Southeast Asia's global economy, climate and the impact of natural hazards from the 10th to 21st centuries

An Australian Research Council Linkage Project, 2011-2013

Southeast Asia's global economy, climate and the impact of natural hazards from the 10th to 21st centuries

This project's scope is uniquely broad and multidisciplinary, comprising collaborations between historians, archaeologists, seismologists and others. The aim is to analyse the development of south-east Asia's vast and sophisticated economic system within the context of human-environment interactions, over a scale and time period that has been inadequately investigated.

The ARC Linkage Team James Warren Wendy van Duivenvoorde Li Tana Alistair Paterson Gwyn Campbell Anthony Reid

This Australia Research Council Linkage Project undertakes the first broad investigation of the impacts of climate-related and other natural hazards (typhoons, floods, drought, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions) on the economy, society and history of Southeast Asia from the 10th century to the present. The project aims to reconstruct spatial, temporal and social patterns in vulnerability to the adverse effects of climate variability and natural hazards. The research will focus on economic, demographic and social trends, including food security, across SE Asia in association with climatic and natural hazard events, and will examine closely the sometimes catastrophic effects on human institutions and cultural values. In particular the team will collect qualitative and quantitative data from the largely untapped, extensive and accurate historical records, and integrate these data with climate change and geophysical models to overcome the lack of reliable sustained statistical records before the modern era. The team will combine these diverse data to clarify the complex and uncertain linkages and causality, both historical and current, between SE Asian people, their economy and environment

The project’s scope is uniquely broad and multidisciplinary, comprising collaborations between historians, archaeologists, seismologists and others to analyze the development of SE Asia’s vast & sophisticated economic system within the context of human-environment interactions, over a scale and time period which has been inadequately investigated. The project breaks new ground in the location and use of resources, and an interdisciplinary approach to problem and method. It will advance the knowledge base of discipline(s), provide a radically new history of the region, and a new basis for understanding complex interaction between human and natural forces.

This ARC Linkage Project represents a crucial Australian step of the global collaboration led by Professor Gwyn Campbell. It will initiate very important research on the Philippines, Indonesia and Vietnam and establish the systems for converging research on critical trade contacts in the Indian Ocean world such as Madagascar. Critically, it will create synergies and mutual benefits by bringing to the project as an industry partner a world renowned source of maritime archaeological expertise and public outreach that is actually located on the edge of the Indian Ocean, the Western Australian Maritime Museum.”