EARLY CAREER RESEARCHERS

CMS Postdocs

CMS PhD students
Angela Abolhassani
PhD Student
Angela has a background in international fisheries management law and policy. Her research examines conflicts among states within regional fisheries management organizations (RFMOs) that regulate tuna. Angela’s PhD will interrogate how norms of equity and cooperation reflected in international law on transboundary fish stocks are frustrated by the institutional design and operation of RFMOs.
Florence Britton
PhD Student
I am a French PhD student in co-tutelle between UTAS and the University of Western Brittany (France). My project aims at exploring and evaluating alternative harvest control rules for multispecies fisheries (i.e. where multiple species are simultaneously caught during single fishing operations) under quota management. I am addressing this question using a multispecies and multi-fleet bio-economic model applied to both the Bay of Biscay demersal fishery (France) and the South East Shark and Scalefish Fishery (Australia). More precisely, I am looking whether we can set quotas that ensure the sustainability of the harvested stocks while maintaining the fishery economically viable and attractive for crews, and meeting the consumers’ demand for fish.
Lynnlee Chikudza
PhD Students
Lynnlee Chikudza is a PhD student in the Centre for Marine Socioecology and the Institute for Marine and Antarctic, Though she was born in a landlocked country moving to Namibia and seeing the Atlantic coast for the first time gave her the zeal to know more about the ocean. She has had the opportunity to live and enjoy coastal areas in Namibia, Scotland, France and Greece. Studies at the University of Tasmania.
Corrine Condie
PhD Student
Corrine’s background is in market research and communication. Her PhD research will develop a framework to support management decision-making aimed at reducing stakeholder conflict in Tasmania’s aquaculture industry. In particular, the structural and mechanistic changes that are required for successful operation in the new paradigm of complex communication networks, transnational debate and increasing public unrest. The research will use social network analysis and dynamic network modelling to understand the changes observed in communication networks, and then test alternative strategies aimed at reducing conflict by narrowing ‘perception gaps’ between stakeholder groups.
Lynna Cortes Rueda
PhD Student
My research project will identify the mechanisms by which developing countries can enhance implementation of the precautionary principle in fisheries management through domestic law and policy, based on an in-depth comparative analysis of the legal regimes for fisheries management in one developed country (Australia) and two developing countries (Colombia and Chile).
Coco Cullen-Knox
PhD Student
Coco’s research explores mediated environmental conflict in relation to seafood and target markets. Her study seeks to understand how environmental concerns are produced, communicated, responded to and resolved between pressure groups, governments and industry in the context of regional politics, trade, consumption, sustainability and media technologies. This is achieved by following issues and campaigns that seek to influence political, corporate and consumer behaviour. Her research will provide insight into the capacity for environmental campaigning and mediated public debate to influence environmental and market related decision-making in an increasingly transnational world.
Cloe Cummings
PhD Student
My research topic involves interdisciplinary research on the relationship between seals and fisheries in Tasmania. I am focusing especially on developing a baseline understanding of Australian fur seal foraging behaviour and diet, and on using social research methods to progress the conversation about coexistence with wildlife while producing oceanic food.
Hannah Fogarty
PhD Student
My research interests include understanding the implications of climate change on marine ecosystems and natural resources, as well as fisheries management adaptations for climate change. My earlier research investigated the use of “first sightings” of species outside their normal range as early detectors for climate-driven species range shifts, while my PhD further investigates biological changes driven by climate change, and what implications these have on Australian state fisheries. My PhD aims to identify ways for Australian state fisheries to prepare for the effects of long-term climate change through management adaptation, by utilising various quantitative and qualitative research methods.
Liam Fulbrook
PhD Student

Liam’s research focuses on assessing options for enhanced utilisation of Australia’s Economic Exclusive Zone (EEZ). The objective is to provide recommendations for resilient and sustainable allocation regimes which will be tailored for the various jurisdictional, resource and environmental contexts. This will involve establishing the global drivers for future offshore development, evaluating integrated management strategies around the world and assessing options for Australia including what legal, jurisdictional and governance issues may have to be altered to enable future sustainable development. Liam has a background in marine and environmental science and has previously worked in environmental consultancy and science communication.

Lynda Goldsworthy
PhD Student
Lyn has a background in conservation science and advocacy, including an 35 year involvement in Antarctic conservation policy and global fisheries management. Her project will explore how the Convention for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) can adapt its management strategies to achieve its objective of conservation of the Southern Ocean in a climate adapting environment.
Bianca Haas
PhD Student
I am interested in the sustainable utilisation of marine resources, particularly of fish in areas beyond national jurisdictions. Fish is an important source of food, however most harvest species are considered to be overfished. To mitigate human impacts on the ecosystem, states come together and founded agreements which influence existing organisations such as Regional fisheries management organisations, the only institution which regulates fisheries in the high seas. The interplay of environmental agreements, for example the Sustainable Development Goals, and the fisheries organisations is important for sustainable utilisation of fish resources. The aim of my PhD is to identify the links and interactions among fisheries organisations and environmental agreements for better fisheries management.
Sheryl Hamilton
PhD Student
Sheryl is researching mitigation techniques for reducing marine mammal bycatch in commercial fishing gear. In particular, she is assessing the effectiveness of exclusion devices in trawl nets to reduce seal and sea lion mortality in Australian and New Zealand fisheries. Sheryl has a background in seabird ecology, wildlife population monitoring and environmental consulting, including assessments of the impact of fisheries bycatch on seabird, seal and sea lion populations.
Linda Hunt
PhD Student
Linda’s research explores news media representations of Antarctica. In particular, she is interested in how the news frames Australia’s interests in Antarctica and how this influences public discourse and subsequent policy development. This is considered in the context of Australia’s long-standing connection with the continent, the geopolitics of Antarctic governance and the risk posed by a changing climate. She is particularly interested in the structural factors that influence reporting of Australia’s interests in Antarctica and how this may determine what is made visible through the media. Linda has a background in media and communication and is a former ABC News journalist. She is based at the University of Tasmania’s Media School, where she is an Associate Lecturer in Media and Communication.
Sierra Ison
PhD Student

Sierra’s background is primarily in sustainable fisheries and marine conservation. Her project aims to adapt the framework of outcome mapping to enhance conservation action using a comprehensive case study of the Northwest Shelf Flatback Turtle Conservation Program. This will be achieved through stakeholder engagement by focusing on people: their behaviours, relationships, networks, actions and activities. Her research will provide insight into the use of outcome mapping to facilitate adaptive management.

Dimuthu Jayakody
PhD Student
Dimuthu has a background in marine biology and protected area management and has worked with the IUCN and other ENGOs in several coastal development projects in Sri Lanka. Her PhD seeks to understand the ‘Role of Place’ in shaping climate adaptation. Utilizing various qualitative and quantitative methods, this research will map community place attachments in the East Coast of Tasmania against predicted marine and coastal climate vulnerabilities of the region. This research aims to understand the way in which place attachment has impacted climate adaptation in the region and how place attachment can be integrated into decision-making and climate change policy adaptation.
Malcolm Johnson
PhD Student
With an interest in the more-than-human assemblages of coastal areas and a research background in sociology, environmental science, and international coastal resource management, Malcolm continues to find himself at the intersection of community-based management and integrated ecosystem-based management of coastal and marine protected areas. Drawing on his past experiences, his PhD research explores the relationships between assigned landscape values, perceived climate change risks, and socio-ecological discourses in the Huon Valley coastalscape. Employing a hybrid methodology that includes hydro-spatial decision support systems, semi-structured interviews, public participation GIS, and Q-method, this projects aims to reconsider the framing of climate change adaptation through an object-oriented landscape theoretical lens.
Denis Karcher
PhD Student
Denis is an interdisciplinary marine scientist with a focus on knowledge transitions, coral reefs and conservation. He holds an undergraduate degree in environmental science and – hydrology and a Master’s in marine biology. For his Master’s thesis research, Denis investigated multilevel eutrophication effects on coral reef benthic communities in the Red Sea (Saudi Arabia). Later, he joined the European Institute for Marine Studies in Brest (France) investigating how data can be shared more efficiently, as well as the French National Research Institute for Sustainable Development (France) where he focused on South Pacific fisheries management. Denis’ PhD project Connecting science with policy and practice: Lessons from science-policy ‘Bright Spots’ aims to empirically evaluate successful science-policy-practice transitions and generate knowledge and guidance from such positive examples.
Mohammad Khodajouei
PhD Student
Mo’s research is focused around how one can best apply GIS techniques to integrate a range of information (i.e. operational, environmental and social) to improve spatial planning, decision support and management outcomes.
Katie Marx
PhD student
Katie has a background in community development, social and environmental advocacy, and cultural studies, and plans to draw on this experience to investigate civic participation in the Antarctic gateway cities. Taking a particular focus on Hobart and Punta Arenas (Chile), Katie’s project will use a variety of social research methods, including rapid policy network analysis and in-depth interviewing, to examine the ways in which local residents benefit from and contribute to their city’s Antarctic activities. She aims to use this research to develop new frameworks for participation that can be inform future community engagement strategies in the marine and Antarctic sector.
Michael Murunga
PhD Student
Michael has a disciplinary background in environmental and institutional governance with a preference for knowing why people work together. He uses this experience to examine science communication and engagement activities. His work employs qualitative methods to establish how and why the public engages with science and vice versa. His research aims to advance and inform interplays between the public and science.
Clare Pitt
PhD Student
Clare’s PhD project is a multidisciplinary collaboration investigating the impact of different science and art-based mediums of communication about climate change. Her project aims to assess whether these different modes of communication are able to create attitude and behaviour change intentions. These findings will contribute to the development of an evidence-based understanding of the impacts of climate change information, which will help communicators to be more effective in transmitting their messages. Clare holds a BPsychSc (Hons), a BA (Nature Tourism) and has a background in managing bush adventure therapy programs.
Niyomi Ayesha Pethiyagoda
PhD Student
My research interest is broadly aimed at Ecosystem valuation and policy evaluation particularly with regard to Coastal and Marine Ecosystems. The overall research objective of my PhD project is applying economic analysis to know the future investment opportunities in different aquaculture management options and, thereby application of discrete choice modelling to value the impact of Aquaculture on Coastal and marine ecosystems in Tasmania.
Peter Puskic
PhD Student
Interested in anthropogenic impacts on wildlife and ecosystems, Peter originally completed his undergraduate degrees in Zoology and Archaeology. At the time it this seemed like a somewhat unlikely pairing, but now very fitting as he studies ‘Future Fossils’: plastic pollution. Peter’s PhD tries to detect the impacts of plastic and associated chemical pollution on wildlife. This uses multidisciplinary approaches such as animal health, molecular, ecotoxicological, and animal nutrition tools to explore the effects of plastic ingestion in seabirds. Peter loves science communication and community science as he sees this as an effective way to engage local communities in the prevention of pollution and encourage sustainable behaviours. Peter is an ECR co-lead on the Future Seas paper ‘Cleaner Seas.’
Pricilla Rakotoarisoa
PhD Student
My main background is a multidisciplinary ocean science. I am also interested in macroeconomy, governance and political economy. My PhD project is about the political ecology of the blue economy. My research aims to investigate key elements of a planned sustainable blue economy, from global scales to Madagascar and Tasmania as national and sub-national ‘blue economies’.
Tormey Reimer
PhD Student
Tormey comes from an ecology background and is interested in using her aquaculture and modelling knowledge to inform industry. Her PhD will be using environmental and ecological modelling to evaluate the impacts and remediation potential of native seaweeds in integrated multi-trophic aquaculture. She hopes her work will better inform industry, governments and the community on how to reduce the environmental impacts of salmon farming and improve the sustainability of human activities.
Kelsey Richardson
PhD Student
Kelsey is researching the amounts, types, fates and impacts of fishing gear loss from major commercial fisheries around the world. Her research is multidisciplinary, and combines a quantitative, statistical approach to identify gear loss with an examination of governance regimes that mitigate and manage gear loss to highlight effective offset strategies that reduce gear loss and its associated impacts. Kelsey has a background in marine conservation and international environmental policy, with an ongoing focus on the global marine debris issue.
Carla Sbrocchi
PhD Student (UTS)
Carla is based at the University of Technology Sydney and is an external CMS member. Her work focuses on how to integrate social information into fisheries decision making. In particular, she is exploring a range of qualitative and quantitative methods (e.g. bayesian networks) to find what are the most effective means of integrating social, ecological and economic aspects for decision-making.
Catarina Serra Goncalves
PhD Student
Catarina's background is largely focused on uncovering the complexities of human impacts on ecosystems, mainly working with marine pollution and community-based conservation projects.  For her PhD, she is researching the effectiveness of multiple mitigation strategies aimed to reduce marine debris in the environment at different organizational levels (from local to national) by working closely with Australian communities and Tangaroa Blue Foundation.
Danielle Smith
PhD Student
My research looks at how international law might assist in resolving disputes over the interpretation of ‘rational use’ in the context of conservation within the CAMLR Convention. It will focus on how the process of establishing MPAs in the Southern Ocean, deriving lessons learnt about management, monitoring, compliance and enforcement. It will also look at how CCAMLR’s role may change and/or adapt with the new emerging legal instruments enforcing establishment of MPAs in areas beyond national jurisdiction under UNCLOS.
Theresa Stoll
PhD Student
Lisa Uffman-Kirsch
PhD Student
A member of the Washington, D.C. bar, Lisa’s academic background has focused on marine conservation, marine fisheries and Law of the Sea. Her doctoral research investigates legal approval processes for marine activities and their relationship with community involvement and project acceptance. It considers whether embedding community engagement into legal approval processes for marine projects reduces conflict and allows development of positive social license. She ultimately seeks to develop mechanisms by which to incorporate elements of the free, prior and informed consent (FPIC) framework into marine legal approval processes. This involves challenging new requirements for determining who constitutes the ‘affected community’, whose values are important, and what provides legal basis for their FPIC rights.
Kathryn Willis
Phd Student
Kathryn's research is on evaluating different types of government activities and their effect on reducing littering in the environment. The research focuses on three categories: investment in infrastructure and facilities, development of policies, outreach and other education programs. The study will initially evaluate activities within Australia and then broaden to allow comparisons with the Asia-Pacific coastal countries.