1 June 2018

The University of Queensland has a range of experts available to talk to media in relation to World Environment Day on 5 June and World Oceans Day on 8 June.

Journalists can contact the following experts or search by topic or name at UQ experts.


Associate Professor Matt McDonald is an expert on climate politics, Australia foreign policy and international security. On climate change, and in particular its relationship to security, Matt has acted as a consultant for the UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office and prominent public policy think tanks such as the Royal United Services Institute (UK). He has also worked with policy-makers, industry groups and NGO representatives in communicating research work on the politics of climate change in Australia.

Contact: matt.mcdonald@uq.edu.au, +61 7 3365 3042, 0451 302 030

Professor Ove Hoegh Guldberg is Deputy Director of the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies. He has actively collaborated with the Great Barrier Reef Foundation, the Royal Society of London and The World Bank, as well as advising government and business on the science and urgency associated with climate change. 

Contact: oveh@uq.edu.au , +61 7 3443 3111, 0438 285 283

Dr Belinda Wade is an expert for organisational action on sustainability issues without waiting for certainty, the capabilities organisations can take in promoting change and the implications of sustainable innovation.

Contact: b.wade@business.uq.com.au, +61 7 3443 2005

Dr Cle-Anne Gabriel is an expert in sustainability from a renewable energy/policy advice view point. She is an internationally trained and experienced sustainability and development specialist. She has worked on projects and assignments funded by organisations such as Australian Aid (AusAID), the European Union (EU) and New Zealand’s Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE).

Contact: c.gabriel@business.uq.edu.au, +61 7 3346 8148, 0481 596 939


Professor Tom Baldock has researched coastal and ocean engineering, as well as renewable energy. His current projects include a multi-partner CSIRO cluster project under the Wealth from Oceans flagship investigating tsunami impact on ultra-long submarine pipelines, as well as storm surge and wave run-up on the Australian east coast. 

Contact: t.baldock@uq.edu.au, +61 7 3346 9432

Professor Justin Marshall is a zoologist at the Queensland Brain Institute whose primary field of research is vision in marine animals, but his frequent visits have given him ample opportunity to observe the quality of various parts of the Great Barrier Reef.

Contact: Justin.marshall@uq.edu.au, +61 7 3365 1397, 0423 024 162

Dr Sophie Dove and her team of coral biologists have been exploring factors such as temperature, carbon dioxide, acidification, seasonal changes and competitors to determine which organisms will be the winners in the future on the Great Barrier Reef and will they be able to sustain the large biomass of primary and secondary consumers that currently exist on reefs.  

Contact: s.dove@cms.uq.edu.au , +61 7 3365 7229

Professor Peter Mumby of the School of Biological Sciences focuses on delivering science to improve the management of coral reefs Australia and internationally. He was awarded a Pew Fellowship in Marine Conservation in 2010, and is also winner of the Rosenstiel Award for excellence in marine biology and fisheries, and the Marsh Award for contributions to marine conservation.

Contact: p.j.mumby@uq.edu.au, +61 7 3365 1686, 0449 811 589

Professor John Pandolfi of the School of Biological Sciences is a professor in palaeoecology and marine studies, studying the long-term ecology of coral reefs and using historical ecology to guide reef management actions Australia and internationally.

Contact: j.pandolfi@uq.edu.au, +61 7 3365 3050, 0400 982 301

Dr Selina Ward from the School of Biological Sciences studies coral reef ecology and physiology, including the response of corals to environmental stress, the effects of bleaching on coral reproduction and the recovery process of corals following bleaching.  

Contact: selinaward@uq.edu.au, +61 7 336 53307, 0434 011 988


Dr Justine Bell-James can comment on legal issues regarding protection of coastal ecosystems like mangroves and seagrass, protection of the Great Barrier Reef, and biodiversity offsets in the coastal context. Legal, policy and insurance responses to coastal hazards and sea-level rise.

Contact: j.bell-james@law.uq.edu.au, +61 7 3365 6588, 0439 651 107

Professor Jamie Shulmeister has worked extensively on climate change with a focus on glaciers, vegetation histories and environmental impacts on lakes. He has undertaken research in Northern Australia, New Zealand, Timor and in the Antarctic.

Contact: james.shulmeister@uq.edu.au, +61 7 3346 1644, 0401 001 254

Professor Hamish McGowan is a geographer who can talk about climate change and variability, wind erosion, weather and dust storms.  His research interests include the Earth’s surface, the weather and climates of Alpine and mountainous districts.

Contact: h.mcgowan@uq.edu.au, +61 7 3365 6651

Dr Nina Hall  is Program Manager for the Sustainable Water program at UQ’s Global Change Institute. Her areas of expertise include water management, water for development and water, sanitation and hygiene. She’s also able to speak about renewable energy choices and uptake (especially wind farms), sustainability and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Contact: n.hall2@uq.edu.au, +61 7 3443 3104, 0415 750 957

Associate Professor Ron Johnstone  has a long history in coastal nutrient and ecosystem research, microbial ecology, and wireless sensor technology to monitor water. He’s also experienced in communicating science to the community, government and private sector bodies.

Contact:  r.johnstone@uq.edu.au, +61 7 3365 3978

Professor Catherine Lovelock of the School of Biological Sciences is researching mangrove forest physiology and ecology, and “Blue Carbon”.  She is studying the influence of environmental change, including climate change, on coastal and marine plant ecology and in providing knowledge to conserve and restore these ecosystems.

Contact: c.lovelock@uq.edu.au, +61 7 3365 2304


Dr Bronwyn Laycock has a diverse background in translational research in degradable polymers, biomaterials, organic and organometallic synthesis, pulp and paper chemistry, and general polymer chemistry. Her work seeks to address some of the challenges around global sustainability and planetary boundaries, such as nutrient recovery and efficient use, controlled release formulations and other sustainable materials, particularly bio-derived materials for packaging, film and other applications. 

Contact: b.laycock@uq.edu.au, +61 7 3346 8882

Associate Professor Steven Pratt leads research on process development for sustainable waste management. His research focus is on utilising waste streams as feedstocks for the production of biomaterials and biofuels.

Contact: s.pratt@uq.edu.au , +61 7 3365 4943

Professor Kerrie Wilson is an expert in conservation and environment, Director of the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions, and an Affiliated Professor in Conservation Science at The University of Copenhagen. Her awards include an Australian Museum Eureka Prize for Outstanding Young Researcher, the Prime Minister's Prize for Life Scientist of the Year, and the Australian Academy of Science Nancy Millis Medal for Women in Science.

Contact: k.wilson2@uq.edu.au, +61 7 3365 2829  

Professor Hugh Possingham of the School of Biological Sciences is the Chief Scientist of The Nature Conservancy (TNC), the world’s largest environmental non-government organisation. He is Queensland's only US National Academy of Sciences member. His research interests are in conservation research, operations research and ecology. More specifically, his lab works on problems to secure the world's biological diversity.

Contact: h.possingham@uq.edu.au, +61 7 3365 9766, 0434 079 061

Professor Richard Fuller is a bird and conservation expert from the School of Biological Sciences. He is studying how people have affected the natural world around them, and how some of their destructive effects can best be reversed. On the flip side, he also is researching whether people can benefit positively from experiences of biodiversity.

Contact: r.fuller@uq.edu.au, +61 7 334 69912 or 0458 353 102

Associate Professor Kristen Lyons is a sociologist with more than 20 years of researching issues related to the environment, development and human rights. She’s worked to deliver social just outcomes, including for some of the world’s most vulnerable communities in Uganda, Solomon Islands and Australia.

Contact: kristen.lyons@uq.edu.au, +61 7 3365 2020, 0437 332 732

Other enquiries: communications@uq.edu.au, 3365 1120 or 0413 601 248.