Researcher biography

Project title: Sustainable Disaster Recovery: Evidence from Displaced Households in Nepal, China and New Zealand, the Asia-Pacific region

Duration: 2015.07-2018.12

Qualification: MA, Sichuan University

Research interests

Ms Lulu HE’s major research interest is global environmental change, sustainable development, disaster resilience, disaster-induced population displacement, and disaster governance. Her particular interest is people’s recovery from the impacts of disaster events and the ensuing government policies. A combination of quantitative and qualitative approaches is employed to collect and process data for her thesis project.


Lulu HE is a PhD candidate at School of Earth and Environmental Sciences (SEES), Faculty of Science, the University of Queensland. Before being enrolled with a full scholarship in SEES in 2015, she obtained BA and MA in her home country China. Experiencing a major earthquake herself at her hometown, she has been studying post-disaster recovery, and interactions between the human system and disaster-induced environmental changes since 2010.

Lulu HE has practical experience in working under an international circumstance in Asian-Pacific countries. She conducts research in Nepal, China and New Zealand. During her pursuit of MA, she undertook numerous research in west China (Sichuan, Shaanxi, Gansu) where she looked at collective relocation of households following earthquakes and landslides. After joining SEES, she included 2015 Gorkha earthquake (Nepal) and 2010-11 Canterbury earthquakes (New Zealand) into her PhD project. The project is focused on the recovery experience and outcomes of households displaced by these three earthquakes, in which Nepal represents lower-income country setting, China as developing, and New Zealand as a developed setting. This project aims to characterise and define sustainable recovery from natural disasters on the reflection of the reconstruction strategies and practices in these three nations.


United Nations, UNU-WIDER PhD Internship Programme, Helsinki, Mar-Jun, 2018.

Recent works

‘We need land first’: Identifying local needs for recovery after the 2015 Gorkha earthquake, Nepal (IN PROCESS)

Disconnection between housing reconstruction and recovery: A case study on displaced rural households under the 2008 Sichuan earthquake reconstruction program, China (UNDER REVIEW)

Accumulation of vulnerabilities in the aftermath of 2015 Nepal earthquakes: Household displacement, livelihood changes and recovery challenges (IN REVISION)

Conference presentation

1st-anniversary workshop on Gorkha earthquake: Vulnerabilities at household level: A case study on the Barpak victims after the Gorkha earthquake (Oral presentation), Kathmandu, 2016.

AGU 2017 fall conference: What matters in sustainable disaster recovery? Evidence from the 2008 Sichuan earthquake-displaced households, China (Poster presentation), New Orleans, 2017.

Advisory team

Professor Jonathan C. Aitchison (SEES)

Professor Karen Hussey (SOCSCI)

Teaching experience

Ÿ GEOM7005--Geographical Information Systems

Ÿ GEOS2110--Tectonic Geomorphology (New Zealand field course)

Ÿ GEOS1100--Environmental and Society             

Language ability

English, Chinese


Piano, books.