Adaptive Doing in Tarerer/Kelly Swamp

  • Andrea RawlukEmail author
  • Ruth Beilin
  • Helena Bender
  • Rebecca Ford


In this chapter, we illustrate the four phases of the ‘adaptive doing’ process, including our engagement in the agora (described in Chapter  4) to reach a new shared understanding of Tarerer/Kelly Swamp. We discuss the triggers for entering the agora and preparations for being in that space. We apply three reframing tools that foster critical reflection—the 4 Is (interruption, interrogation, interaction, integration), assemblage, and the concept of the eternally unfolding present. The 4 Is revealed implications in the site’s naming along with the structure and function of the system. Creating assemblages helped to re-consider the relationships formed between two focal clusters, migratory birds and farming. The concept of the eternally unfolding present assisted our understanding of the impact of practices in the present, in the same two focal clusters. Finally, we return to our practice changed. We demonstrate that adaptive doing and the agora are catalysts for a new generation of social ecological research that sees participants honouring their disciplinary foundations, whilst being ready to change and collaborate within each new social ecological system and acting now for social ecological justice and change.


Practice Adaptive doing Social ecological systems Reframing tools The 4 Is Assemblage The eternally unfolding present 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Andrea Rawluk
    • 1
    Email author
  • Ruth Beilin
    • 1
  • Helena Bender
    • 1
  • Rebecca Ford
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Ecosystem and Forest SciencesUniversity of MelbourneParkvilleAustralia

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