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Personal profile

Monash teaching commitment

I teach in several courses on plant science, global change and plant ecology and supervise honours, masters and PhD students.

I coordinate and am principle lecturer in the undergraduate core plant science unit BIO2030 (Food Security in a changing world) and the Masters of Food and Agribusiness unit FSA5070 (Future Food Supply and Security).

I led the Faculty core undergraduate science units at Monash on scientific practice and communication science (SCI2010 and SCI2015) from 2005-2019.

I am a pioneer in the use of new technology in higher education and publish in that field. I also teach postgraduate courses on science communication and also publish on the importance of science communication. 

As part of my public outreach, I give public lectures on the impact of rising carbon dioxide on food security and the invasive tree  Pittosporum undulatum.

Research interests

My research is on the effect of climate change on food security with a focus on plants that make cyanide as a herbivore defence, examining the issues from the molecular through to the ecosystem, and even global scales. Current projects are on the effect of CO2, temperature and salinity on growth and allocation of resources in sorghum, cassava, taro and cycads. I have an on-ongoing interest arising from my early research on invasive Pittosporum undulatum

Community service

Positions of national and international significance include

President, Global Plant Council

Board member, Eucalypt Australia 

Organising Committee for  International Plant Molecular Biology, Cairns, 2021

Organising committee member, ComBio2020, Melbourne

Public Policy and Communication Committee, Royal Society of Victoria

Past President, Australian Society of Plant Scientists

Past member, Australian Academy of Science National Committees for Plants and Animals, and Agriculture, Fisheries and Food

Society of Experimental Biology 

University positions include:

Coordinator of the Plant Science area of study

Deputy Director of the Agtech LaunchPad

Monash Immersive Visualisation Platform (MIVP) Research Advisory Panel member

Faculty of Science Board of Studies

Masters of Food Science and Agribusiness, Oversight and Coursework Management Committee

Faculty of Science Overseas Studies Program Panel



Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 2 - Zero Hunger
  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action

External positions

President, Australian Society of Plant Scientists


Research Fellow, University of Melbourne


Research Assistant, University of Melbourne


Research area keywords

  • Agriculture/Food Sciences
  • Climate Change
  • Plant Physiology
  • Secondary Metabolism
  • Plant-Animal Interactions
  • Cyanogenesis
  • Ecophysiology
  • Cassava
  • Sorghum
  • Plant Metabolism
  • Science Communication
  • Higher Education


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