Reconceptualising and supporting disaster recovery as growth

Lead Researcher Email Number Webpage
Professor Louise Harms + 61 3 834 49413 View page

Project Details

After the Black Saturday bushfires, psychosocial support was provided to people in geographically-affected communities. Localised services focused on supporting those experiencing posttraumatic stress, and other adjustment difficulties, reflecting current theories of adaptation post-trauma.

This project addresses two major inequities in psychosocial support for disaster-impacted people, arising from this current theorisation. These inequities arise as a result of (1) pathogenic definitions of recovery, which neglect posttraumatic growth experiences; and (2) geographic discrimination, which creates subsequent marginalisation from both services and research.

From interviews, personal and professional experiences of the barriers and enablers of posttraumatic growth will be documented.



University of Melbourne, Melbourne Social Equity Institute Seed Funding Grant

Research Group

Trauma Recovery and Resilience Research Program

Faculty Research Themes


School Research Themes

Sensory Neuroscience, Recovery and Rehabilitation Across the Lifespan

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact the research group leader.

Department / Centre

Social Work

Unit / Centre

Trauma Recovery and Resilience Research Program