Publication Details

Foster, H., Whittaker, J., Towers, B. & Handmer, J. (2013). Metropolitan Melbourne in 2021: changes and implications for the emergency management sector. The Australian Journal of Emergency Management, 28 (4), 9-14.


The Victorian Fire Services Commissioner (FSC) has embarked on a program of research exploring anticipated changes across Victoria over the coming decade. Titled 2021, the research aims to identify key changes taking place in Victorian communities and describe the likely impacts on the emergency management sector. This paper is the final in the series published in this journal. It outlines some of the key changes taking place in metropolitan Melbourne. Increases in the number of people, assets and infrastructure at risk and the increasing complexity of urban communities pose significant challenges for the emergency management sector. In particular, continued population growth due to overseas migration will require a capacity to communicate information and warnings to an increasingly culturally and linguistically diverse population, and to engage diverse groups in emergency preparedness, response and recovery. The large and growing number of people who visit the city each day for work, shopping and recreation adds to the challenge of managing all aspects of emergencies in the city's central business district (CBD) and inner suburbs.This paper does not provide a comprehensive list of possible changes and implications. A detailed report, which discusses a wide range of changes and their implications for emergency management and emergency services organisations, is available from the Victorian Fire Services Commissioner's (FSC) website.