Areas of expertise
- Palaeoecology 060206
- Archaeological Science 210102
- Palaeoclimatology 040605
- Palaeontology (Incl. Palynology) 040308
- Quaternary Environments 040606
Palaeoecology, Palynology; Palaeoclimatology; Fire History, Indian Ocean, Melanesia, Australia and Pacific Islands; See interview in Quarterly Bulletin, Dec 2003 (Download PDF); see PalaeoWorks website for full details on research and publication downloads.
Simon completed his PhD at ANU on the Late Quaternary Environmental History of the Tari Basin, Papua New Guinea, in 1994. While holding postdoctoral positions at the Smithsonian (STRI, Panama) and at the University of Cambridge he continued to pursue his interest in the role of past climate change and human activity on tropical and temperate ecosystems through work in the Amazon Basin and southern South America. His research is currently focussed on the application of high-resolution palaeoecological analysis to our understanding of the impact of climate variability and human activity on terrestrial ecosystems of the Pacific and Indian Oceans during the Holocene. He is also developing e-Research tools in palaeoecology such as the Australasian Pollen and Spore Atlas and the PalaeoWorks website. He is currently using his knowledge of Australian pollen to explore the impact of atmospheric pollen and spores on respiratory health.
I am currently serving 5 years membership of the International Advisory Board for the Graduate School of Human Development in Landscapes, University of Kiel (Germany). I am Chair of the College of Asia and the Pacific Reconciliation Action Plan committee (2010-) and elected Chair of the College Forum (CAP 2007-2008); Director of the Centre for Archaeological Research (2006-2009); President of the Australasian Quaternary Association (2000-2004); QEII (ARC) Research Fellow investigating the impact of El Niño-related climate variability on tropical rain forest ecosystems of the Western Pacific (1998-2004); Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Dept. of Plant Sciences, Cambridge University (1995-1997); Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, Panama (1994-1995).
Grants are drawn from ARIES. To add Projects or Grants please contact your College Research Office.
- Environmental Transformations linked to Early Human Occupation in Northern Australia (Primary Investigator)
- Climate change in the abandonment of islands: A high-resolution case study from the tropical Pacific (Secondary Investigator)
- Tracking the response of the Australian climate to abrupt climate change (Secondary Investigator)
- Light islands in a sea of dark rainforest: Human influence on fire, climate and biodiversity in the Australian tropics (Primary Investigator)
- Crossing the Green Sea: maritime mobility, trans-oceanic interaction and remote island colonisation in the tropical Indian Ocean (Secondary Investigator)
- Testing the hypothesis of synchronous inter-hemispheric climatic change during the Last Termination (20,000-10,000 years ago) (Primary Investigator)
- The Australasian Pollen and Spore Atlas (Primary Investigator)
- ARC Research Network for Earth System Science (Secondary Investigator)
- Bush Fire Smoke and the Relationship Between Human and Landscape Health (Primary Investigator)
- Stepping-Stones or Barrier: The Movement and Impact of People throughout the Far Eastern Pacific (Primary Investigator)
- Sustainable Futures through Understanding Past Human Responses to Environmental Change (Primary Investigator)
- The History of El Nino: Decoupling Natural and Human Induced Disturbance Events in the Fossil Record (Primary Investigator)