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Research papers, University of Canterbury Library

The 2010–2011 Canterbury earthquakes and their aftermath have been described by the Human Rights Commission as one of New Zealand's greatest contemporary human rights challenges. This article documents the shortcomings in the realisation of the right to housing in post-quake Canterbury for homeowners, tenants and the homeless. The article then considers what these shortcomings tell us about New Zealand's overall human rights framework, suggesting that the ongoing and seemingly intractable nature of these issues and the apparent inability to resolve them indicate an underlying fragility implicit in New Zealand's framework for dealing with the consequences of a large-scale natural disaster. The article concludes that there is a need for a comprehensive human rights-based approach to disaster preparedness, response and recovery in New Zealand.

Research papers, University of Canterbury Library

Media law developments have continued across many areas in the period to mid-2013. In defamation, the New Zealand courts have begun to consider the issue of third party liability for publication on the internet, with cases involving Google searches and comments on a Facebook page. A parliamentary inquiry into a case that restricted parliamentary privilege has recommended a Parliamentary Privilege Act containing a definition of ‘proceedings in Parliament’. A satirical website increased its popularity when it fought off threatened defamation proceedings. In breach of confidence, a government body, the Earthquake Commission, obtained an interim injunction prohibiting publication of information accidentally released that dealt with the repair of earthquake-damaged properties in Christchurch, and a blogger made the information available online in breach of the order.

Research papers, University of Canterbury Library

This study explored the experiences of 10 leaders in their intentional six-month implementation, during the 2010-2011Christchurch earthquakes, of an adapted positive leadership model. The study concluded that the combination of strategies in the model provided psychological and participative safety for leaders to learn and to apply new ways of working. Contrary to other studies on natural disaster, workplace performance increased and absenteeism decreased. The research contributes new knowledge to the positive leadership literature and new understanding, from the perspective of leaders, of the challenges of leading in a workplace environment of ongoing natural disaster events.

Research papers, University of Canterbury Library

This paper presents the preliminary conclusions of the first stage of Wellington Case Study project (Regulating For Resilience in an Earthquake Vulnerable City) being undertaken by the Disaster Law Research Group at the University of Canterbury Law School. This research aims to map the current regulatory environment around improving the seismic resilience of the urban built environment. This work provides the basis for the second stage of the project which will map the regulatory tools onto the reality of the current building stock in Wellington. Using a socio-legal methodology, the current research examines the regulatory framework around seismic resilience for existing buildings in New Zealand, with a particularly focus on multi-storey in the Wellington CBD. The work focusses both on the operation and impact of the formal seismic regulatory tools open to public regulators (under the amended Building Act) as other non-seismic regulatory tools. As well as examining the formal regulatory frame, the work also provides an assessment of the interactions between other non-building acts (such as Health and Safety at Work Act 2015) on the requirements of seismic resilience. Other soft-law developments (particularly around informal building standards) are also examined. The final output of this work will presents this regulatory map in a clear and easily accessible manner and provide an assessment of the suitability of this at times confusing and patchy legal environment as Wellington moves towards becoming a resilient city. The final conclusion of this work will be used to specifically examine the ability of Wellington to make this transition under the current regulatory environment as phase two of the Wellington Case Study project.

Research papers, University of Canterbury Library

These research papers explore the concept of vulnerability in international human rights law. In the wake of the Christchurch earthquakes of 2010-2011, this research focuses on how "vulnerability" has been used and developed within the wider human rights discourse. They also examine jurisprudence of international human rights bodies, and how the concept of "vulnerability" has been applied. The research also includes a brief investigation into the experiences of vulnerable populations in disaster contexts, focusing primarily on the experiences of "vulnerable persons" in the Christchurch earthquakes and their aftermath.

Research papers, University of Canterbury Library

These research papers explore the concept of vulnerability in international human rights law. In the wake of the Christchurch earthquakes of 2010-2011, this research focuses on how "vulnerability" has been used and developed within the wider human rights discourse. They also examine jurisprudence of international human rights bodies, and how the concept of "vulnerability" has been applied. The research also includes a brief investigation into the experiences of vulnerable populations in disaster contexts, focusing primarily on the experiences of "vulnerable persons" in the Christchurch earthquakes and their aftermath.

Research papers, University of Canterbury Library

These research papers explore the concept of vulnerability in international human rights law. In the wake of the Christchurch earthquakes of 2010-2011, this research focuses on how "vulnerability" has been used and developed within the wider human rights discourse. They also examine jurisprudence of international human rights bodies, and how the concept of "vulnerability" has been applied. The research also includes a brief investigation into the experiences of vulnerable populations in disaster contexts, focusing primarily on the experiences of "vulnerable persons" in the Christchurch earthquakes and their aftermath.

Research papers, The University of Auckland Library

In September 2010 and February 2011 the Canterbury region of New Zealand was struck by two powerful earthquakes, registering magnitude 7.1 and 6.3 respectively on the Richter scale. The second earthquake was centred 10 kilometres south-east of the centre of Christchurch (the region’s capital and New Zealand’s third most populous urban area, with approximately 360,000 residents) at a depth of five kilometres. 185 people were killed, making it the second deadliest natural disaster in New Zealand’s history. (66 people were killed in the collapse of one building alone, the six-storey Canterbury Television building.) The earthquake occurred during the lunch hour, increasing the number of people killed on footpaths and in buses and cars by falling debris. In addition to the loss of life, the earthquake caused catastrophic damage to both land and buildings in Christchurch, particularly in the central business district. Many commercial and residential buildings collapsed in the tremors; others were damaged through soil liquefaction and surface flooding. Over 1,000 buildings in the central business district were eventually demolished because of safety concerns, and an estimated 70,000 people had to leave the city after the earthquakes because their homes were uninhabitable. The New Zealand Government declared a state of national emergency, which stayed in force for ten weeks. In 2014 the Government estimated that the rebuild process would cost NZ$40 billion (approximately US$27.3 billion, a cost equivalent to 17% of New Zealand’s annual GDP). Economists now estimate it could take the New Zealand economy between 50 and 100 years to recover. The earthquakes generated tens of thousands of insurance claims, both against private home insurance companies and against the New Zealand Earthquake Commission, a government-owned statutory body which provides primary natural disaster insurance to residential property owners in New Zealand. These ranged from claims for hundreds of millions of dollars concerning the local port and university to much smaller claims in respect of the thousands of residential homes damaged. Many of these insurance claims resulted in civil proceedings, caused by disputes about policy cover, the extent of the damage and the cost and/or methodology of repairs, as well as failures in communication and delays caused by the overwhelming number of claims. Disputes were complicated by the fact that the Earthquake Commission provides primary insurance cover up to a monetary cap, with any additional costs to be met by the property owner’s private insurer. Litigation funders and non-lawyer claims advocates who took a percentage of any insurance proceeds also soon became involved. These two factors increased the number of parties involved in any given claim and introduced further obstacles to resolution. Resolving these disputes both efficiently and fairly was (and remains) central to the rebuild process. This created an unprecedented challenge for the justice system in Christchurch (and New Zealand), exacerbated by the fact that the Christchurch High Court building was itself damaged in the earthquakes, with the Court having to relocate to temporary premises. (The High Court hears civil claims exceeding NZ$200,000 in value (approximately US$140,000) or those involving particularly complex issues. Most of the claims fell into this category.) This paper will examine the response of the Christchurch High Court to this extraordinary situation as a case study in innovative judging practices and from a jurisprudential perspective. In 2011, following the earthquakes, the High Court made a commitment that earthquake-related civil claims would be dealt with as swiftly as the Court's resources permitted. In May 2012, it commenced a special “Earthquake List” to manage these cases. The list (which is ongoing) seeks to streamline the trial process, resolve quickly claims with precedent value or involving acute personal hardship or large numbers of people, facilitate settlement and generally work proactively and innovatively with local lawyers, technical experts and other stakeholders. For example, the Court maintains a public list (in spreadsheet format, available online) with details of all active cases before the Court, listing the parties and their lawyers, summarising the facts and identifying the legal issues raised. It identifies cases in which issues of general importance have been or will be decided, with the expressed purpose being to assist earthquake litigants and those contemplating litigation and to facilitate communication among parties and lawyers. This paper will posit the Earthquake List as an attempt to implement innovative judging techniques to provide efficient yet just legal processes, and which can be examined from a variety of jurisprudential perspectives. One of these is as a case study in the well-established debate about the dialogic relationship between public decisions and private settlement in the rule of law. Drawing on the work of scholars such as Hazel Genn, Owen Fiss, David Luban, Carrie Menkel-Meadow and Judith Resnik, it will explore the tension between the need to develop the law through the doctrine of precedent and the need to resolve civil disputes fairly, affordably and expeditiously. It will also be informed by the presenter’s personal experience of the interplay between reported decisions and private settlement in post-earthquake Christchurch through her work mediating insurance disputes. From a methodological perspective, this research project itself gives rise to issues suitable for discussion at the Law and Society Annual Meeting. These include the challenges in empirical study of judges, working with data collected by the courts and statistical analysis of the legal process in reference to settlement. September 2015 marked the five-year anniversary of the first Christchurch earthquake. There remains widespread dissatisfaction amongst Christchurch residents with the ongoing delays in resolving claims, particularly insurers, and the rebuild process. There will continue to be challenges in Christchurch for years to come, both from as-yet unresolved claims but also because of the possibility of a new wave of claims arising from poor quality repairs. Thus, a final purpose of presenting this paper at the 2016 Meeting is to gain the benefit of other scholarly perspectives and experiences of innovative judging best practice, with a view to strengthening and improving the judicial processes in Christchurch. This Annual Meeting of the Law and Society Association in New Orleans is a particularly appropriate forum for this paper, given the recent ten year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina and the plenary session theme of “Natural and Unnatural Disasters – human crises and law’s response.” The presenter has a personal connection with this theme, as she was a Fulbright scholar from New Zealand at New York University in 2005/2006 and participated in the student volunteer cleanup effort in New Orleans following Katrina. http://www.lawandsociety.org/NewOrleans2016/docs/2016_Program.pdf

Research papers, University of Canterbury Library

In this dissertation it is argued that the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Act 2011 and the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Authority were both necessary and inevitable given the trends and traditions of civil defence emergency management (CDEM) in New Zealand. The trends and traditions of civil defence are such that principles come before practice, form before function, and change is primarily brought about through crisis and criticism. The guiding question of the research was why were a new governance system and law made after the Canterbury earthquakes in 2010 and 2011? Why did this outcome occur despite the establishment of a modern emergency management system in 2002 which included a recovery framework that had been praised by international scholars as leading edge and a model for other countries? The official reason was the unprecedented scale and demands of the recovery – but a disaster of such scale is the principle reason for having a national emergency management system. Another explanation is the lack of cooperation among local authorities – but that raises the question of whether the CDEM recovery framework would have been successful in another locality. Consequentially, the focus of this dissertation is on the CDEM recovery framework and how New Zealand came to find itself making disaster law during a disaster. Recommendations include a review of emergency powers for recovery, a review of the capabilities needed to fulfil the mandate of Recovery Managers, and the establishment of a National Recovery Office with a cadre of Recovery Managers that attend every recovery to observe, advise, or assume control as needed. CDEM Group Recovery Managers would be seconded to the National Recovery Office which would allow for experience in recovery management to be developed and institutionalised through regular practice.

Research papers, Lincoln University

Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to identify through the application of Actor Network Theory (ANT) the issues and impediments to the implementation of mandatory seismic retrofitting policies proposed by the New Zealand Government. In particular the tension between the heritage protection objectives contained in the Resource Management Act 1991 and the earthquake mitigation measures contained in the Building Act 2004 are examined. Design/methodology/approach - The paper uses a case study approach based on the Harcourts Building in Wellington New Zealand and the case law relating to attempts to demolish this particular building. Use is made of ANT as a 'lens' to identify and study the controversies around mandatory seismic retrofitting of heritage buildings. The concept of translation is used to draw network diagrams.

Research papers, University of Canterbury Library

This paper discusses the seismic performance of the standard RC office building in Christchurch that is given as a structural design example in NZS3101, the concrete structures seismic standard in New Zealand. Firstly the push-over analysis was carried out to evaluate the lateral load carrying capacity of the RC building and then to compare that carrying capacity with the Japanese standard law. The estimated figures showed that the carrying capacity of the New Zealand standard RC office building of NZS3101:2006 was about one third of Japanese demanded carrying capacity. Secondly, time history analysis of the multi-mass system was performed to estimate the maximum response story drift angle using recorded ground motions. Finally, a three-dimensional analysis was carried out to estimate the response of the building to the 22nd February, 2011 Canterbury earthquake. The following outcomes were obtained. 1) The fundamental period of the example RC building is more than twice that of Japanese simplified calculation, 2) The example building’s maximum storey drift angle reached 2.5% under the recorded ground motions. The main purpose of this work is to provide background information of seismic design practice for the reconstruction of Christchurch.

Research papers, University of Canterbury Library

Active faults capable of generating highly damaging earthquakes may not cause surface rupture (i.e., blind faults) or cause surface ruptures that evade detection due to subsequent burial or erosion by surface processes. Fault populations and earthquake frequency-­‐magnitude distributions adhere to power laws, implying that faults too small to cause surface rupture but large enough to cause localized strong ground shaking densely populate continental crust. The rupture of blind, previously undetected faults beneath Christchurch, New Zealand in a suite of earthquakes in 2010 and 2011, including the fatal 22 February 2011 moment magnitude (Mw) 6.2 Christchurch earthquake and other large aftershocks, caused a variety of environmental impacts, including major rockfall, severe liquefaction, and differential surface uplift and subsidence. All of these effects occurred where geologic evidence for penultimate effects of the same nature existed. To what extent could the geologic record have been used to infer the presence of proximal, blind and / or unidentified faults near Christchurch? In this instance, we argue that phenomena induced by high intensity shaking, such as rock fragmentation and rockfall, revealed the presence of proximal active faults in the Christchurch area prior to the recent earthquake sequence. Development of robust earthquake shaking proxy datasets should become a higher scientific priority, particularly in populated regions.

Research papers, Lincoln University

The world experiences a number of disasters each year. Following a disaster, the affected area moves to a phase of recovery which involves multiple stakeholders. An important element of recovery is planning the rebuild of the affected environment guided by the legislative framework to which planning is bound to (March & Kornakova, 2017). Yet, there appears to be little research that has investigated the role of planners in a recovery setting and the implications of recovery legislative planning frameworks. This study was conducted to explore the role of the planner in the Canterbury earthquake recovery process in New Zealand and the impact of the Canterbury Earthquake Recovery Act 2011 (CER Act) on planners’ roles and how they operated. The methodology comprised a combination of document analysis of legislation and related recovery material and 21 semi-structured interviews with key planners, politicians and professionals involved in the recovery. The results suggest that the majority of planners interviewed were affected by the CER Act in their role and how they operated, although institutional context, especially political constraints, was a key factor in determining the degree of impact. It is argued that planners played a key role in recovery and were generally equipped in terms of skills needed in a recovery setting. In order to better utilise planners in post-disaster recovery or disaster risk management, two suggestions are proposed. Firstly, better promote planners and their capabilities to improve awareness of what planners can do. Secondly, educate and build an understanding between central government politicians and planners over each others role to produce better planning outcomes.

Research papers, University of Canterbury Library

The use of post-earthquake cordons as a tool to support emergency managers after an event has been documented around the world. However, there is limited research that attempts to understand the use, effectiveness, inherent complexities, impacts and subsequent consequences of cordoning once applied. This research aims to fill that gap by providing a detailed understanding of first, the cordons and associated processes, and their implications in a post-earthquake scenario. We use a qualitative method to understand cordons through case studies of two cities where it was used in different temporal and spatial scales: Christchurch (2011) and Wellington (Kaikōura earthquake 2016), New Zealand. Data was collected through 21 expert interviews obtained through purposive and snowball sampling of key informants who were directly or indirectly involved in a decision-making role and/or had influence in relation to the cordoning process. The participants were from varying backgrounds and roles i.e. emergency managers, council members, business representatives, insurance representatives, police and communication managers. The data was transcribed, coded in Nvivo and then grouped based on underlying themes and concepts and then analyzed inductively. It is found that cordons are used primarily as a tool to control access for the purpose of life safety and security. But cordons can also be adapted to support recovery. Broadly, it can be synthesized and viewed based on two key aspects, ‘decision-making’ and ‘operations and management’, which overlap and interact as part of a complex system. The underlying complexity arises in large part due to the multitude of sectors it transcends such as housing, socio-cultural requirements, economics, law, governance, insurance, evacuation, available resources etc. The complexity further increases as the duration of cordon is extended.

Research papers, University of Canterbury Library

Beam-column joints are addressed in the context of current design procedures and performance criteria for reinforced concrete ductile frames subjected to large earthquake motions. Attention is drawn to the significant differences between the pertinent requirements of concrete design codes of New Zealand and the United States for such joints. The difference between codes stimulated researchers and structural engineers of the United States, New Zealand, Japan and China to undertake an international collaborative research project. The major investigators of the project selected issues and set guidelines for co-ordinated testing of joint specimens designed according to the codes of the countries. The tests conducted at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand, are reported. Three full-scale beam-column-slab joint assemblies were designed according to existing code requirements of NZS 3101:1982, representing an interior joint of a one-way frame, an interior joint of a two-way frame, and an exterior joint of a two-way frame. Quasistatic cyclic loading simulating severe earthquake actions was applied. The overall performance of each test assembly was found to be satisfactory in terms of stiffness, strength and ductility. The joint and column remained essentially undamaged while plastic hinges formed in the beams. The weak beam-strong column behaviour sought in the design, desirable in tall ductile frames designed for earthquake resistance, was therefore achieved. Using the laws of statics and test observations, the action and flow of forces from the slabs, beams and column to the joint cores are explored. The effects of bond performance and the seismic shear resistance of the joints, based on some postulated mechanisms, are examined. Implications of the test results on code specifications are discussed and design recomendations are made.

Research papers, University of Canterbury Library

This thesis is about many things, not least of all the September 4th 2010 and February 22nd 2011 earthquakes that shook Christchurch, New Zealand. A city was shaken, events which worked to lay open the normally invisible yet vital objects, processes and technologies which are the focus of inquiry: the sewers, pipes, pumps, the digital technologies, the land and politics which constitute the Christchurch wastewater networks. The thesis is an eclectic mix drawing together methods and concepts from Bruno Latour, John Law, Giles Deleuze and Felix Guattari, Nigel Thrift, Donna Haraway and Patrick Joyce. It is an exploration of how the technologies and objects of sanitation perform the city, and how such things which are normally hidden and obscured, are made visible. The question of visibility is also turned toward the research itself: how does one observe, and describe? How are sociological visibilities constructed? Through the research, the encountering of objects in the field, the processes of method, the pedagogy of concepts, and the construction of risk, the thesis comes to be understood as a particular kind of social scientific artefact which assembles four different accounts: the first regards the construction of visibility; the second explores Christchurch city from the control room where the urban sanitary infrastructures are monitored; the third chapter looks at the formatted and embodied practices which emerge with the correlation of the city and sanitation; the fourth looks at the changing politics of a city grappling with severely damaged essential services, land and structures. The final chapter considers how the differences between romantic and baroque sensibilities mean that these four accounts elicit knowing not through smoothness or uniformity, but in partiality and non-coherence. This thesis is about pipes, pump stations, and treatment plants; about the effluent of a city; about the messiness of social science when confronted by the equally messy world of wastewater.

Research papers, Lincoln University

Recovery from disasters is a significant issue faced by all countries in the world at various times. Governments, including central and local governments, are the key actors regarding post-disaster recovery because they have the authority and responsibility to rescue affected people and recover affected areas (Yang, 2010). Planning is a critical step in the recovery process and provides the basis for defining a shared vision for recovery, clear objectives and intended results. Subsequently, the concept of collaborative planning and ‘build back better’ are highly desirable in recovery planning. However, in practice, these concepts are difficult to achieve. A brief description of the recovery planning in Christchurch City following the Canterbury earthquakes 2011 is provided as an example and comparison. This research aims to analyse the planning process to develop a post-disaster recovery plan in Indonesia using Mataram City’s recovery plan following the Lombok Earthquakes 2018 as the case study. It will emphasise on the roles of the central and local governments and whether they collaborate or not, and the implications of decentralisation for recovery planning. The methodology comprised a combination of legislation analysis and semi-structure interviews with the representatives of the central and local governments who were involved in the planning process. The results indicate that there was no collaboration between the central and local governments when developing the recovery plan, with the former tend to dominate and control the planning process. It is because there are regulatory and institutional problems concerning disaster management in Indonesia. In order to improve the implementation of disaster management and develop a better recovery plan, some recommendations are proposed. These include amendments the disaster management law and regulations to provide a clear guideline regarding the roles and responsibilities of both the central and local governments. It is also imperative to improve the capacity and capability of the local governments in managing disaster.

Research papers, University of Canterbury Library

In this paper, we consider how religious leaders and Civil Defence authorities might collaborate to establish a two-way information conduit during the aftermath of a disaster. Using surveys and in-person interviews, clergy in different Christian denominations were asked about their roles in the earthquake, the needs of their congregations and the possibilities and obstacles to deeper collaboration with Civil Defence authorities.

Research papers, University of Canterbury Library

The Canterbury earthquakes of 2010 and 2011 have shone the spotlight on a number of tax issues. These issues, and in particular lessons learned from them, will be relevant for revenue authorities, policymakers and taxpayers alike in the broader context of natural disasters. Issues considered by this paper include the tax treatment of insurance monies. For example, building owners will receive pay-outs for destroyed assets and buildings which have been depreciated. Where the insurance payment is more than the adjusted tax value, there will be a taxable "gain on sale" (or depreciation recovery income). If the building owner uses those insurance proceeds to purchase a replacement asset, legislative amendments specifically enacted following the earthquakes provide that rollover relief of the depreciation recovery income is available. The tax treatment of expenditure to seismically strengthen a building is another significant issue faced by building owners. Case law has determined that this expenditure will usually be capital expenditure. In the past such costs could be capitalised to the building and depreciated accordingly. However, since the 2011-2012 income year owners have been prohibited from claiming depreciation on buildings and therefore currently no deduction is available for such strengthening expenditure (whether immediate or deferred). This has significant potential implications for landlords throughout New Zealand facing significant seismic retrofit costs. Incentives, or some form of financial support, whether delivered through the tax system or some other mechanism may be required. International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) require insurance proceeds, including reimbursement for expenditure of a capital nature, be reported as income while expenditure itself is not recorded as a current period expense. This has the effect of overstating current income and creating a larger variation between reported income for accounting and taxation purposes. Businesses have obligations to maintain certain business records for tax purposes. Reconstructing records destroyed by a natural disaster depends on how the information was originally stored. The earthquakes have demonstrated the benefits of ‘off-site’ (outside Canterbury) storage, in particular electronic storage. This paper considers these issues and the Inland Revenue Department (Inland Revenue) Standard Practice Statement which deals with inter alia retention of business records in electronic format and offshore record storage. Employer provided accommodation is treated as income to the benefitting employee. A recent amendment to the Income Tax Act 2007 retrospectively provides that certain employer provided accommodation is exempt from tax. The time aspect of these rules is extended where the employee is involved in the Canterbury rebuild and comes from outside the region.

Research papers, University of Canterbury Library

The Canterbury earthquakes in 2010 and 2011 had a significant impact on landlords and tenants of commercial buildings in the city of Christchurch. The devastation wrought on the city was so severe that in an unprecedented response to this disaster a cordon was erected around the central business district for nearly two and half years while demolition, repairs and rebuilding took place. Despite the destruction, not all buildings were damaged. Many could have been occupied and used immediately if they had not been within the cordoned area. Others had only minor damage but repairs to them could not be commenced, let alone completed, owing to restrictions on access caused by the cordon. Tenants were faced with a major problem in that they could not access their buildings and it was likely to be a long time before they would be allowed access again. The other problem was uncertainty about the legal position as neither the standard form leases in use, nor any statute, provided for issues arising from an inaccessible building. The parties were therefore uncertain about their legal rights and obligations in this situation. Landlords and tenants were unsure whether tenants were required to pay rent for a building that could not be accessed or whether they could terminate their leases on the basis that the building was inaccessible. This thesis looks at whether the common law doctrine of frustration could apply to leases in these circumstances, where the lease had made no provision. It analyses the history of the doctrine and how it applies to a lease, the standard form leases in use at the time of the earthquakes and the unexpected and extraordinary nature of the earthquakes. It then reports on the findings of the qualitative empirical research undertaken to look at the experiences of landlords and tenants after the earthquakes. It is argued that the circumstances of landlords and tenants met the test for the doctrine of frustration. Therefore, the doctrine could have applied to leases to enable the parties to terminate them. It concludes with a suggestion for reform in the form of a new Act to govern the special relationship between commercial landlords and tenants, similar to legislation already in place covering other types of relationships like those in residential tenancies and employment. Such legislation could provide dispute resolution services to enable landlords and tenants to have access to justice to determine their legal rights at all times, and in particular, in times of crisis.

Research papers, Victoria University of Wellington

“One of the most basic and fundamental questions in urban master planning and building regulations is ‘how to secure common access to sun, light and fresh air?” (Stromann-Andersen & Sattrup, 2011).  Daylighting and natural ventilation can have significant benefits in office buildings. Both of these ‘passive’ strategies have been found to reduce artificial lighting and air-conditioning energy consumption by as much as 80% (Ministry for the Environment, 2008); (Brager, et al., 2007). Access to daylight and fresh air can also be credited with improved occupant comfort and health, which can lead to a reduction of employee absenteeism and an increase of productivity (Sustainability Victoria, 2008).  In the rebuild of Christchurch central city, following the earthquakes of 2010 and 2011, Cantabrians have expressed a desire for a low-rise, sustainable city, with open spaces and high performance buildings (Christchurch City Council, 2011). With over 80% of the central city being demolished, a unique opportunity to readdress urban form and create a city that provides all buildings with access to daylight and fresh air exists.  But a major barrier to wide-spread adoption of passive buildings in New Zealand is their dependence on void space to deliver daylight and fresh air – void space which could otherwise be valuable built floor space. Currently, urban planning regulations in Christchurch prioritize density, allowing and even encouraging low performance compact buildings.  Considering this issue of density, this thesis aimed to determine which urban form and building design changes would have the greatest effect on building performance in Central City Christchurch.  The research proposed and parametrically tested modifications of the current compact urban form model, as well as passive building design elements. Proposed changes were assessed in three areas: energy consumption, indoor comfort and density. Three computer programs were used: EnergyPlus was the primary tool, simulating energy consumption and thermal comfort. Radiance/Daysim was used to provide robust daylighting calculations and analysis. UrbaWind enabled detailed consideration of the urban wind environment for reliable natural ventilation predictions.  Results found that, through a porous urban form and utilization of daylight and fresh air via simple windows, energy consumption could be reduced as much as 50% in buildings. With automatic modulation of windows and lighting, thermal and visual comfort could be maintained naturally for the majority of the occupied year. Separation of buildings by as little as 2m enabled significant energy improvements while having only minimal impact on individual property and city densities.  Findings indicated that with minor alterations to current urban planning laws, all buildings could have common access to daylight and fresh air, enabling them to operate naturally, increasing energy efficiency and resilience.

Research papers, University of Canterbury Library

When disasters and crises, both man-made and natural, occur, resilient higher education institutions adapt in order to continue teaching and research. This may necessitate the closure of the whole institution, a building and/or other essential infrastructure. In disasters of large scale the impact can be felt for many years. There is an increasing recognition of the need for disaster planning to restructure educational institutions so that they become more resilient to challenges including natural disasters (Seville, Hawker, & Lyttle, 2012).The University of Canterbury (UC) was affected by seismic events that resulted in the closure of the University in September 2010 for 10 days and two weeks at the start of the 2011 academic year This case study research describes ways in which e-learning was deployed and developed by the University to continue and even to improve learning and teaching in the aftermath of a series of earthquakes in 2010 and 2011. A qualitative intrinsic embedded/nested single case study design was chosen for the study. The population was the management, support staff and educators at the University of Canterbury. Participants were recruited with purposive sampling using a snowball strategy where the early key participants were encouraged to recommend further participants. Four sources of data were identified: (1) documents such as policy, reports and guidelines; (2) emails from leaders of the colleges and academics; (3) communications from senior management team posted on the university website during and after the seismic activity of 2010 and 2011; and (4) semi-structured interviews of academics, support staff and members of senior management team. A series of inductive descriptive content analyses identified a number of themes in the data. The Technology Acceptance Model 2 (Venkatesh & Davis, 2000) and the Indicator of Resilience Model (Resilient Organisations, 2012) were used for additional analyses of each of the three cases. Within the University case, the cases of two contrasting Colleges were embedded to produce a total of three case studies describing e-learning from 2000 - 2014. One contrast was the extent of e-learning deployment at the colleges: The College of Education was a leader in the field, while the College of Business and Law had relatively little e-learning at the time of the first earthquake in September 2010. The following six themes emerged from the analyses: Communication about crises, IT infrastructure, Availability of e-learning technologies, Support in the use of e-learning technologies, Timing of crises in academic year and Strategic planning for e-learning. One of the findings confirmed earlier research that communication to members of an organisation and the general public about crises and the recovery from crises is important. The use of communication channels, which students were familiar with and already using, aided the dissemination of the information that UC would be using e-learning as one of the options to complete the academic year. It was also found that e-learning tools were invaluable during the crises and facilitated teaching and learning whilst freeing limited campus space for essential activities and that IT infrastructure was essential to e-learning. The range of e-learning tools and their deployment evolved over the years influenced by repeated crises and facilitated by the availability of centrally located support from the e-Learning support team for a limited set of tools, as well as more localised support and collaboration with colleagues. Furthermore, the reasons and/or rate of e-learning adoption in an educational institution during crises varied with the time of the academic year and the needs of the institution at the time. The duration of the crises also affected the adoption of e-learning. Finally, UC’s lack of an explicit e-learning strategy influenced the two colleges to develop college-specific e-learning plans and those College plans complemented the incorporation of e-learning for the first time in the University’s teaching and learning strategy in 2013. Twelve out of the 13 indicators of the Indicators of Resilience Model were found in the data collected for the study and could be explained using the model; it revealed that UC has become more resilient with e-learning in the aftermath of the seismic activities in 2010 and 2011. The interpretation of the results using TAM2 demonstrated that the adoption of technologies during crises aided in overcoming barriers to learning at the time of the crisis. The recommendations from this study are that in times of crises, educational institutions take advantage of Cloud computing to communicate with members of the institution and stakeholders. Also, that the architecture of a university’s IT infrastructure be made more resilient by increasing redundancy, backup and security, centralisation and Cloud computing. In addition, when under stress it is recommended that new tools are only introduced when they are essential.