I am an Adjunct Lecturer at the University of New South Wales and a Research and Analysis Officer at the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage. I am an ecologist and a social scientist and combine my diverse skill set to research human dimensions of socio-ecological systems. I work at the interface between theory and practice, collaborating extensively with universities, park agencies and other government organisations.
I have a passion for interdisciplinary research and delivering the science necessary to integrate human needs and aspirations with the conservation of ecosystems. This has expanded my research from purely ecologically focused work to research on the benefits of ecosystems for people's daily lives, for instance, in their recreation activities. I believe that building a constituency and support for conservation is closely linked to people's appreciation and attachment to natural ecosystems which they form through meaningful and positive experiences with nature.
I am intrigued by the power of using GIS and GPS to manage and monitor visitors' usage of natural ecosystems. This has lead me to conduct a range of fascinating projects on mountain biking, horse-riding, hiking, running and sightseeing in national parks. These projects require extensive stakeholder/community involvement and management.
In my research I use a range of tools, with particular focus on GPS tracking and cutting-edge public participatory GIS mapping (PPGIS; http://www.landscapemap2.org/index.html). Technical expertise includes spatial analysis, office-and field-based environmental and social science skills, the latter involving qualitative and quantitative approaches. I also teach environmental scientists how to design reliable instruments to survey people with questionnaires or to conduct interviews.