Our Researchers

Network Convenors

Professor Rosemary Lyster

Prof Rosemary Lyster

Network Convenor
Australian Centre for Climate and Environmental Law
Faculty of Law
The University of Sydney

Room 529, Sydney Law School
P +61 2 9351 0292
E

Rosemary Lyster is a Professor in the Faculty of Law and Director of the Australian Centre for Climate and Environmental Law (ACCEL). In the area of Environmental Law, Rosemary specialises in Energy and Climate Law, Water Law and GMOs and Environmental Law. She has published two books with Cambridge University Press in the area of Energy and Climate Law. They are Rosemary Lyster and Adrian Bradbrook Energy Law and the Environment (Cambridge University Press: 2006) and Adrian J. Bradbrook, Rosemary Lyster, Richard L. Ottinger and Wang Xi (eds) The Law of Energy for Sustainable Development (Cambridge University Press: 2005). Rosemary is also the principal author of Rosemary Lyster, Zada Lipman, Nicola Franklin, Graeme Wiffen, Linda Pearson, Environmental and Planning Law in New South Wales (Federation Press: 2007). Rosemary is the Energy and Water Special Editor of the Environmental Planning and Law Journal which is the leading environmental law journal in Australia. Rosemary is a member of the IUCN – The World Conservation Union Commission on Environmental Law, comprising environmental lawyers from around the world. She is a member of the Commission’s Special Working Groups on Water and Wetlands, Energy and Climate Change, and Forests. Rosemary has an extensive list of publications including books, chapters in books and articles in leading international and domestic law journals. She is a regular presenter at international and domestic conferences.
Full research profile and publications

Professor David Schlosberg

Professor David Schlosberg

Network Co-Convenor
Professor of Environmental Politics
Department of Government and International Relations
Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences
The University of Sydney

Room 270
Merewether Building H04
P +61 2 9036 7094
E

David Schlosberg is Professor of Environmental Politics in the Department of Government and International Relations at the University of Sydney, and is known internationally for his work in environmental politics, environmental movements, and political theory - in particular the intersection of the three with his work on environmental justice. Most recently, he has co-authored Climate-Challenged Society (Oxford 2013) with John Dryzek of ANU and Richard Norgaard of UC Berkeley; the same team edited The Oxford Handbook of Climate Change and Society (Oxford 2011). Professor Schlosberg has held visiting appointments at the London School of Economics, Australian National University, and Princeton University. His current research includes work on climate justice - in particular justice in adaptation strategies and policies, and the question of human obligations of justice to the nonhuman realm. He is also examining the sustainable practices of new environmental movement groups – in particular their attention to flows of power and goods in relation to food, energy, housing, transportation, and crafting and making.
Full research profile and publications


Network Members

Dr Fiona Allon

Fiona Allon

Department of Gender & Cultural Studies
School of Philosophical and Historical Inquiry
Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences
The University of Sydney

My research addresses the ways in which households are adapting to major social, cultural, economic and environmental change. It focuses, for example, on how households are responding to governmental objectives to encourage practices of sustainable living, environmental responsibility, and economic self-management. The concept of everyday life is central to the research, highlighting that the social and cultural dimensions of climate change adaptation are as significant as the development of scientific and technical solutions. This materialist/spatial/cultural approach has been a distinctive feature of my research on the environment, and continues to inform my current work on sustainable cities, suburbs, domestic water use and ‘green’ homes. This approach understands the home/household as a porous site of different kinds of flows (water, energy, food, technological, infrastructural, financial etc.) that unsettle divisions between nature/culture, public/private, and the human/non-human.
Full research profile and publications

Prof Alison Bashford

Alison Bashford

Department of History
School of Philosophical and Historical Inquiry
Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences
The University of Sydney

Alison Bashford is an historian of modern science and medicine. Her early books focused on British imperial and Australian histories, over the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, and more recently she has researched connections between medical history, world history, and environmental history. In 2009 and 2010, Professor Bashford was Chair of Australian Studies at Harvard University, where she taught in the History of Science Department. She has held fellowships at Edinburgh University, Warwick University, and University College, London. In 2011 she was awarded an Australian Research Council Future Fellowship to undertake research on “Climate Change and the History of Environmental Determinism.” Alison Bashford elected to the Australian Academy of the Humanities in 2010. In addition to her work within the Department of History at the University of Sydney, Alison Bashford was founding convenor of the Medical Humanities Program, founding Co-Director of the Nation Empire Globe research group, and Dean of Graduate Studies (Acting) in 2008-09. Her current research includes the history of immigration law and the history of eugenics. Her forthcoming book is “Geopolitics and the World Population Problem: life and earth in the global twentieth century”. This book is contracted by Columbia University Press. She is co-editing with Stuart Macintyre a 2 volume Cambridge History of Australia.
Full research profile and publications

Prof Maria Byrne

Prof Maria Byrne

Discipline of Anatomy and Histology
School of Medical Sciences, School of Biological Sciences
Faculty of Science
The University of Sydney

Professor Maria Byrne is Director of the University of Sydney’s One Tree Island Research Station in the Great Barrier Reef. Prof Byrne is an expert in the biology and ecology of marine invertebrates with a current focus on the impacts of climate change. In research funded by the ARC over the last 20 years, Professor Byrne has investigated the role of the evolution of development in generating larval diversity and as a mechanism underlying speciation in the sea. Professor Byrne served as President of Australian Marine Sciences Association and on the boards of the National Oceans Advisory Group and the Federation of Australian Scientific and Technological Societies. She has published over 170 refereed articles and book chapters.
Full research profile and publications

Assoc Prof Danielle Celermajer

Assoc Prof Danielle Celemajer

Human Rights Program
School of Social and Political Sciences
Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences
The University of Sydney

The key research question that motivates all of my specific research endeavours is, “What are the principles and practices required to construct socially just political communities in the context of diversity (religious, racial, economic, ethnic and political) and in the light of historical violations?” To this end, I focus on international human rights law and institutions and their domestic application, the negotiation of difference within global and local contexts, and mechanisms for dealing with violations in the past (truth commissions, apologies, international criminal law). Currently, I am working on the interface between religious and secular discourses in the area of human rights, the hegemony of human rights as a moral language and the implications of such hegemony for human rights practice and theory. I have an ongoing engagement wit the work on Hannah Arendt and am currently continuing my work on how her work can contribute to our thinking about human rights and the religious underpinnings of her thought. Finally, and in connection with my institutional role as Director of Sydney’s human rights programs, I am exploring human rights education, and in this regard, the role of Universities in bridging scholarly and applied understandings of human rights, Specifically, how can universities constructively contribute to the development of more effective strategies for human rights advocacy?
Full research profile and publications

Dr Lynne Chester

Dr Lynne Chester

Department of Political Economy
School of Social and Political Sciences
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
The University of Sydney

Lynne Chester’s research focuses on the application of régulation theory to energy issues and the environment, energy security, electricity generation capacity, energy poverty, markets for electricity and carbon derivatives, markets for goods and services previously provided direct by government, and Australia's institutional architecture. She is currently working with the French CNRS Centre International de Recherche sur L’environment et Le Développement on a project assessing the implications for generation capacity and end-use prices of climate change policies in liberalised electricity markets.
Full research profile and publications

Prof Linda Connor

Prof Linda Connor

Department of Anthropology
School of Social and Political Sciences
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
The University of Sydney

I have worked in several countries and continents as researcher and academic, pursuing interests in development, religion and ritual, shamanism and healing, and environmental change. These interests have converged in recent years in the study of anthropogenic climate change, culture and place, with research undertaken and supervised in Hunter Valley NSW, Indonesia, and Nepal. In Indonesia, I have researched and published on the transformations wrought by nationally promoted tourist development in Bali, and more recently on notions of citizenship, decentralisation and local communities in the post-Suharto era. In North India in the mid-1990s, I was part of an Australian Research Council-funded team that investigated questions of displacement, identity, and the global context of cultural innovation, through a study of healing in diasporic Tibetan communities. Nine of my completed PhD students have also taken up related questions in various Southeast and South Asian fieldwork contexts, and current students are carrying out research that extends these questions in various ways, in Australia and Asia. Through my own research and supervision of PhD students, I have fostered a strong agenda of ethnographic research in the Asia-Pacific region including Australia. This work provides an invaluable comparative perspective for studies of development and change in the Hunter Valley of NSW, and I am currently an investigator on an Australian Research Council-funded project on Climate Change, Place and Community: A Regional Ethnography of the Hunter Valley.
Full research profile and publications

Dr Michael Davis

Dr Michael Davis

Department of History
School of Philosophical and Historical Inquiry
Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences
The University of Sydney

Dr Michael Davis is currently a postdoctoral research fellow in the Department of History at the University of Sydney. He is working on a book that looks at the formation historically of a discourse of ‘Indigenous knowledge’ as it emerged through Indigenous/European encounters and histories in north east Australia. Michael has published widely on Indigenous knowledge and heritage, including a major work in 2007, Writing Heritage: the Depiction of Indigenous Heritage in European-Australian Writings (Australian Scholarly Publishing, Melbourne, and National Museum of Australia Press, Canberra). Before joining Sydney University in late 2011, Michael had worked for many decades as an independent academic historian and policy specialist, and also taught anthropology and Aboriginal studies at various universities. Michael’s wide ranging experience includes with non-government and Aboriginal community organisations, and in the public sector. His research interests include the relationships between Indigenous and other knowledge systems, intangible cultural heritage, Indigenous knowledge, ecology and place, and ethical research and protocols.
Full research profile and publications

Dr Caitlin De Berignay Wall

Dr Caitlin De Berignay Wall

Art & Design
Faculty of Architecture, Design & Planning
The University of Sydney

Dr Caitlin De Berignay Wall (Dr onacloV) is an artist and researcher in the Design Lab, University of Sydney. onacloV’s research is focused on presenting the science of global climate change. She has exhibited widely nationally and internationally (see www.interantarctica.com). Creative methods of communicating environmental science, such as visualizations, are needed to engage and inform the public. Art and science collaborations are essential for climate change education. onaclov’s current research project "Reefs on the Edge", is an experimental hybrid between art and science that fuses marine biology, environmental science and multiple art forms to explore coral reef habitats and ecosystems threatened by the effects of climate change. Such cooperation encourages education, public discourse and critical discussion to promote conservation in changing climates.
Full research profile and publications

Dr William Figueira

Dr William Figueira

School of Biological Sciences
Faculty of Science
The University of Sydney

My general interests lie in the area of fish population ecology and my research has focused on the behavior and demographics of individual fish populations as well as the large scale connectivity between these populations. The small scale studies are typically conducted on SCUBA or snorkel and employ tools such as tagging, mapping and standard underwater census and behavioural observation techniques. These studies have been conducted in a variety of locations including the Florida Keys (USA), Lee Stocking Island (Bahamas), and One Tree Island (Australia). My interest in the larger scale dynamics of reef fish involves understanding the mechanisms and consequences of metapopulation, and specifically source-sink, dynamics in these systems. While the spatial structure of these systems (distinct areas of occupied habitat) and the connectivity within them (larval exchange between areas) lend themselves nicely to descriptions invoking metapopulation theory, our current understanding of system dynamics is quite low. My work on this topic has run the spectrum from the highly theoretical exercise of creating conceptual and analytical models to allow for the application of metapopulation theory to marine systems in general to the much more applied topic of using metapopulation theory for citing marine reserves and creating effective, biologically interacting reserve networks. I use individually-based, stage-structured spatially realistic computer simulation models to study the impact of variations in habitat quality and network connectivity on system dynamics and specifically source-sink structure.
Full research profile and publications

Dr Jodi Frawley

Dr Jodi Frawley

Social and Political Change Group
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
University of Technology, Sydney

Her current research project, in collaboration with Professor Heather Goodall, is called Environments of Fear and Hope: Overabundance, scarcity and the circulation of botanical knowledges through intercolonial networks 1850-1950. In this work, we are tracing the transnational movement of prickly pear Opuntia sp. and saltbush Atriplex sp. (plants, plant material and plant information) between Australia, India, South Africa and America. This comparative study will allow us to identify metaphors of fear and hope in relation to invasive and endangered species with special reference to how such metaphors overlap in human and non-human populations in different places. We are examining the role of emotions in drawing together networks of people and things that facilitated environmental change.
Full research profile and publications

Prof Paul Giles

Prof Paul Giles

Department of English
School of Letters, Art and Media
Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences
The University of Sydney

Paul Giles, Challis Chair of English Literature at the University of Sydney, has an interest in how the politics of nature are represented in the work of contemporary writers and artists, with particular reference to how digital technology coalesces with natural phenomena in the work of David Foster Wallace, Donna Haraway and Patricia Piccinini, as well as in interactions among environmental, animal and human consciousness in the fiction of J. M. Coetzee. His current long-term research project, “Antipodean America,” considers ways in which alternative discourses of nature circulate across a transnational and hemispheric axis.
Full research profile and publications

Nicole Gurran

Nicole Gurran

Urban and Regional Planning Program
Faculty of Architecture, Design & Planning
The University of Sydney

Nicole Gurran’s research projects include the establishment of the Australian Urban Land Use Planning Policy Monitor, enabling the collective analysis of statutory controls for more than 600 local jurisdictions across the country. She is the chief investigator on the Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute (AHURI) project ‘International Practice in Planning for Affordable Housing’. She is also examining best practice in climate change planning for high growth coastal communities for the National Sea Change Taskforce. Gurran’s previous work has examined coastal growth pressures, local government approaches to housing and sustainable urban development, planning for the interface between protected areas and neighbouring settlements and indigenous issues in planning.
Full research profile and publications

Assoc Prof Tess Lea

Assoc Prof Tess Lea

Department of Gender & Cultural Studies
School of Philosophical and Historical Inquiry
Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences
The University of Sydney

Her research interests include housing and environmental health reform; the anthropology of audit and policy; development theory and the will to improve; the tactics of post-colonial power and settler liberal governance; institutional ethnography; neo-liberal governance; urban research; Indigenous school-based education reform; development theory; the co-dependencies between Indigenous and non-Indigenous worlds; class, race and place. Other current ARC-funded linkage projects focus on the trials and tribulations of the Housing for Health program; Indigenous parental engagement with schools; and implementation of the first randomised control trial of a literacy software program, ABRACADABRA, in collaboration with the Centre for Studies in Learning and Performance, Montreal.
Full research profile and publications

Assoc Prof Peter Marks

Assoc Prof Peter Marks

Department of English
School of Letters, Art and Media
Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences
The University of Sydney

Peter Marks is Associate Professor of English at the University of Sydney. His most recent books are British Film Makers: Terry Gilliam (2009), George Orwell the Essayist: Literature, Politics and the Periodical Culture (2011), and (as editor) Literature and Politics: Moving the World in Certain Directions (2012). His research interests include literary and cinematic utopias and dystopias andthe way they represent and investigate ecological questions. These works are intimately concerned with the intricate, often problematic relations between natural and built environments. Inherently speculative and provocative, they offer hopeful visions and timely warnings about the shape of things to come.
Full research profile and publications

Prof Iain McCalman

Prof Iain McCalman

Department of History
School of Philosophical and Historical Inquiry
Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences
The University of Sydney

Iain McCalman AO FAHA FASSA FRHS is a Research Professor in History at the University of Sydney, with numerous books and articles in modern British, European and colonial histories, specialising most recently in cultural, scientific and environmental themes. He is a Fellow of three Learned Academies, writes a regular column for Bloomberg View, and has been a historical consultant and narrator for the BBC, ABC, and other television and film documentaries. He was awarded an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2007 for services to history and the humanities. He is currently writing a book on Encounters with the Great Barrier Reef – from Cook to climate change.
Full research profile and publications

Assoc Prof Phil McManus

Assoc Prof Phil McManus

Division of Geography
School of Geosciences
Faculty of Science
The University of Sydney

My current research focuses on sustainable cities, urban forestry and representations of nature in the construction of a range of environmental issues. Within the area of sustainable cities I am researching the potential to develop Industrial Ecology, the use of metrics such as Ecological Footprints and migration issues such as the tree-change phenomenon in Australia. My research on nature includes human-animal relations, particularly thoroughbred breeding and the uses of nature. My work combines urban environmental history with policy and planning research that is future-oriented.
Full research profile and publications

Dr John Mikler

Dr John Mikler

Department of Government & International Relations
School of Social and Political Sciences
Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences
The University of Sydney

Dr Mikler's position is one focussing on government and business. His research interests are primarily focussed on the role of transnational economic actors, particularly multinational corporations, and the interaction between them and states, international organisations and civil society. He takes a comparative institutionalist perspective to the way in which economic actors are regulated, or exercise private authority, especially in respect of the social and environmental impacts of their instrumentally-motivated actions. His recent research is on the international car industry, applying the Varieties of Capitalism Approach to analyse the actions it is/is not taking in respect of the environmental impacts of its products. He is currently researching the intersection of public and private authority in world affairs, and the national institutional contexts that inform regulatory approaches to climate change.
Full research profile and publications

Dr Jeffrey Neilson

Dr Jeffrey Neilson

Division of Geography
School of Geosciences
Faculty of Science
The University of Sydney

Jeff's research focuses on natural resource management and rural economic development in South and Southeast Asia, with specific area expertise on Indonesia. These interests are explored through two complementary research programs. The first explores the livelihood implications of market engagement for smallholder farmers in the Global South using a value chain framework. The second examines emerging forms of environmental and resource governance arising from the confluence of conventional state structures, civil society organisations and market-driven regulation such as certification schemes and payments for ecosystem services. Jeff is currently involved in research projects addressing sustainable cocoa production in Eastern Indonesia (Sulawesi and Papua), smallholder access to specialty coffee markets (Sulawesi, Flores and Papua), and forest governance, spatial planning and community-based natural resource management (Sumatra). He recently led an Australian Geographic Society expedition across Southeast Asia, where he re-visited the collecting sites of renowned 19th century naturalist, Alfred Russel Wallace.
Full research profile and publications

Assoc Prof Bill Pritchard

Assoc Prof Bill Pritchard

Division of Geography
School of Geosciences
Faculty of Science
The University of Sydney

Bill Pritchard is an economic geographer. His research and teaching addresses the ways that economic, social and cultural processes intermesh with one another to create the specificities of place and space. Within this broad agenda, he focuses on the geographies of global change in agriculture, food and rural places: the ways that the emerging global economy in food and agriculture is transforming places, industries and people's lives. These questions have been pursued through a series of Australian-based and international studies into the global value chains of specific industries (wine grapes, dairy, beef, tomatoes, tea, coffee), complemented by in-depth examination of the policies, rules and institutions that have guided the globalisation project. He remains a skeptical internationalist - believing in the promise of a better world but frustrated by the obstacles that beset this objective.
Full research profile and publications

Prof. Elspeth Probyn

Prof Elspeth Probyn

Department of Gender & Cultural Studies
School of Philosophical and Historical Inquiry
Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences
The University of Sydney

Elspeth Probyn (Fellow of the Australian Academy of Humanities, and Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia) is Professor of Gender & Cultural Studies at the University of Sydney, as well as adjunct Professor of Cultural Geography at the University of Western Australia, and adjunct Research Professor at the University of South Australia. She has taught media, cultural studies and sociology at universities in Canada and the USA, and has held several prestigious visiting appointments around the world. Her work has helped to establish several new areas of scholarship – from embodied research methods to cultural studies of food. Professor Probyn is the author of several groundbreaking monographs and over a hundred articles and chapters across the fields of gender, media, and cultural studies, philosophy, cultural geography, anthropology and critical psychology. Her research (funded by an ARC Discovery Project) analyses the role of place and community within the transglobal food system. She is particularly interested in the sustainability of the production and consumption of fish, or what she calls ‘more-than-human” sustainable fish communities, the results of which will be published in a new book, Oceanic Entanglements (Duke University Press, 2014).
Full research profile and publications

Dr Krishna Shrestha

Dr Krishna Shrestha

School of Social Sciences
Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences
The University of New South Wales

His active research program lies at the intersection between wider economic and political processes and the equity and sustainability outcomes of decentralised nature resource management at the local level. His current projects are in Nepal and Australia. Recently completed research projects are – a) the environmental planning stalemate concerning the Malabar Headland Sydney; b) collaborative planning in Queensland, and c) the politics of equity and sustainability in decentralised natural resource management in NSW. He has also completed projects in equity and sustainability in Nepalese community forestry. He uses a ‘critical realist’ and ‘pragmatic approach’ to environment and development problems in which rigorous explanation is generally balanced with the provision of policy alternatives. Krishna focuses on grounded analysis of socio-ecological dynamics through a multi-scale perspective where the role of unequal power relations in constituting a politicised environment is a central theme. His research projects give particular attention to the ways in which problems of natural resource management are linked to systems of social hierarchy and political and economic control which affect poor and minority groups. Most of his work has been based on empirical social science research or action-research, particularly in South Asia (Nepal and India) and Australia.
Full research profile and publications

Assoc Prof Jody Webster

Assoc Prof Jody Webster

School of Geosciences
Geocoastal Research Group
The University of Sydney

Jody Webster is an Associate Professor in the School of Geosciences at the University of Sydney. His research is focused on coral reefs, both modern and ancient; as tools to address questions about sea level and paleoclimate change, and in turn the influence of these factors on reef evolution. Associate Professor Webster has a PhD from the University of Sydney and worked at several US research institutions. He represents Australian and New Zealand (ANZIC) in the International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) and in 2010 led an international drilling expedition to investigate past climate change and the Great Barrier Reef.
Full research profile and publications

Prof Christopher Wright

Prof Christopher Wright

Discipline of Work and Organisational Studies
Business School
The University of Sydney

My research focuses on the diffusion of management knowledge, managerial and professional identity, and technological and workplace change. Currently I am researching business responses to climate change, focusing on the concept of 'green change agency' within major corporations, and the role of justification and compromise in corporate environmental sustainability. My work has appeared in leading international journals including Environment & Planning A, Research Policy, Organization Studies, Human Relations, British Journal of Management, Organization, and Work, Employment & Society. I am currently team leader of an Australian Research Council Discovery project (2011-2013) into Australian business responses to climate change.
Full research profile and publications