News / Research and Publications

Augustin Bauchot passes first thesis milestone

Augustin Bauchot, a UQ|UP PhD student, has just passed the first PhD milestone at UQ. Congratulations, Augustin!

His PhD thesis is about urbanisation and climate change adaptation in Suva, Fiji.

 While Pacific Islands have become symbols of climate change vulnerability worldwide, counter-narratives valorising community resilience and Indigenous knowledge have been pushed forward in Pacific studies. This vulnerability/resilience debate has been translated in urban studies, as growing attention has been put on the fast-growing cities of the region and on the health, socio-economic or environmental problems they are facing. This has fuelled discussions on appropriate interventions to address jointly climate change and urbanization, and often led to proposed hybridizations of community-based and state-led action to address the impacts of climate change in Pacific urban areas. I will aim at complementing this debate with an increased attention on space, land, and urban politics, looking at how actors give ‘form’ to urban climate adaptation, even when bypassing ‘formal’ planning discourses and practices. In my case study of Suva, Fiji, one of the largest cities of the region in which climate change is increasingly translated into physical and political processes, my research will be based on the stories of local stakeholders and on the ‘objects’ they interact with in their attempts to organize urban space in the age of climate change. To conduct this qualitative study, I will aim at hybridizing Actor-Network Theory and the Fijian Vanua Research Framework developed by Unaisi Nabobo-Baba (2008) to produce an actor-led account of the assemblage processes taking place in Suva around these issues. 

Augustin is a QUEX student, doing his PhD at the QUEX Institute, a joint research centre between The University of Queensland and the University of Exeter in the UK. His supervisors are A/Prof Sonia Roitman and Prof Federico Caprotti.