About RIEL

Northern Australia and south-east Asia are very special places and represent a fabulous setting for world-class environmental science. As befits the only university in the world named after the great Charles Darwin, CDU and its predecessors have built a very strong research track record in environmental science and ecology over the last 25 years, attracting many top scientists.

The Research Institute for the Environment and Livelihoods (RIEL) is a Tier 1 institute that consolidates CDU's environmental and natural resource management research. We currently comprise around 50 scientists and 10 support staff, we host and train some 75 PhD students (roughly one-third international), and we are assisted by about 75 honorary adjunct research fellows in partner institutions, industry and government.

We are multidisciplinary in our approach, integrating insights from the natural, physical, spatial and social sciences to explore the complex interconnections within and between social and environmental systems. We are also transdisciplinary, in that we often work collaboratively with intended end-users along the full spectrum from defining research questions through to applying results. Our livelihoods approach emphasises the relationships between people and country (including Indigenous people), in particular the way we derive a living from lands and seas, and how that affects the management of natural resources.

The Research Institute for the Environment and Livelihoods is building on solid foundations, with an exciting research agenda. We are working with our partners in northern and central Australia and the region, to develop new knowledge to:

  1. better understand the ecological functions and processes of unique ecosystems — terrestrial, aquatic and marine;
  2. inform decisions about how best to manage natural resources in government, industry and the community; and
  3. underpin innovation, in developing new more sustainable technologies, policies and approaches.

We welcome you to our website and encourage you to explore our people, our portfolio, our products, our partnerships and the places where we work. Please feel free to interact with us via social media, subscribe to RIEL news, or better still, come along to one of our great RIEL events.