Understanding and managing water for the environment, people and industry

Protecing our inland waterways and ensuring the most efficient use of our water resources is vital in Australia the driest inhabited continent on Earth. 

To help government, industry and communities to understand our water needs and processes, Biotext has worked with government departments and agencies to develop clear content and communication tools.

Our role:

  • Client partnerships to ensure business, stakeholder and user needs are met
  • Content analysis to fully understand complex content
  • Research to inform content development
  • Information architecture to support user understanding
  • Content layering to tailor content for different audiences
  • Content development to provide clear messaging
  • Editing and proofreading for quality assurance
  • Information design for user engagement
  • Infographics to support understanding of key concepts
  • Data visualisation to ensure accurate data presentation
  • Accessibility for WCAG requirements

    Murray–Darling Basin Authority (MDBA)

    The MDBA works with industry, irrigators, local communities, First Nations and governments to sustainably  manage water resources in the Murray Darling–Basin.  It’s important that audiences understand key processes in the MDBA’s water management strategies. The MDBA wanted an infographic to explain how river flows and connectivity affect ecosystems and river functions, to be used in a key strategy document and in public presentations. We worked with the MDBA team to translate complex information and data into an accurate and engaging infographic.

    Thanks again for translating the complex Venn diagram into this much more appealing figure! We think it will be used again and again for a multitude of purposes.

    MDBA client

    In 2023, the MDBA developed the first Australian native fish status assessment. This detailed report was the first comprehensive assessment of all native fish, freshwater spiny crayfish and mussel species across the whole of the Basin. The MDBA wanted to distil the 300-page report into several products to better meet the needs of different audiences. Biotext wrote a media release; 2 summaries and infographics for policy, stakeholder and general audiences; and 2 internal documents that presented the context and recommendations to internal teams. We also copyedited the report for clarity, consistency and accuracy.

    The Biotext team were very thorough in their services. The level of detail which the team applied to the services required was excellent. Communication was also excellent [and] Biotext were able to be flexible in receiving draft comments and delivering against milestones.

    MDBA client

    A key responsibility of the MDBA is to manage water resources for the health of the environment. We worked with the MDBA to develop a plain English guide to help stakeholders understand the legislation. This included analysing the legislation and existing information, understanding the roles and information needs of key stakeholders, and translating the legislation into language suitable for a range of audiences including state governments and First Nations and community groups involved in providing water for the environment. We also developed a suite of diagrams and infographics to clearly portray the roles and relationships of the MDBA and state governments, and help explain the processes outlined in the legislation. The Guide to the Environmental Watering Plan was published on the MDBA’s website and printed for consultation with stakeholders.

    Biotext had an exceptional eye for detail and follow through for the entire project. and adapted well to our internal communications team needs and style conventions

    MDBA client

    We also worked on 4 reports on water values in the Murray–Darling Basin to provide clear guidance for government decision makers. The reports were part of a package published by the Australian Water Partnership in partnership with the World Bank under the umbrella of the Valuing Water: The Australian Perspective project. They examined water values in the Murray–Darling Basin through the lenses of the economy, the environment and Australia’s First Nations cultures to elicit insights and generalisable lessons that will help policy makers and other strategic-level interests to improve water-related outcomes in other country contexts.

    This work builds on numerous other water projects we have completed for the MDBA, including writing, editing and developing infographics for MDBA reach reports, and writing and editing a report on the development and evaluation of the ecological elements method for adjusting the MDBA sustainable diversion limit.

    Water modelling reports, NSW Department of Planning and Environment

    As part of its commitment to transparency in its processes, the NSW Department of Planning and Environment are developing a series of reports on their water modelling work. Developing climate data sets for use in climate risk assessment for regional water strategies was designed to detail the climate data processes used in the NSW water modelling framework. Biotext worked with the department over a series of edits to improve the flow of the document and edit for consistency and scientific standards. We analysed existing graphs and developed more effective ways to present complex datasets and information, and developed engaging infographics to explain complex processes. Similarly, we developed a clearer structure for the Source model of the Peel River Valley regulated river system: summary and technical reports to meet the needs of both policy and technical audiences, wrote the summary report, and edited and proofread the report for clarity and consistency.

    In 2024, we edited a series of 6 technical papers about water models and modelling in the Northern and Southern Basins of the Murray-Darling Basin. The highly technical documents were copyedited for clarity and consistency, including ensuring equations were presented correctly. We also provided detailed accessibility services to ensure these documents, including complex figures and tables, met all the WCAG requirements.