Making Choices About Water 16 Dec 2021.mp4


How, as leaders in our fields, can we foster a culture between us that creates better choices for water in 2022? Making Choices About Water is an invitation to attend an engaging discussion with water leaders in Australia. Speakers will share their perspectives about the values of water, its place in culture, the future of water management, and how we can collaborate to take better care of water, respecting that how water has been managed in Australia’s recent history has left scars on our country that will take many hands to heal. We hope to open up new ways for community leaders and water managers to work together to ensure a better future for Australia’s water. Join us as the speakers reframe the conversation regarding choices about how water should be valued and conserved as we renegotiate how it is allocated and governed.


Dr Anne Poelina is a Nyikina Warrwa woman from the Kimberley region of Western Australia. An active community leader, human and earth rights advocate, film maker and a respected academic researcher, with a second Doctor of Philosophy (First Law) titled, ‘Martuwarra First Law Multi-Species Justice Declaration of Interdependence: Wellbeing of Land, Living Waters, and Indigenous Australian People’, Master of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, Master of Education, Master of Arts (Indigenous Social Policy) Signatory to the Redstone Statement 2010 she helped draft at the 1st International Summit on Indigenous Environmental Philosophy in 2010. Anne is a 2011 Peter Cullen Fellow for Water Leadership. In 2017, she was awarded a Laureate from the Women’s World Summit Foundation (Geneva), elected Chair of the Martuwarra Fitzroy River Council (2018), Adjunct Professor and Senior Research Fellow with Notre Dame University and a Research Fellow with Northern Australia Institute Charles Darwin University. She holds membership to national and global Think Tanks. Dr Poelina is a Visiting Fellow with the Crawford School of Public Policy at the Australian National University, Canberra Australia Water Justice Hub to focus on Indigenous Water Valuation and Resilient Decision -making.

Katrina Donaghy is CEO of Civic Ledger. Prior to founding Civic Ledger, Katrina was a career bureaucrat spanning two decades in both state and local governments. When Katrina struck upon blockchain technology in late 2015, she knew immediately that it had a place in government. Katrina is a former Director for Blockchain Australia and founded the Women in Blockchain Australia chapter. She speaks extensively on why blockchain matters for governments. She is currently involved in shaping the Australian government’s National Blockchain Strategy and is a Blockchain Australia Fellow.

Dr Erin O’Donnell is a water law and policy expert, focusing on water markets, environmental flows, and water governance. She has worked in water management since 2002 in both the private and public sectors. Erin is recognized internationally for her research into the ground-breaking new field of legal rights for rivers, and the challenges and opportunities these new rights create for protecting the multiple social, cultural and natural values of rivers. In 2018, Erin was appointed to the inaugural Birrarung Council, the voice of the Yarra River. Erin has recently completed a consultancy for The World Bank, on water markets and their role in water security and sustainable development. For the last three years, Erin has been working in partnership with Traditional Owners across Victoria to identify law and policy pathways to increase Aboriginal access to water.

Dr Wendy Elford is an experience designer, knowledge wrangler and ‘coherence architect’ who is intrigued about the many ways in which we can improve the lived experience of work and community life. Wendy has nearly 40 years experiece in private industry, government, the built environment, health, education, community, agriculture and industry sectors. Her academic and advisory practice focuses on design integration for healthy interactions between people and things and how this connects to placemaking and the patterns of use over time. She weaves into the design of shared knowledge projects the values and intention that allow humans to work together and genuinely practice inclusive design. Wendy is passionate about story data, text modelling and machine learning.

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