Sending green roof uptake through the roof

26 March 2018

Building green roofs will soon become easier with the help of new research.

Photo of plants on green roof at Burnley Campus, University of MelbourneGreen roofs are great news for property amenity and value, health and wellbeing, climate change mitigation and adaptation and biodiversity. Considering these huge benefits, how can we increase the number of green roofs across Australia?

We’re excited to be working on a new project, ‘Researching the benefits of demonstration green roofs across Australia’.

The project investigates how demonstration green roofs can help to overcome cultural, community and horticultural barriers to building green roofs in Australia. With a strong industry focus, the project seeks to overcome barriers by increasing capacity in industry and government.

Funded by Hort Innovation, the project is delivered in partnership by The University of Melbourne, The University of NSW, the City of Melbourne and the Victorian Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning.

With expertise in green infrastructure, psychology and business, the interdisciplinary research team includes Nick WilliamsJohn RaynerClaire FarrellKath WilliamsRebecca Miller, and Kate Lee from The University of Melbourne, Leisa Sargent from The University of NSW and PhD, masters and honours students. Project support and industry engagement is provided by Rachael Bathgate.

Together, we’re investigating:

  • the effectiveness of demonstration green roofs in overcoming barriers to uptake
  • proven plant palettes for different green roof build-ups
  • maintenance needs of different green roof build-ups for new implementation guidelines
  • which green roof plants are aesthetically attractive to a wide range of people
  • vegetation characteristics that increase emotional wellbeing.

The project draws on the Green Infrastructure Research Group’s extensive green roof research outputs from the last 10 years, as well as developing innovative research directions in green roof design, horticulture, plant physiology and social research.

For more information please contact Nick Williams at

Find out more about the project | Find out more about our research