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Analysing COVID-19 & bushfire impacts in Local Government Areas (LGAs) in NSW - UTS Open
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Analysing COVID-19 and Bushfire Impacts in LGAs (NSW)

Free course


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2 hrs

This course uses health and wellbeing data collected at the local government level to understand the considerable impacts of different crises, including the most recent NSW bushfires and the global health pandemic of COVID-19.

About this course

This is a free, self-paced online course. 

This free course provides a comparison of the impact of the 2019 NSW bushfires and COVID-19 on local communities. The findings have been made available to the NSW Government and other stakeholders, to enable evidence-based decision making in areas such as rental hardship and affordability, remote accessibility and sentiment analysis.

Course structure

Through a case study approach, this course examines COVID-19 and the NSW bushfires - both considerable examples of real-world problems that governments may face. Through analysing the solution in depth, participants may identify problem solving areas within their own industry through applying the same methods.

Outcomes achieved through this analysis may be used for scenario planning in such areas as rental hardship and affordability, remote accessibility and sentiment analysis, related to different Local Government Areas (LGAs).

We have developed a visualisation system to highlight comparisons and use the GIS platform for spatial display. The indicators in all periods are also compared with “normal” days, prior to October 2010.

A coordinator-based visualisation system was developed for quick comparison between LGAs, considering the hardship of both case studies. Using spatial-temporal information for LGAs in NSW, the method can be generalised for any time-period and spatial level for decision-making.

Learning outcomes

This course provides an opportunity for participants to engage with the following learning outcomes:

  • The ability to explain how to generate key indicators for community health and wellbeing by using large data sets
  • The ability to explain the benefits of building a well-connected public data system for rapid response to crises
  • The ability to explain how data can be used to illustrate the public’s needs and experiences.


Who is this course for?

This free course is suitable for anyone who is interested in the impacts of the 2019 Australian bushfires and COVID-19 pandemic on health and wellbeing in NSW local communities and how analysis of data can generate insights and inform decisions.

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Acknowledgement of Country

UTS acknowledges the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation, the Boorooberongal people of the Dharug Nation, the Bidiagal people and the Gamaygal people, upon whose ancestral lands our university stands. We would also like to pay respect to the Elders both past and present, acknowledging them as the traditional custodians of knowledge for these lands.