The Green Infrastructure Research Group studies vegetation systems in the urban landscape. Urban green infrastructure is the network of natural and designed vegetation in our cities, in both public and private domains: from public parks, nature reserves and residential gardens to green roofs, facades and rain gardens.
Our research seeks to better design and manage these systems, and to better understand the ecosystem services they provide. We have a significant research program on green roofs and green facades for Australian cities with a focus on substrate development, plant selection and their energy and water regulation benefits. Similarly, there is a research focus on urban trees as a cost-effective and socially acceptable climate change adaptation strategy for communities. This research includes microclimate modification, integration with stormwater runoff systems, canopy cover change and tree biomass, growth and decay. We work closely with government departments and agencies, local governments and industry to ensure wide application of our research findings.
Our research is helping to advance the understanding, design and uptake of novel vegetation systems, such as green roofs and facades, in Australian cities. This includes documents targeted at informing practitioners, such as the Growing Green Guide and Decision principles for the selection and placement of green infrastructure to mitigate urban hotspots and heat waves, development of and participation in education and training programs, such as The Specialist Certificate in Green Roofs and Walls, and outreach and knowledge transfer activities aimed at changing behaviours in such a multi-disciplinary field. GIRG is Australia’s leading research and education group in the application of urban green infrastructure.