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Kevin Tolhurst AM

Honorary Associate Professor, Fire Ecology and Management, The University of Melbourne

Dr Kevin Tolhurst AM is Hon. Assoc. Prof. in Fire Ecology and Management in the Department of Ecosystem and Forest Sciences, University of Melbourne based in Creswick.

Kevin provides expert advice on fire behaviour and fire suppression strategies at major bushfires. Some examples include the Black Saturday fires in Victoria in 2009, and the Great Divide Fires in 2007. Kevin has been involved in several inquiries and court cases involving fires including: Linton Coronial Inquiry, Canberra Coronial Inquiry, House of Representative 2003 Inquiry, 2005 Wangary Coronial Inquiry S.A., the 2008 Parliamentary Inquiry into the 2007 fires in Victoria, and the 2009 Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission.

Kevin’s research activities were centred around developing a bushfire risk management decision support system to be used nationally. He is also active in running specialist training nationally for Fire Behaviour Analysts.

His research and consulting interests include:
• Wildfire behaviour prediction
• Development of prescribed burning techniques and guidelines
• Landscape scale fire ecology management
• Fire risk management
• Ecological impacts of repeated fires


  • 1997–present
    Senior Lecturer, Fire Ecology and Management, University of Melbourne


  • 1996 
    University of Melbourne, PhD

Research Areas

  • Forestry Fire Management (070503)


Member of the Order or Australia, International Association of Wildland Fire Ember Award