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Australia and the Asia-Pacific is a remarkable region in which to study the impact that people have had on the environment over 100's to 1000's of years. My research is focused on reconstructing past environmental change through the disciplines of palaeoecology, biogeography and archaeological science and aims to gain a better understanding of the state of our current environment as well as the implications for the future. Specifically, I undertake pure and applied research to understand the effects of human action on terrestrial and wetland ecosystems, the role of natural climate variability and how the environment has influenced the prehistoric development of regional subsistence strategies (e.g. hunting and gathering, agriculture).

My research programs, involving national and international collaborators, use an assortment of techniques, including palynology, aerobiology, stable isotopes, geochemistry and ecological survey. I am a Chief Investigator in the ARC Centre of Excellence for Australian Biodiversity and Heritage and Director of the School of Culture, History and Language, College of Asia and the Pacific, Australian National University.


  • –present
    Professor, Australian National University


  • 1994 
    Australian National University, Ph.D