A Number of research projects have been carried out by Designlab to enable more suitable products to be specified within remote Australian communities. Assistance has been offered on the following projects:


Flick Mixer Product Research for Remote Australian Communities

FHBH survey data indicates that taps are performing poorly witin many remote communities.

From The National Indigenous Housing Guide, 3rd edition, pp 73-76, 217-218

Poorly performing taps can impact the householder's ability to maintain personal hygiene and health. Washing children under 5 years of age is the highest priority, working and reliable taps form the basis of any healthy personal, family and community living environment.

Taking this into consideration, 12 mixers were thoroughly analysed, the following points were addressed:

  • What quality differences are there amongst the models currently on the market?

  • Establish performance criteria for specifying flick mixers

  • Disassemble, identify, analyse and evaluate materials, components, methods of fixing, etc…

  • Highlight potential problematic issues,

  • Evaluate fastening to basins, walls, etc…

  • Document and present current product examples

  • Specify performance criteria for suitable products

  • Recommend most suited product based on above work for further in field testing



Door Hardware Product Research for Remote Australian Communities

FHBH Survey data shows that door knobs, latches, locks and hinges are performing poorly.

From the National Indigenous Housing Guide - NIHG 3rd edition, pp 28, 139, 150, 199, 204, …

Privacy and security are vital factors in maintaining family health and safety, especially in overcrowded low income housing. Dwellings often contain multiple families and bedrooms are required to provide security for individual families and their possessions.

This research project explored door hardware and the effects of overuse, vandalism and poor maintenance. Research was carried out into a system of reliable products which could combat the harsh environments within remote Australian communities.


Stove Product Research for Remote Australian Communities

A STOVE IMPROVEMENT research document produced by Designlab in 2007 indicates that many stoves in remote communities are performing poorly as they are not designed to meet the needs of their intended context. Overcrowding and harsh environments are causing stoves to fail, resulting in serious hygiene and nutrition issues within families.

A market research project was carried out to establish a list of commercial stove manufacturers whom were capable of producing stoves to suit the needs of this context.
A selection of new commercial style stoves are currently being tested within various remote locations.



Food Management In Remote Australian Communities

A year long research project (for UTS dissertation) exploring the systems of sourcing, transporting, purchasing, storing, preparing and consuming food in Remote Indigenous communities.

The resulting project aimed to improve hygiene and nutrition, as well as redesigning the transportation network. Consolidating suppliers and improving efficiency in order to reduce the price and improve the quality of fresh produce.

The system also explored solutions for in community transportation as well as hygienic storage, preparation and serving within the home.



Project material copyright Designlab 2011




















All work and images Copyright Tasman Munro 2019 unless stated otherwise