What I’m doing now

Last updated: July 2022

I am working part time in a teaching specialist role at the School of Geography Earth and Atmospheric Sciences (SGEAS)/School of Biosciences at the University of Melbourne.

When I’m not teaching, I’m doing a bit of research (with wonderful colleagues and students).

When I’m not doing that, I’m attempting to keep up with a toddler, or a dog.

I’ll be going on another round of maternity leave at the end of September 2022 🤰🏻

Teaching

In semester 1 I teach Extreme Weather and Climate in dual delivery mode, meaning students can either be in the classroom or online. This past semester we brought in some fun practicals, including a DIYnamics activity using LEGO-powered rotating tanks!

In semester 2 I teach with the wonderful Unimelbscicomm team, helping over 100 research students communicate their work more clearly with each other and the world.

Research

A lot of projects on the go:

  • I am loving being part of the ARC Special Research Initiative Linkage project Parched with colleagues from La Trobe University, looking at how historical and recent droughts cultures differ across Victoria. We recently submitted an article looking at how the Federation Drought was reported in the Bendigo media, and how many of the tropes used back then are still being used today.
  • In late 2021, I published an article with colleagues from the Bureau of Meteorology about the longest series of parallel temperature observations in the world. Here’s a summary.
  • I’m also helping the University of Newcastle’s Historical Weather Data Sets project, who are looking for more historical weather records in the New England/New South Wales region
  • I am continuing to collaborate with colleagues from the Bureau of Meteorology on the comparison of parallel observations in Adelaide, and some great colleagues from McGill University in Canada on an interdisciplinary paper about how we can trust historical weather observations rescued via citizen science projects.
  • The wonderful Kate Bongiovanni completed her Masters in late 2021, looking at the influence of the 1883 Krakatoa eruption on Australia’s weather and climate. She is now preparing this work for publication
  • I’ve just started co-supervising another Masters student, Jarrad Rowe, who is exploring historical heatwave events in Perth. His work will build on our recent paper describing newly recovered observations in WA back to 1830.

Outreach and communication

The ongoing floods in eastern Australia are leading people to ask lots of questions about the drivers and likelihood of future events, which I’ve been trying to answer occasionally.

In March 2020 I was asked to contribute to Is This How You Feel?, a collection of letters from climate scientists. This is a powerful project from Joe Duggan and a cathartic experience to pen my piece. The letter has been included in a new book by Claire O’Rourke, Together We Can.

I continue to co-host Einstein A Go Go once a month and contribute to the social media presence for the international climate data rescue initiative Atmospheric Circulation Reconstructions over the Earth. I’m also on Instagram now, if you like sporadic updates and bad pictures.

The SGEAS seminar series is up and running and we are always looking for speakers. If you’d like to nominate yourself, or someone else, please get in touch!

I am a current Victorian Tall Poppy, and would love to visit your school if you would like to talk about anything weather and climate related!


This Now page inspired by Derek Sivers‘.

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