The Gambut Kita project is an interdisciplinary research-for-development project. A number of large research and academic organisations are involved from both Australia and Indonesia. Our research supports a range of stakeholders, including communities, implementing agencies and policy-makers. The project aims to effect change through knowledge generation and sharing, as well as through capacity building with connectivity to policy and practice. The research team comprises Indonesian and Australian scientists from a range of disciplines. Our research is being conducted on five specific objectives:

Fire Research

Fire research to prevent unwanted fires through managing the causes and drivers of peatland fire. The researchers are undertaking scientific investigation of fire behaviour in peatlands in order to improve existing fire detection and early warning systems for preventing and controlling fires. It is hoped that this knowledge will reduce adverse impacts from the burning of peatlands.

Livelihoods research

Livelihoods research to explore inclusive and sustainable livelihood options for men and women in rewetted peat, and the biophysical and social changes required to equitably transition to a rewetted peat system. Here, the project is seeking to identify profitable alternative livelihoods on rewetted peatland for smallholders currently deriving their livelihoods on drained peatland.

Soils research

Soils research to understand the effect of peatland restoration practices on peat characteristics and water dynamics. In this component, researchers are broadening the knowledge base about wet, drained and rewetted peat soils, in order to develop better soil and water indicators of peatland condition. This will allow for better targeting of peatland restoration efforts and inform the choice of methods applied.

Policy research

Policy research to understand and improve the community, institutional, social and policy aspects of peatland restoration and fire prevention initiatives and policies. Through this research, the project seeks to inform policy development and implementation at various levels for more equitable and sustainable peatland restoration and improved landscape management that will reduce fire occurrence.

Knowledge research

Knowledge research to understand and support the effective management and dissemination of knowledge for peatland restoration and fire prevention. Here, our researchers seek to identify and connect key stakeholders to the project’s research components, and to effectively convey its findings to communities and local and national authorities for adoption.