Southern NSW Drought Resilience Adoption and Innovation Hub

Welcome to the Southern NSW Drought Resilience Adoption and Innovation Hub: a consortium of nine regional partners including primary producers, Indigenous, industry and community groups, researchers, entrepreneurs, education institutions, resource management practitioners and government agencies.

Charles Sturt University is proud to lead the Southern NSW Innovation Hub, one of eight hubs being established across Australia to combat drought and form the epicentre of user-driven innovation, research and adoption and facilitate transformational change through the co-design of research, development, extension, adoption and commercialisation (RDEA&C) activities.

Based at Charles Sturt University in Wagga Wagga, the Southern NSW Innovation Hub will enable regional stakeholders to have a voice in drought resilience activities, collaborate with experts, gain access to resources, and participate in adoption programs such as workshops, seminars and field days.

Program highlights

Economic resilience for an innovative and profitable agricultural sector

Social resilience for resourceful and adaptable communities

Environmental resilience for sustainable and improved functioning of farming landscapes

Events and news

Expanded Horizons webinar

>> Be inspired and challenged to do things differently <<

Let Southern NSW Innovation Hub introduce you to speakers from a range of industries, backgrounds and passions as we all look for novel thinking and new ideas. Expanded Horizons is a monthly webinar series giving you the space to think outside your industry, region and ‘normal’.

>> AUGUST WEBINAR >> How do social and behavioural factors shape livestock decisions during drought? Join Pete Fitzgerald in our webinar to enhance decision-making and drought resilience.
> Register now:

View past webinars

Past events

Science to Practice Forum 2022

The Future Drought Fund’s three-day Science to Practice Forum was an opportunity for the Southern NSW Hub and its partners to showcase different aspects of the Hub and its activities.

Watch recordings of Science to Practice Forum 2022

About the Hub

Southern NSW Region

The northern boundary of the Southern NSW Innovation Hub is described by a line from Broken Hill to Cobar, which joins the Macquarie catchment northern boundary near Quambone. We include most of the Macquarie River catchment, specifically the higher elevation areas in the upper reaches and Macquarie River-dependent irrigation areas, and lower reaches of the Darling River, south of 32 degrees latitude.

The Hub boundary follows the western and southern edges of the Hunter catchment and joins the northern edges of the Sydney Catchment near Kandos and meets the coast near the mouth of the Hawkesbury River. The Hub's southern and western boundaries are the VIC and SA state borders.

More information on the Australian Government Future Drought Fund

Come on a journey of Co-Design

Co-design is a keystone for the fundamental changes that the Southern NSW Innovation Hub is enabling across our communities . The Hub is implementing Co-design across our activities and footprint. This is an approach to designing “with” and not “for” or “to” people. On the front line is the Hub’s extensive network Knowledge Brokers is actively learning co-design principles and processes to then work in community with our people to identify and support projects and activities that will create more resilient agricultural systems, landscapes and communities across the region.

As a part of the co-design process, a series of articles is being compiled to share information, resources, answer questions and offer tips and tools to support co-design work across the Southern NSW Innovation Hub and beyond.

These regular articles are designed to challenge, teach, and motivate Knowledge Brokers to explore and use co-design in their work (and it will have relevance beyond the work environment too.) All updates are written by the team of Jo Eady, a human centred facilitator, strategic designer with a keen interest in social change based in Victoria and Dale Stringer, innovation specialist and chief knowledge broker with Southern NSW Innovation Hub.

Because the concepts of co-design have relevance beyond the Hub and the Knowledge Broker network, we’re making the articles available to all.

Baselining Drought

Our 'BASELINING DROUGHT - Developing a baseline understanding of farmer & community perceptions of drought' report stems from a key activity in the Hub’s Operational Plan to develop a baseline understanding of farmer and community perceptions of drought.

Download the report

Southern NSW Hub Director, Ms Cindy Cassidy, said the report focuses on the most recent drought examining key themes of agricultural productivity and profit, the impact on communities, Indigenous values and the landscape.

Ms Cassidy said this is an important starting point for a wider conversation about building resilience, given the potential for more frequent and intense droughts as our climate changes.

“We want to continue to hear from farmers and regional communities about their experience and what they need to build capacity to respond to future challenges,” she said.

Tell us here

Our Impact

These case studies demonstrate by example what the Hub is achieving and can achieve for farmers, communities and the innovation ecosystem in Southern New South Wales

Preparing with Hindsight

Reflections of real farmers from before, during and after drought.

Preparing with Hindsight was a community engagement project conducted by Southern NSW Drought Resilience Adoption and Innovation Hub partner - the Farming Systems Group Alliance – consisting of FarmLink Research, Central West Farming Systems, Riverine Plains, Southern Growers, Irrigated Cropping Council, Irrigation Research and Extension Committee and Holbrook Landcare Group. The project resulted in the collection of experiences of a range of landholders through the stages of pre-drought, in drought and drought recovery from the 2018/19 event. It will contribute to the Hub’s focus on working with farmers and communities to identify how we can increase our resilience to drought. A series of seven case studies was created as a part of the engagement project.

Get involved

As a regional stakeholder, the Southern NSW Drought Resilience Hub gives you a voice in drought resilience activities and an opportunity to collaborate with experts, gain access to resources, and participate in extension and adoption programs such as workshops, seminars and field days.

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or email the Hub direct on

> Get involved in the AgTech Calculator project

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Funding and collaborators


  • Charles Sturt University (Hub lead)
  • Australian National University (ANU)
  • Farming Systems Groups Alliance (represented by FarmLlink and include Central West Farming Systems, FarmLink Research Ltd, Holbrook Landcare Network, Irrigated Cropping Council, Irrigation Research & Extension Committee, Riverine Plains, Southern Growers, Monaro Farming Systems and Tablelands Farming Systems).
  • Local Land Services (LLS)
  • NSW Department of Primary Industries (NSW DPI)
  • Rural Aid
  • University of Canberra (UC)
  • University of Wollongong (UoW).

Partners of the Southern NSW Innovation Hub

Funding Acknowledgment

The Southern NSW Drought Resilience Adoption and Innovation Hub received funding from the Australian Government’s Future Drought Fund.

We are looking for prospective PhD candidates

Are you interested in gaining a doctoral qualification, while working with primary producers and industry partners? Are you interested in delivering new ways of thinking that help producers and communities vulnerable to drought become more resilient and to flourish? Would you like to receive a stipend of $28,854 per annum (tax free*) while you undertake your research?

The Southern NSW Drought Resilience Adoption and Innovation Hub is looking for a prospective PhD candidate. Applications close 5.00pm AEDT Monday 31 December 2022.

Find out more