Karen Lee-Waddell

Karen Lee-Waddell

Dr, BSc, BA, MSc, PhD, CD

  • The University of Western Australia (M468), 35 Stirling Highway,

    6009 Perth


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Personal profile

Roles and responsibilities

Dr Karen Lee-Waddell is the Director of the Australian SKA Regional Centre (AusSRC, https://aussrc.org), jointly appointed at ICRAR and CSIRO. In this role, she is leading the Australian effort to build computing and data intensive research capabilities that will support astronomers using the current and next generation of radio telescopes.

Karen is also currently the Project Scientist for WALLABY (https://wallaby-survey.org), the all-sky neutral hydrogen survey that is being conducted on CSIRO’s newest telescope, the Australian Square Kilometre Array Pathfinder (ASKAP). 


Karen completed all of her education in Ontario, Canada -- including a PhD at Queen’s University, MSc at the Royal Military College of Canada, BA(hons) at McMaster University, and a BSc(hons) also at McMaster. 

In 2015, she moved to Sydney, Australia as a Postdoctoral Fellow to pursue a dream of exploring the Universe with the technology made possible by CSIRO and the Australia Telescope National Facility. Karen’s research focuses on galaxy interactions and physical processes governing these systems, in order to better understand how the Universe is evolving and hopefully solve some of the greatest mysteries of the still unknown.

Karen is also passionate about science education and public outreach. She often volunteers in schools (as a part of the STEM Professionals in Schools program) and contributes to events aimed at sharing science and research with society, hoping to inspire the next generation of scientists.

Previous positions

During her first undergraduate degree, Karen joined the Royal Canadian Navy as a Logistics Officer. For 13 years, she was an active Reservist serving with units in Canada -- primarily HMCS STAR and HMCS CATARAQUI -- and in Australia (as a foreign exchange officer) working with the 8th Combat Service Support Battalion.

Education/Academic qualification

Astrophysics & Astronomy, PhD, Queen's University Kingston

Sep 2011Aug 2015

Award Date: 1 Nov 2015

Space Sciences, MSc, Royal Military College of Canada

Sep 2009Aug 2011

Award Date: 17 Nov 2011

Classics, BA (hons), McMaster University

Sep 2007Apr 2009

Award Date: 8 Jun 2009

Physics, BSc (hons), McMaster University

Sep 2003Apr 2007

Award Date: 5 Jun 2007

External positions

WALLABY Project Scientist

Research expertise keywords

  • Astrophysics and astronomy
  • Radio astronomy
  • Extragalactic astronomy
  • Neutral hydrogen in galaxies
  • Galaxy interactions
  • Instrumentation - ASKAP, SKA
  • Data processing


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