What we do – 

Resilience and Wellbeing Planning

JOC Consulting is passionate about planning and designing a sustainable future for all. We believe resilience is not just about recovering from disaster, but about collectively and across all levels of society coping with the chronic stresses associated with living in an increasingly uncertain world. The need to prepare, to work together, and to look after one another has never been more urgent or important than it is now, in these pandemic times.

Resilience in the context of cities and regions is a quality that is built over time and can only be achieved collaboratively. At JOC we see resilience planning as a vehicle for building networks and collaboration; our resilience plans literally become a way of ‘learning by doing’.

Resilience planning is closely aligned with wellbeing planning. While the starting point may be slightly different – with resilience often being framed more by environmental factors influencing community and wellbeing being focussed on the psycho-social aspects of community – the end goals are virtually the same. Both resilience and wellbeing planning seek to build on existing (tangible or intangible) assets in the community to strengthen local networks and social capital.

Access to the right information, social cohesion and collaboration are at the core of resilience and wellbeing planning. We have learned from experience that engaging the community and stakeholders on this topic requires an approach that is wide in reach and deep in content.

Resilience planning services

Now more than ever, we are seeing the importance of planning for both the expected and unexpected future and for both major shocks and daily stresses. Our multidisciplinary team offers a variety of services that help our clients prepare for and embrace change. These include strategic risk management, strategy and policy review, organisational and operational planning, stakeholder and community engagement.

Our expertise in communication, capacity building and change management allows us to bridge the gap between resilience planning at an organisational level and on the ground. We translate the often nebulous term of resilience into practical and pragmatic strategies.


Resilience planning is the process by which communities and organisations build their capacity to prepare, respond and recover from major shocks and stresses. In this process, the first step is to identify and assess vulnerabilities to then develop avenues for mitigation and risk management.

It’s hard to plan for what we cannot see. Information and communication are key to uncover and discover the threats that we face to be able to plan for them. However, planning for the unexpected is equally important. This can be done by building and ingraining collaboration and flexibility in communities, systems and organisations.

Our team offers strategy and policy review and writing, community and stakeholder engagement and reporting. Our expertise is bringing clarity to complexity and effectively communicating holistic and complicated concepts and creating a pragmatic frame of reference for collective action – internally or externally.

Resilience planning has to date tended to focus on planning for natural disasters (the ‘’survive, adapt, thrive’’ conceptualisation of the term reflective of this). The pandemic of 2020 has revealed the importance of planning for chronic stresses as well; increasingly we are seeing the uncertainty of the world in COVID-19 is manifesting itself as a chronic stress that impacts personal as well as community wellbeing. Recent research suggests that while singular disastrous events (e.g. bushfires) tend to bring people together, long term disastrous stresses such as pandemics can put additional strain on community networks. This reinforces the role of building local neighbourhoods and community networks as key to effective resilience planning. Developing a plan for pandemics has at its core, strengthening relationships, improving communication and trust between public and private realms.

Select experience

Your resilience planning consultants

JOC Consulting was engaged by Resilient Sydney in 2017 to facilitate a series of stakeholder engagement sessions with the aim of identifying and presenting key challenges for Sydney, developing actions and strategies in response to these and identifying opportunities for collaboration. Our team approached engagement with a creative and dynamic lens and successfully delivered a series of engagement workshops with businesses, academia, government and community organisations.

In 2019, City of Ryde Council became the first Local Government in Sydney to develop a resilience plan. Our team led the community and stakeholder engagement for the project with a focus on reaching vulnerable communities. We delivered a series of workshops with diverse community groups with a focus on raising awareness and building capacity in the process.

"In setting out to develop one of the first-ever local resilience plans in Australia, we needed the very best of consultants to help us design and deliver a robust community engagement program. That team, led by director John O'Callaghan, had the 'right stuff' with exemplary professionalism, agility and collaborative values to achieve the outcomes we needed from across our diverse, multicultural community of Ryde."
Pablo Bateson
Resource and Resilience Officer, City of Ryde

Get in touch


We’re always up for a chat – reach out, let’s grab a coffee.