Queenstown Tourism Operators getting prepared

Queenstown Tourism Operators getting prepared

By Erica Seville (Resilient Organisations) and Trevor Andrews (Emergency Management Otago)
May 2019

This month, Erica Seville, spent an afternoon with the Queenstown Lakes district TORQUE group.  TORQUE (which stands for Tourism Operator Responders of Queenstown), brings together the largest tourism operators in the district, along with the Department of Conservation, the Queenstown Lakes District Council, and Emergency Management Otago, to collectively address the challenge of looking after up to 75,000 visitors in a major disaster.  These visitors underpin the district’s economic prosperity, but also create one of Otago’s biggest challenges in planning for a major event response.  In peak summer and winter periods, there can be up to two visitors for every local in area!

TORQUE members have committed to planning to look after their clients as well as their staff in a major event.  This includes making provision to shelter clients “in place” if necessary, and providing logistical support for moving and possibly evacuating affected people and communities.  This is underpinned by ensuring that their own staff are well prepared and trained for emergencies, and that their business continuity plans are thorough and well exercised.

In her session with the TORQUE group, Erica focused on practical strategies to use within their own organisations, and collectively as a sector, to build engagement and momentum for resilience building activities, and prioritise areas of focus.  “A well-prepared Tourism Operators sector can be a fantastic resource for the region.  They have a fleet of helicopters, 4WD vehicles, boats, and radio communications, as well as trained staff used to dealing with people and operating in extreme and often remote conditions.  There are also opportunities to leverage the skills and capabilities of visitors in the area at the time of an event.   Thinking through, in advance, how to appropriately tap into this visitor resource shifts our frame of reference from seeing visitors as a logistical challenge, to being a potential opportunity for supporting the Queenstown Lakes region during response and recovery.”

Resilience Shift Potable Water Primer published

Resilience primer for the water sector

We recently completed this primer, and the published version is now available to download from The Resilience Shift.

This primer is a brief document introducing the principles of resilience for the potable water industry. It is intended to assist those in the water industry to consider shifting practice to build the resilience of the water network.

Water is an integral part of our lives, both in its requirement for life, but also in its ability to create healthy communities. Building a resilient water network helps to enable current and future generations not only to recover from shocks and stressors but also to thrive. There is no one solution to the barriers that reduce resilience improvement efforts. This primer presents 17 recommendations to give resilience adoption a boost. These suggestions were inspired by 19 interviews with water sector operators and stakeholders and consideration of policy frameworks, advocacy bodies and academic reports.

Download the Potable Water Primer

Advice for farmers affected by Mycloplasma bovis

Advice for farmers affected by Mycloplasma bovis

The Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI) is offering a grant for advisory services to farmers affected by Mycoplasma bovis. Resilient Organisations has been identified as a pre-approved supplier for these services. If you are a farmer that has been affected by M. bovis and want help navigating through this challenging time, get in touch and we can work out how best to support you.

You are eligible to use the service if:

  • Your property is currently a Restricted Place (RP) under section 130 of the Biosecurity Act 1993, due to Mycoplasma bovis
  • Your property has previously been a Restricted Place (RP) under section 130 of the Biosecurity Act 1993, due to Mycoplasma bovis
  • You are a share milker or contract milker whose cattle have been impacted by being on a property that is, or was, an RP due to Mycoplasma bovis.

More information is available on the MPI website.

Ellie Kay wins GRRN Young Researcher Award

Ellie Kay awarded the GRRN Young Researcher Award

Congratulations to ResIlient Organisations Research Consultant, Ellie Kay on being awarded the Global Resilience Research Network (GRRN) Young Researcher Award for her presentation entitled "Embedding resilience measurement in policy and action" during the 2nd annual GRRN Summit in Freiburg, Germany.

Ellie's work seeks to operationalize the New Zealand Resilience Index as a measurement and visualisation tool to assist policymakers.

Watch her presentation below.

Managing Information and Data for a More Resilient New Zealand

Resilience to Nature's Challenges

Managing Information and Data for a More Resilient New Zealand

Resilient Organisations' researchers working on the Resilience to Nature's Challenge project have published a report on the Data Integration and Visualisation En Masse (DIVE) Platform: Lessons Learned and Future Pathways.

The Data Integration and Visualisation En Masse (DIVE) pilot project was funded by the NZ Centre for Earthquake Resilience (QuakeCoRE) and the Resilience to Nature’s Challenges (RNC) National Science Challenge – Kia manawaroa – Nā Ākina o Te Ao Tūroa, to improve researchers’ ability to address complex social problems, enabling New Zealand to become more resilient through data sharing, improved access to public data sources, and the analysis and visualisation of integrated data sets. Funding for the DIVE pilot project has now finished, and this report offers a final reflection on the lessons learned from the development and implementation of the DIVE Platform, and an exploration of future development pathways for collaborative management of DRR and resilience information in New Zealand.

Read more and download report

Supporting your team following the Christchurch mass tragedy

Supporting your team following the Christchurch mass tragedy

Bernard Walker, University of Canterbury

The mass tragedy in Christchurch affects many people. The injured and deceased are part of our Canterbury community. Some are work colleagues, and others are friends and family of workers. Most workplaces are affected.

The events bring a wide range of emotions, including anger, grief, loss, and deep sadness. At times people have strong emotions, while others can feel numb and switch off.

Anxiety also increases. Members of the ethnic groups at the centre of the events are experiencing a lot of uncertainty and anxiety. The wider community can also have a heightened sense of anxiety.

There can be changes in how individuals think about life, and how safe we feel.  These are major changes, and it will take time for people to come to terms with them.

Employers and leaders have a challenging role in this situation. To assist, the Organisational Resilience Research team at the University of Canterbury have put together some key guidelines from local and international research.

Download PDF



Thank you from the ResOrgs team

Thank you from the ResOrgs team

Friday’s events here in Christchurch have had a profound impact on all of New Zealand.  We echo the words of our mayor in expressing our disbelief that this could happen in New Zealand.   We are grieving alongside our community for all that we have lost.  We would like to extend our heartfelt thanks for all the kind messages we have received, especially from those who are unfortunately more accustomed to these events.  We stand strong together.


Ellie Kay shortlisted for GRRN Young Researchers Award

Ellie Kay shortlisted for GRRN Young Researcher Award

Congratulations to Ellie Kay for being one of just five young researchers invited to compete for the Global Resilience Research Network (GRRN) Young Researchers Award.

Ellie has been invited to attend the GRRN summit in Freiburg, Germany in April to present her research. The GRRN Young Researchers Trophy will be judged and awarded at the summit.

Read Ellie’s research abstract

Resilient Organizations now available in Italian and Chinese

Resilient Organizations book now available in Chinese and Italian versions

Erica Seville's book, Resilient Organisations: How to survive, thrive and create opportunities through crisis and change is now available in an Italian and Chinese version.

The Italian version is Organizzazioni resilienti: Come sopravvivere, propserare e creare opportunità al tempo della crisi (Italian Edition), published by Armando Editore and available to purchase through Amazon.

The Chinese version is 弹性组织: how to survive, thrive and create opportunities through crisis and change/(英)艾瑞卡·塞维利亚(Erica Seville), 钱峰, published by the People’s Oriental Publishing and Media; The Oriental Press. View publication details.

And for those wanting to purchase the English version, for New Zealand purchases it can be purchased online through our website or for international purchases via Amazon.

Expert Opinions on New Zealand Resilience Index

Resilience to Nature's Challenges

Expert opinions on the New Zealand Resilience Index

The Trajectories Toolbox of the Resilience to Nature’s Challenges Kia manawaroa – Ngā Ākina o Te Ao Tūroa National Science Challenge (RNC-NSC) has been working on the development of the New Zealand Resilience Index (NZRI), which measures place-based community resilience. The index uses a multi-capital model, including indicators of resilience in the built and natural environment, social, cultural, governance, and economic domains. However, some indicators of resilience may contribute more to the measurement of resilience outcomes than others. To understand this, we conducted an expert weighting exercise, eliciting the views of resilience and disaster risk reduction academics and practitioners working in New Zealand.

Indicators relating to the built environment were ranked as the most important, with building safety and functionality following a disruption weighted most highly (11.7%). This was closely followed by network infrastructure resilience (11.5%). Indicators related to social and human capital were also rated relatively high, with levels of community networks and sense of belonging and personal resilience capacities of individuals contributing 11.3% and 10.5% respectively. Indicators in the cultural and natural environment spaces were deemed as contributing less to resilience outcomes than built and social indicators. Experts weighted the item heritage and culture are valued and preserved as contributing the least (4.7%), followed by community access to shelters and welfare (5.3%), and availability of natural buffers (6.2%).


Table 1. Indicators and indicator weights following the expert weighting exercise.


Capital Indicator Part-worth utility
Built Buildings safety and functionality following a disruption* 11.7%
Built Network infrastructure resilience (roads, electricity, water and waste water) 11.5%
Social Levels of community networks and sense of belonging 11.3%
Social Personal resilience capacities of individuals (e.g., education, physical and mental wellbeing) 10.5%
Gov. Health system response capacity 8.9%
Econ. Household capacity to cope with economic disruption 8.9%
Gov. Quality of legislation and plans addressing hazards 8.0%
DRR Household emergency preparedness 6.7%
Econ. Economic diversity (businesses from several different sectors) 6.4%
Natural Availability of natural buffers (e.g., green space, undeveloped flood plains) 6.2%
DRR Community access to shelters and welfare centres* 5.3%
Culture Heritage and culture are valued and preserved 4.7%
* indicator not currently included in the NZRI due to a lack of nationally consistent data

Perhaps one of the more interesting weightings was the comparatively low level of importance given to community access to shelters and welfare centres. However, this could be explained by the higher rating of buildings safety and functionality following a disruption as arguably shelters are less likely to be needed if buildings are safe and functional following an event. It is a reactive rather than a preventative contributor to resilience capacities. The weights of all indicators included in the expert weighting exercise are outlined fully in Table 1.

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If you have any questions or comments about this bulletin please contact Dr Joanne Stevenson, [email protected].