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Stephen van Leeuwen

Indigenous Chair of Biodiversity & Environmental Science, Curtin University

Professor Stephen van Leeuwen is a botanical ecologist and the BHP Chair of Biodiversity and Environmental Science at Curtin University. He is also a proud member of the Busselton Noongars, and a respected South West Boojarah Wardandi leader.

Stephen is an astute and knowledgeable executive science manager empowered with the interpersonal and organisation skills to combine a broad scientific competency with a commitment to leadership in research to protect biodiversity, promote sustainable communities and manage Country. His applied research pedigree buttresses a solid appreciation of the threats impacting biodiversity and the emerging challenges and opportunities presented through evidence-based natural resources management.

Stephen is passionate about Closing the Gap on Aboriginal disadvantage and achieving self-determination for all Indigenous Australians. Stephen believes that for Indigenous Australians to achieve this outcome it is critical that decisions about their livelihoods, wellbeing, businesses and most importantly culture, heritage and stewardship of land and sea Country need to be made with or by them – Always was, Always will be.


  • –present
    BHP / Curtin Indigenous Chair of Biodiversity & Environmental Science, Curtin University


  • 1997 
    Curtin University, PhD