Dr Susie Moloney

Dr Susie Moloney is an Associate Professor in Sustainability and Urban Planning in the School of Global Urban and Social Studies and a member of the Centre for Urban Research (CUR), RMIT University.

Her research focuses on urban sustainability, land-use planning and climate change and the implications for policy and governance particularly at the local and regional scale. She has worked for both the public and private sectors in the urban planning and sustainability policy domains.

Over recent years she has worked on a range of applied climate change research projects with local and state government and community sector organisations. She is one of the co-founders of The Climate Change Exchange a not-for-profit hosted by CUR, that is committed to the goals of justice, equity and ecological sustainability in working towards a climate resilience future. The Climate Change Exchange aims to build the capabilities of organisations to make evidence-informed decisions and take actions that target the drivers of risks and vulnerabilities.

Susie has a particular interest in local climate change governance and has worked with and researched local governments and alliances for a number of years. Her post-doctoral research at the Centre for Design, RMIT as part of the Carbon Neutral Communities ARC linkage project (2007–2010),  incorporated both quantitative and qualitative methods to address the technical assessment and social and economic factors in community’s transition to carbon neutrality. This led to further research around changing social practices in the context of climate change.

She has partnered for a number of years with the Western Alliance for Greenhouse Action (WAGA) on the ‘How Well Are We Adapting? project (2014-2020) which involved co-designing a Monitoring and Evaluation Framework for Climate Change Adaptation for local governments (see http://adapt.waga.com.au/).

Susie along, with Professor Ralph Horne, was a co-investigator on a four year international comparative network supported by the European Science Research Council (ESRC) titled ‘Low Carbon Urban Transitions: a Comparative International Network‘. The network included researchers from the UK, China, India, South Africa and the US. Susie co-edited the 2018 book ‘Local Action on Climate Change: Pathways and Opportunities and Constraints’, Routledge , UK , along with Professor Hartmut Funfgeld (Freiburg University) and Prof Mikael Granberg (Karlstad University).

She has also co-authored a book about urban planning and sustainability in Melbourne with Professor’s Robin Goodman and Michael Buxton ‘Planning Melbourne: Lessons for a Sustainable City’ published by CSIRO in 2016.

Expert commentary on...

Urban planning, Urban policy and governance, Urban sustainability, Climate change policy and practice, Social practice change, Community engagement.

View Full profile

Related Content


Understanding and planning for the health and wellbeing impacts of climate change in the City of Greater Dandenong and the Mornington Peninsula Shire

2021 (ongoing)

This project brings together researchers and practitioners planning for equitable health and wellbeing outcomes for all in the context of a changing climate.

Evaluation of the Hot Spots initiative: local responses to heatwave health impacts


Evaluation of the Lord Mayor's Charitable Foundation (LMCF) Hotspots Initiative: place-based cross-sector collaborations.

Local Government Climate Change Adaptation Roles and Responsibilities under Victorian legislation: Guidance for local government decision-makers


The purpose of the project was to inform local governments on their legal roles and responsibilities under Victorian legislation for climate change adaptation.

How Well Are We Adapting


A climate change adaptation monitoring, evaluation and reporting tool, designed with and for Victorian local governments.

The Climate Change Exchange

2019 (ongoing)

The Climate Change Exchange is a project that is establishing a collaborative climate change research-practice network to meet the knowledge sharing, capacity building, and research needs of various government and policy stakeholders.

Possibilities and practicalities of more inclusive urban governance

2018 (ongoing)

Research on the governance of selected wicked problems in Melbourne, Bristol and Mannar (Sri Lanka) aim to flesh out a workable understanding of emergent, inclusive and multi-scale governance.

Implementing Sustainability in the Built Environment


An analysis of the role and effectiveness of the building and planning system in delivering sustainable cities.

Adapting aspirations & expectations on the coastal suburban & regional fringe


This Think Tank established a dialogue between local and state government, academic experts and the housing sector.

Kildonan Uniting Care: Sustainable Families Project


RMIT’s Beyond Behaviour Change group assisted Kildonan Uniting Care in developing a social practices approach to project design and evaluation.

News & Blog


Implementing sustainability in the built environment

09 August 2018

Why we should be challenging the status quo to increase the role and effectiveness of the building and planning system in delivering sustainable cities


August 2018 edition of The Urban Observer out now

09 August 2018

With Australia’s population reaching 25 million this month, the liveability of our cities has become critically important for our national prosperity and sustainability.


Sustainable cities? Australia’s building and planning rules stand in the way of getting there

27 September 2017

Australia’s building and land-use policy settings fall well short of what’s needed to make meaningful progress toward creating sustainable cities.


Poor policies block green housing goals: study

21 September 2017

Australian states are failing to deliver sustainable housing because of poor building and land-use planning policies, and a lack of enforceable standards, according to a new RMIT University report


New book maps Melbourne’s past, present and future

24 August 2016

A new book by RMIT urban planning experts delves into our city’s past to present a citizen’s handbook that unlocks the potential for shaping Melbourne's future.


The making of a climate emergency response: Examining the attributes of climate emergency plans

Kathryn Davidson, Jessie Briggs, Elanna Nolan, Judy Bush, Irene Håkansson, Dr Susie Moloney

Urban Climate

View Publication