I’m interested in how scientific approaches can be used to
promote legal and sustainable utilisation of the world’s forest resources. Primarily this involves the application of DNA identification technologies but I’m also involved with the broader application and integration of complementary visual, genetic and chemical analysis methods. How scientific methods developed in an academic framework can be usefully translated and prepared for use as forensic tools, is another area of focus.
Within the Lowe lab Group I manage the Timber Tracking activities, including a diverse suite of research and commercial projects, as well as ad-hoc forensic case work.
My undergraduate and honours studies were completed at the University of Bristol in the UK. I’m currently working at the post-doc level, after completing my PhD in plant population genetics at the University of Adelaide in 2013. I also consult for the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, helping to coordinate their efforts in promoting the use of forensic timber identification.
Our group recently led a successful ARC LIEF application which will see the development of the Advanced DNA Identification and Forensics Facility in Australia, bringing together expertise in human, wildlife and forest/environmental DNA identification and forensics. I’m looking forward to working closely with our colleagues at Flinders University, the Australian Museum, the South Australian Museum, the State Herbarium, AGRF, ANZPAA and Double Helix to make this ambitious endeavour a success.
I live in the northern suburbs of Adelaide with my husband and two young children, juggling the demands of parenthood and an academic career. I’m very lucky to have an understanding group leader (Andy Lowe), and supportive husband (Rod) who both help make this possible. I’m very keen to pay it forward and help support others who would like to have an actual outside family life as well as a job in science!