Dr Yvette Bettini

Adjunct Research Fellow

Institute for Social Science Research
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences


Dr Yvette Bettini recently joined the Institute for Social Science Research as a Research Fellow, working on a project to understand better governance models for complex decision making as part of the CRC for Water Sensitive Cities. Prior to this she completed her PhD at Monash University, developing a framework and method to identify and understand adaptive capacity, and explored how it might be utilised to steer toward more sustainable urban water management.

Through her career Yvette has followed an interest in the interface between western society’s sustainable use and management of natural resources. During her Bachelors studies at the ANU she majored in human geography, focusing on community engagement and participation in natural resource management . Her honours research explored this topic by examining the formation and shaping of local ecological knowledge. Gaining a Graduate Diploma in Environment and Planning developed her understanding of local government’s role in natural resource management through strategic and statutory land-use planning. Five years as a public servant within the Victorian State Government built her knowledge and skills in public administration, policy development, program management, and fostering community participation in policy and water/catchment management.

Yvette's research span a number of fields and diciplines in sustainablity science, including natural resource management and governance, environmental policy studies, institutional perspectives, participation processes, and sustainability transitions. Her current focus is on extending her work in adaptive capacity through applied research to develop practical tools and methods for improving policy design and implementation, and environmental governance.

Research Interests

  • natural resource management and governance
  • adaptive capacity
  • environmental policy studies
  • sustainability transitions
  • applied research
  • social learning

Research Impacts

Yvette is committed to undertaking applied research in collaboration with practitioners. She brings her knowledge and professional skills and experience together to help translate academic insights into practical tools and methods. During her doctoral research she worked closely with the Western Australian Department of Water; ensuring the results of her analysis of Perth's urban water sector's response to a drying climate delivered policy and corporate strategy recommendations. Yvette has professional and research experience working with a range of public organisations; from Federal, state and local government departments, to water businesses, regional bodies and community volunteers.


  • PhD, Monash University
  • Graduate Diploma in Enviornment and Planning, Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology
  • Bachelor Science (Resource & Enviornmental Mgmt), Australian National University


View all Publications


Book Chapter

  • Bettini, Yvette, Arklay, Tracey and Head, Brian W. (2017). Understanding the policy realities of urban transitions. In Niki Frantzeskaki, Vanesa Castán Broto, Lars Coenen and Derk Loorbach (Ed.), Urban sustainability transitions (pp. 37-49) London, United Kingdom: Routledge. doi:10.4324/9781315228389

  • Bettini, Yvette, Rijke, Jeroen, Farrelly, Megan and Brown, Rebekah (2013). Connecting levels and disciplines: connective capacity of institutions and actors explored. In Jurian Edelenbos, Nanny Bressers and Peter Scholten (Ed.), Water Governance as Connective Capacity (pp. 129-149) Farnham, Surrey, UK: Ashgate Publishing.

Journal Article

Conference Publication

Other Outputs