Darwin Living Lab – projects for 2020-21

December 16th, 2020


Heat mitigation, liveability & tropical design

Understanding community needs for urban green space in Darwin


Partners – DLL partners (CSIRO in collaboration with City of Darwin and NT Government and Commonwealth Government)

Purpose – Understand how different user groups in Darwin interact with green spaces and how their needs and preferences for amenities and benefits vary.


Benefits for Darwin – Inform development of green infrastructure strategies for Darwin that reflect the diversity of community values and needs. Green spaces in Darwin can be re-designed to be more functional (assist with cooling, usable), attractive and beneficial to city residents and visitors.

Project leader: Dr John Gardner (CSIRO)

Analysis of City of Darwin sensor network data and integration with AirRater

Partners – City of Darwin, NT EPA and Bureau of Meteorology

Purpose – Assess City of Darwin environmental sensor network data against NT EPA/BoM reference sites to prepare maintenance and calibration protocols, enabling reliable live reporting now and into the future.


Benefits for Darwin – Provide localised heat and air quality data for use in the AirRater application that can support heat stress guidance and air pollution for outdoor workers. Data can also be used in other data portals and provide ongoing evidence to report on spatial and temporal trends.



Project leader: Dr Erin Dunne (CSIRO)

Tracking Darwin baseline & implementation

Towards a Digital Twin of Darwin to monitor and navigate change


Partners – City of Darwin and Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Logistics (NT)

Purpose – Acquisition of spatial and temporal datasets for Darwin that can be used to develop a digital twin to monitor change, with an initial application focus on environmental economic accounting of the ecosystem services that are provided by Darwin’s green living infrastructure.


Benefits for Darwin – Evaluate the economic value and return of cooling and greening initiatives, through a data platform to understand, monitor and navigate change in Darwin over time. Measure change and impact of urban cooling and greening initiatives, including returns on investment. The Digital Twin developed  will assist Darwin city managers to be a truly Smart City through evidence-based decision making. Government, community and stakeholders will be empowered to resolve contentious issues.

Project leader: Dr Sorada Tapsuwan (CSIRO)

Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning (MEL) baseline data collection    


Partners – DLL partners (CSIRO in collaboration with City of Darwin and NT Government and Commonwealth Government)



Purpose – A framework for monitoring and evaluation of the DLL in order to support learning and inform decision-making within the DLL and to assess its impact and performance. It will monitor the development and impacts of the lab and trajectories of Darwin’s liveability, sustainability and resilience, working in parallel with the Digital Twin in building the data infrastructure and analytics for tracking change over time and informing decision making.


Benefits for Darwin – Maximising value for the DLL and all its projects, enables and informs partner learning for Darwin from interventions intended to cool and improve liveability that links to international best practice. Darwin and partners learn how to improve liveability over time and how to get better at it.  Provides an evidence-base for liveability outcomes that informs policy and planning (i.e. activation of public spaces, improved thermal comfort, reduced carbon emissions, more attractive and vibrant built environment).

Project leader: Dr Rachel Williams (CSIRO)

Larrakia-led Darwin biodiversity values 


Partners –  Larrakia Traditional Owners and Larrakia Rangers.

Purpose – A working list of Larrakia biodiversity values including habitats and native plant species, that can be considered for Darwin urban greening and protection. Collaborative study of Darwin’s biodiversity, baseline assessment and recommendations for maintaining community wellbeing and urban greening to enhance biodiversity.


Benefits for Darwin – Darwin’s unique sense of place is developed through the lens of engagement with Larrakia Traditional Owners and the Larrakia rangers to incorporate Indigenous knowledge and understanding how biodiversity can enhance wellbeing and urban greening.


Project leader: Dr Adam Liedloff (CSIRO)