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The Victorian Building Authority (VBA) has a statutory function to conduct or promote research relevant to the regulation of the building and plumbing industries.

Our research program is a key strategic platform that gives us the evidence to inform our regulatory decisions and influence improvements to the building regulatory system.

We conduct research and partner with reputable and prominent research institutions or consortiums to lead research.

Our research helps us better understand major regulatory harms or problems, the needs of consumers and how regulatory interventions can be shaped to improve public safety and amenity in the industry.

Our research makes a difference. Through our research findings or research partnerships, we:

  • identify gaps and tailor regulatory interventions and program design to fix these gaps
  • collaborate with stakeholders to enhance practitioner competencies and deliver improved outcomes for the community
  • support and drive innovation and improvements in the industry.

View a short video that demonstrates our approach to prioritising research that addresses the most significant harms in the built environment, and collaboration with reputable research institutions to deliver research that provides evidence to improve the building regulatory system and the quality of the built environment in Victoria.

Strategic focus

Our research focus is on achieving one or more of these strategic outcomes:

  • Safe (or safer) building and plumbing work with fewer major defects
  • Skilled and competent practitioners
  • A technologically advanced and innovative industry.

While some outcomes of our research are tangible or visible in the short term, much of its impact can only be measured over time as we engage with key stakeholders and the community to influence changes and drive improved consumer outcomes.

Research approach

The VBA’s research program comprises:

  • VBA managed research – where we commission or undertake the research
  • Sponsorships, partnerships and research grants – where we collaborate with industry, academia and government on research.

The research we undertake is primarily applied research, with research projects or collaborations seeking to find solutions to specific problems or to advance our understanding of systemic issues and options for resolution.

Legislative basis

The functions of the VBA under the Building Act 1993 include conducting or promoting research relating to the regulation of the building and plumbing industries in Victoria, and to report on the outcomes of this research in its report of operations under the Financial Management Act 1994 (the VBA’s annual report).

The VBA’s research program is overseen by the VBA Board’s Research and Innovation Committee.

Research projects

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