher into the management role, to expand the Program’s exposure to ideas and approaches. Stakeholders identify the Program’s activities as an essential element in focussing efforts on the long term future of the fishing industry in Australia. Kate continues to work with the FRDC and the broader industry in a range of collaborations.