• The University of Western Australia (M084), 35 Stirling Highway,

    6009 Perth


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Personal profile


To view a managed list of my publications, please go to Google Scholar.


I gained an Honours degree in agriculture from the University of Nottingham and a PhD from the Department of Plant Science, University of Cambridge, UK. I have engaged in research in a range of organisms but with a focus on crop plant genomics. Following my PhD studies which identified functionally conserved genes between plants and fungi, I worked briefly in the Genetics Department of the University of Cambridge on rice genome structure before joining Long Ashton Research Station, Bristol, UK. During my time in Bristol, I studied tissue specific gene regulation, cereal gene function and bioinformatics. We developed cereal microarrays for both high throughput transposon mutagenesis and gene expression profiling along with computational tools for sequence data analysis and molecular marker discovery.

I joined the Victorian Department of Primary Industries in 2002 to lead a team in Brassica genomics and establish capabilities in bioinformatics. I established a strawberry genomics program and led Australia’s participation in the Multinational Brassica Genome Project. The computational biology group was particularly successful, with established international linkages and capabilities demonstrated through student and staff training as well as numerous peer reviewed publications.

In 2007, I moved to the University of Queensland as an Associate Professor (level D) to support bioinformatics for the Australian Centre for Plant Functional Genomics and establish a research group in applied bioinformatics. In 2011 I was promoted to Professor (level E). During this period, I established a dedicated applied bioinformatics research group and contributed to honours and masters level courses in plant science and bioinformatics. Research during this period led to 69 peer reviewed publications including high impact journals such as Science (4), Nature Genetics, Nature Biotechnology, Nature Communications and Genome Biology (3), funded by more than $10m in competitive research grants. In January 2015 I accepted an ongoing position as Professor in cereal genomics at the University of Western Australia. My current research activities include the characterisation of complex plant genomes, translational genomics and genome informatics, with a focus on wheat, Brassica and chickpea crops. Details of my current research activities and links to publications are available through my group home page: http://www.appliedbioinformatics.com.au/

Previous positions

Academic history:

PhD University of Cambridge 2000
BSc (Hons) University of Nottingham 1989

Recent posts:

2015 - present Professor, University of Western Australia, Crawley, Australia
2011 - 2015 Professor, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia
2007 - 2011 Associate Professor, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia
2002 - 2007 Plant Biotechnology Centre, Melbourne, Australia.
1997 - 2002 IACR Long Ashton, University of Bristol, UK.

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 7 - Affordable and Clean Energy
  • SDG 12 - Responsible Consumption and Production
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action
  • SDG 14 - Life Below Water

Research expertise keywords

  • Genomics: structure, expression and variation
  • Bioinformatics
  • Crop improvement
  • Evolution
  • Climate change