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Summary

Biography

I am a multidisciplinary data manager and analyst with over 15 years experience at seven Australian universities and the CSIRO, especially the ANU. I am currently a Data Scientist at the University of Canberra Health Research Institute. I recently submitted my PhD at the ANU. Until 2013 I worked closely with Tony McMichael's Climate Change and Health programme at ANU. In 2014/15 I led the development of the data portal for the Long Term Ecological Research Network. I work on data analysis that disentangles health effects of environmental changes from social factors. I give special attention to issues of data management, security, privacy and ethics, with my research into climate and mental health as a key motivating use-case.

I have primarily worked in environmental epidemiology, building on the systems approach I gained from my undergraduate training in human ecology at ANU. My PhD research focused on reproducible research pipelines, integration of heterogeneous datasets and statistical modelling of exposure-response associations in the context of complex multifactorial causality. My studies include phenomena such as the effects of drought and extreme heat on mental health. The conceptual framework I used for integrating these data incorporates the idea of five interacting 'capitals' and I explored the areas of differential vulnerability across sub-populations, precision of spatio-temporal exposure estimates and general issues of geospatial data analysis methods.

I have been both lead author and contributing author on 22 peer-reviewed journal papers. I have contributed to 6 reports and 14 conference presentations. My Scopus h-index is 11. My contributions have spanned the range from designing study protocols, creating datasets, conducting analyses and communicating results. The integration of gridded, point-source and area-based administrative data has become a speciality. In particular I have experience in the integration of health, social and environmental data which involves reconciling health and socio-economic or population data based on incompatible spatial units. I also am adept at the creation of linked environmental exposure maps and computer programming. Alongside my experience in analysis of empirical data I have experience in scenario-based forecasting in climate change risk assessments.

Research Interests

  • Environmental and social determinants of health
  • Eco-social tipping points
  • Extreme weather events such as droughts, bushfires, woodsmoke, duststorms, and heat-waves
  • Differential vulnerability across different subgroups of people, in different regions and stages of their lives.

Qualifications Obtained

  • 2009-2016 (submitted): Part-time PhD Disentangling Health Effects of Environmental Change from Social Factors, ANU.
  • 1998-2005: Bachelor of Arts in Geography and Human Ecology, First Class Honours, ANU.

Grants

  • 2012, A Scientific Workflow System for Assessing and Projecting the Health Impacts of Extreme Weather Events. Australian National Data Service Applications project. PI Keith Dear, ANU.
  • 2011, Dengue Transmission under Climate Change in Northern Australia: Linking Ecological and Population Data. NH&MRC. PI David Harley, ANU.
  • 2010, Suicide and Drought: Understanding Human Impacts of Environmental Change. CSIRO PhD Scholarship top-up. PI Ivan Hanigan, ANU.
  • 2010, Climate Change and Rural Communities: Integrated study of physical and social impacts, health risks and adaptive options. NH&MRC. PI Anthony McMichael, ANU.
  • 2009, I was named as Professional Staff on Understanding the Health Effects of Landscape Burning and Biomass Smoke. ARC. PI Prof David Bowman UTAS.
  • 2005, Health Forecasting System, NSW Health. PI Rennie D'Souza, ANU.

Awards

  • Honorable mention by NatStats 2013 Conference Awards judging panel (Brisbane Aust. March 2013):
  • Nov 2012 Bhati Family India Travel Grant.
  • Oct 2012 Runner Up, Australian National Data Service eResearch tools for the National Cloud competition.