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Personal profile


Professor Rebekah Brown is the Senior Vice-Provost and Vice-Provost (Research) at Monash University, responsible for leading the University’s research agenda, practice, integrity and compliance and contributing to research strategy and enhancing the University’s research performance and vision.

She is also Director of RISE (Revitalising Informal Settlements and their Environments), an action-research program working in the Pacific with communities, governments, partners and philanthropists to deliver solutions that benefit health, environment, and water and sanitation.

RISE is part of the prestigious Wellcome Trust's Our Planet, Our Health funding program, with support from the Asian Development Bank’s Future Cities program, as well as Australian AID and NZ Foreign Affairs and Trade. It is a Monash-led research consortia bringing together experts from Stanford University, Emory University, The University of Melbourne, University of Cambridge, Fiji National University, Hasanuddin University, The University of the South Pacific and United Nations University.

Rebekah has pioneered interdisciplinary research across the social and biophysical sciences in sustainable water management since early 2000.

Previously she was Director of Monash Sustainable Development Institute, a leading interdisciplinary research and education centre at Monash University working collaboratively with government, industry and philanthropists and to advance the knowledge, policy and practice of sustainable development.

She was instrumental in the establishment of the AUD$120M Cooperative Research Centre for Water Sensitive Cities comprising 86 partner organisations and over 170 researchers, and was its Chief Research Officer and inaugural Society themed Program Leader.

As a social scientist Rebekah has published over 100 papers in leading journals including Nature, Science, Global Environmental Change and Water Research. Rebekah is a consulting Editor to Global Challenges, and on a number of international Editorial Boards including Urban Water Journal and Environmental Innovations and Societal Transitions.

She has consulted widely across government and industry and presents regularly on interdisciplinary research approaches at conferences around the world. Her work is used extensively within the water and land development industry across Australia, and by international organisations such as the Asian Development Bank, UN Habitat and the European Union.

Since 2017 Rebekah has been a member of the Victorian Environment Protection Authority's Governing Board.

Rebekah holds a Bachelor of Civil Engineering (Honours) from Monash University and a PhD in Environmental Studies from the University of New South Wales.


External positions

Board Member , Environment Protection Authority Victoria (EPA Victoria)

Research area keywords

  • integrated urban water management
  • institutional analysis
  • urban water governance
  • natural resource management
  • urban sustainability
  • sustainable development
  • socio-technical
  • urban water management
  • cities
  • capacity building
  • transition
  • extreme events
  • past climates of australia
  • climate change policy
  • drought, fire and flood
  • adaptive governance

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.


Research Output

Interdisciplinarity: how to catalyse collaboration

Brown, R. R., Deletic, A. & Wong, T. H. F., 2015, In : Nature. 525, 7569, p. 315 - 317 3 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalComment / DebateResearchpeer-review

Open Access
94 Citations (Scopus)

Broad approaches to cholera control in Asia: water, sanitation and handwashing

Luby, S. P., Davis, J., Brown, R. R., Gorelick, S. M. & Wong, T. H. F., 29 Feb 2020, In : Vaccine. 38, p. A110-A117 8 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview ArticleResearchpeer-review

Open Access
2 Citations (Scopus)

Transformative agency in co-producing sustainable development in the urban south

Novalia, W., Rogers, B., Bos, A., Brown, R. R., Soedjono, E. & Copa Torrez, V., 2020, In : Cities. 102, 14 p., 102747.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Improving human and environmental health in urban informal settlements: the Revitalising Informal Settlements and their Environments (RISE) programme

Brown, R. R., Leder, K. S., Wong, T., French, M., Ramirez, D., Chown, S. L., Luby, S., Clasen, T., Reidpath, D., El Sioufi, M., McCarthy, D. T., Forbes, A. B., Simpson, J., Allotey, P. & Cahan, B., 28 May 2018, In : The Lancet Planetary Health. 2, 29, p. 29-29 1 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleOtherpeer-review

Open Access


  • 1 Editorial responsibility

Global Challenges (Journal)

Rebekah Brown (Guest editor), , Lara Werbeloff (Guest editor), & Rob Raven (Guest editor)

Apr 2019

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial work typesEditorial responsibility