Professor Ivan Kennedy
I’m interested in understanding and enhancing biological nitrogen fixation using sunlight as an energy source for more efficient crop nutrition and finding ways to monitor and manage the environmental fate of pesticides to minimise their impact on agroecosystems.
My main area of research and teaching is rural environmental chemistry with a strong microbiological emphasis, aiming to enhance sustainable crop production in agroecosystems. This interest is well illustrated in the activities of the University’s successful SUNFix Centre for Nitrogen Fixation. A special fundamental interest is the study of action in ecosystems, a thermodynamic theory that transcends disciplines with strong implications for sustaining the earth's biosphere. I have many collaborators in the Asian region, in China, Vietnam and Indonesia, working on IDP, ACIAR, FAO, AusAID and World Bank-funded projects. I aim to continue productive collaboration with this region, with a view to encouraging all kinds of environmental action in the planetary interest as commercial activities. In ARC funded projects, strong links with agricultural industries have been fostered such as with the inoculant industry (Bio-Care Technology), with the grains industry (GRDC) and with the cotton industry (CRDC and all Cotton CRCs). An independent cost-benefit analysis by Hassall and Associates indicated that one project conducted with Dr Angus Crossan funded by the CRDC ($120,000) on risk analysis of cotton gin trash (2004) could have saved the cotton industry $1.232billion (net present value) in future environmental compliance costs.
My research interests have been achieved in a range of collaborative enterprises, yielding almost 200 refereed research papers in diverse fields but still achieving an ISI h-index of 25, funded by more than $7.5million of competitive funding since 1990. I’ve published four sole author books and edited five others with an international profile, covering topics such as biological nitrogen fixation, acidification of ecosystems, freeing agricultural produce and the environment of pesticide residues, inoculant biofertilisers and action in ecosystems.
Ivan Kennedy graduated with a BSc(Agric.Hons.1) in 1962, a PhD in 1965 and a DSc(Agric) in 1992 from the University of Western Australia and has been employed by the University of Sydney since 1968, following CSIRO and Fulbright Fellowships in the UK (Leicester) and the USA (Purdue). He has also worked at the Universities of Nice, Leiden, Oxford (Pembroke College), Paris (Institut Pasteur), Shandong (China), Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Tianjin on fellowships, sabbatical leave or collaborative research projects. He has held a Personal Chair in Agricultural & Environmental Chemistry at the University of Sydney since 1995, where he has supervised 42 PhD and MSc postgraduate students. He is a Fellow of the Royal Australian Chemical Institute and was appointed as Visiting Professor in the University of Paris (Institut Pasteur) in 1993 and at Tianjin University of Science & Technology in 2009.
- Cong, P.T., Dung, T.D., Hien, T.M., Hien, N.T., Choudhury, A.T.M.A., Kecskés, M.L., Kennedy, I.R. Inoculant plant growth-promoting microorganisms enhance utilisation of urea-N and grain yield of paddy rice in southern Vietnam (2009) European Journal of Soil Biology 45, 52-61.
- Tranh-Dinh, N., Kennedy, I., Bui, T. and Carter, D. (2009) Survey of Vietnamese peanuts, corn and soil for the presence of Aspergillus flavus and Aspergillus parasiticus. Mycopathologia 168, 257-268.
- Kecskés, M. L., Rose, M. T., Michel, E., Lauby, B. Rakotondrainibe, M., Casteriano, A., Palágyi, A., Moutouvirin, A., Elter, S., Guillas, R., Krishnen G., and Kennedy, I. R. (2009) Rapid immuno-monitoring of inoculant plant growth-promoting microorganisms. Engineering in Life Sciences 9, 431-436.
- Crossan, A.N., Kennedy, I.R. Calculation of pesticide degradation in decaying cotton gin trash (2008) Bulletin of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology 81, 355-359.
- Burns, M., Crossan, A.N., Kennedy, I.R., Rose, M.T. Sorption and desorption of endosulfan sulfate and diuron to composted cotton gin trash (2008) Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry 56, 5260-5265.
- Rose, M.T., Crossan, A.N., Kennedy, I.R. The effect of vegetation on pesticide dissipation from ponded treatment wetlands: Quantification using a simple model (2008) Chemosphere 72, 999-1005.
- Ahmed, M.F., Kennedy, I.R., Choudhury, A.T.M.A., Kecskés, M.L., Deaker, R. Phosphorus adsorption in some australian soils and influence of bacteria on the desorption of phosphorus (2008) Communications in Soil Science and Plant Analysis 39, 1269-1294.
- Li, C., Tyler, T., Van Zwieten, L., Lee, N.A., Kennedy, I.R. Optimisation of analytical method for estrogen in surface water and primary risk assessment in South Creek (2007) International Journal of Water 3, 334-346.
- Efficient nutrient use in rice production in Vietnam achieved using inoculant biofertilisers. Kennedy, I.R., Choudhury, A.T.M.A., Kecskes, M.L. and Rose, M.T. (eds.) (2008). Proceedings of a project (SMCN/2002/073) workshop held in Hanoi Vietnam, 12-13 October 2007, ACIAR Proceedings No. 130 137 pp., Canberra ACT.
- Rational Environmental Management of Agrochemicals: Risk Assessment, Monitoring, & Remedial Action, Ivan R. Kennedy, Keith R. Solomon, Shirley J. Gee, Angus Crossan, Shuo Wang, and Francisco Sánchez-Bayo, eds. ACS 966, 370 pp. Oxford University Press, Washington DC 2007.
Website: Sunfix Centre for nitrogen fixation