Kench PS, Ryan EJ, Owen S, Bell R, Lawrence J, Glavovic B, Blackett P, Becker J, Schneider P, Allis M, et al. 2018. Co-creating resilience solutions to coastal hazards through an interdisciplinary research project in New Zealand. Journal of Coastal Research. 85(sp1):1496-1500, 1495. doi:10.2112/SI85-300.1
Coastal communities face coastal hazard risk in the face of climate change. This risk is intensifying and accelerating. Communities need to be able to adapt in a variety of changing ways to reduce these risks now and over long timeframes. Developing ways for communities to adapt to coastal hazards requires a variety of experts to work together to produce interdisciplinary knowledge. Experts include scientists, policy makers and community members. However, there is little guidance and limited dialogue about how to go about co-creating this kind of research. In a first for Aotearoa New Zealand, a co-created research programme is underway. This is titled ‘Living at the Edge’. It aims to improve the resilience of coastal communities to coastal hazards. This paper provides novel insights into the complexities underpinning the initial stages of co-created research. It draws on practical experience from the Living at the Edge project. We explore who enabled and shaped the project, leading to shifts in the project objectives and framework. In the early stages of co-creation, integration, trust, and flexibility are fundamental. It is also important to build bridges between those involved at the beginning.