• Adaptive doing was utilised for developing a shared understanding, of tropical peatswamp restoration and fire in Indonesia.
• Research participants described different understanding of tropical peatswamp forests and fire.
• Participants’ experiences, training, and culture (Indigenous and non-Indigenous) shaped their individual understanding.
• The shared understanding of the team was different than the individual understanding of each participant.
• Adaptive doing can help to link conservation practices, recognise different assumptions, decolonise research, and engage Indigenous and
Indigenous and traditional peoples, practitioners and researchers navigate complex social ecological landscapes. The importance of dialogue
across cultures, languages, disciplines, and forms of knowledge is increasingly recognised as needed in landscape restoration and environmental
governance at multiple scales. A process called adaptive doing was used in two workshops in South Kalimantan Province, followed by
remote collaboration among team members in Indonesia and Australia. Examining the breadth of differences in culture, language and knowledge,
and recognising assumptions and disciplinary training, enabled each participant to develop a shared understanding of tropical peatswamp forest
restoration and fires. The shared understanding extended beyond each participant’s original conception and provided a collective vision that
brought together the different knowledges, cultural and disciplinary backgrounds, while acting as a point of orientation for the work and purpose
within a research project. The experience gained through adaptive doing has led to important collaborative changes in the project and can
support future interdisciplinary teams to achieve collaborative practice change and a shared understanding of context.