Bob joined Resilient Organisations Ltd as a postdoctoral researcher for the QuakeCoRE project in 2016.
As an undergraduate he majored in economics and took a particular interest in development and international economics. His research career began in 2006 when he started a Master’s degree in Japan on international development and community disaster recovery. During his Masters he conducted fieldwork in Thailand to gather data from international and local NGOs working on recovery from the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami. Finding that the “build back better” principle was often cited but rarely actualised piqued his interest to undertake more research into disaster recovery. After graduation Bob was hired as an associate-level researcher at a research institute in Japan. In this role he carried out research on regional environmental issues in Asia-Pacific and coordinated capacity development projects. After the 2011 Tohoku earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear disaster he contributed to research and outreach activities related to the Tohoku disaster which culminated with a side session at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro in 2012.
Following this experience Bob decided to do a PhD on disaster law and policy and was fortunate to receive a scholarship through the School of Law at the University of Canterbury. There he completed a dissertation on emergency management law in New Zealand and the rationale for creating a new law and governance structure after the 2010-2011 Canterbury earthquakes.