Dr Megan Evans

Dr Megan Evans

Senior Lecturer
  • Doctor of Philosophy, Australian National University
  • Bachelor of Science with Honours Class 1, The University of Queensland
  • Bachelor of Arts (Mathematics – Extended Major), The University of Queensland
  • Bachelor of Science (Ecology), The University of Queensland
UNSW Canberra
School of Business

I am a Senior Lecturer in Public Sector Management within the School of Business, UNSW Canberra. I am an interdisciplinary social scientist whose work aims to inform the design, implementation and evaluation of environmental laws, policies and tools.

My research has contributed significantly to environmental policy in Australia and internationally: key examples include work on forest regeneration carbon offset integrity that triggered the Independent Review of Australian Carbon Credit Units (Chubb review), the development of the Australian government’s biodiversity offset policy under federal environmental laws, and work on the economics of land-based carbon offsets that informed the establishment of the $500 million Land Restoration Fund in Queensland. I was a member of Professor Graeme Samuel AC’s Consultative Group as part of the Independent Review of the EPBC Act in 2020, and have engaged extensively with the federal government’s Nature Positive law reform process.  

I recently completed an Australian Research Council DECRA Fellowship (2020-2023) which examined the growth of private sector investment in biodiversity and natural capital, and currently supervise five PhD students researching various aspects of environmental policy and governance.  I hold undergraduate degrees in mathematics and ecology (UQ), a PhD in environmental policy (ANU), and is a member of the editorial board of the journal Conservation Letters

Recent media and comment

  • 'Australia’s long-sought stronger environmental laws just got indefinitely deferred. It’s back to business as usual. The Conversation. April 2024. 
  • 'Pretending to grow forests in the desert': New research questions integrity in safeguard mechanism scheme. ABC News, March 2024
  • “It makes climate change worse:” Carbon credit projects claiming to regrow forests are failing. RenewEconomy. March 2024
  • Labor plan for nature repair market rehashes old proposal and risks failure, experts say. The Guardian. February 2023. 
  • What are biodiversity credits and how do they work? ABC News. January 2023.
  • ‘Abysmal’ number of Australian banks and super funds have policies to mitigate environmental risks: report. The Guardian. December 2022. 
  • Biodiversity market has huge potential for rorting and greenwashing, expert. Canberra Times. October 2022. 
+61 2 5114 5001
Building 27, Room 306, School of Business, UNSW Canberra
  • Book Chapters | 2020
    Evans M, 2020, 'Effective engagement of conservation scientists with decision-makers', in Sutherland WJ; Brotherton PNM; Davies ZG; Ockendon N; Pettorelli N; Vickery JA (ed.), Conservation Research, Policy and Practice, Cambridge University Press, pp. 162 - 182, http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/9781108638210.010
  • Journal articles | 2024
    Macintosh A; Butler D; Larraondo P; Evans MC; Ansell D; Waschka M; Fensham R; Eldridge D; Lindenmayer D; Gibbons P; Summerfield P, 2024, 'Australian human-induced native forest regeneration carbon offset projects have limited impact on changes in woody vegetation cover and carbon removals', Communications Earth and Environment, 5, http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s43247-024-01313-x
    Journal articles | 2024
    Maron M; Quétier F; Sarmiento M; ten Kate K; Evans MC; Bull JW; Jones JPG; zu Ermgassen SOSE; Milner-Gulland EJ; Brownlie S; Treweek J; von Hase A, 2024, '‘Nature positive’ must incorporate, not undermine, the mitigation hierarchy', Nature Ecology and Evolution, 8, pp. 14 - 17, http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41559-023-02199-2
    Journal articles | 2023
    Evans MC, 2023, 'Backloading to extinction: Coping with values conflict in the administration of Australia's federal biodiversity offset policy', Australian Journal of Public Administration, 82, pp. 228 - 247, http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/1467-8500.12581
    Journal articles | 2023
    Leseberg NP; Kutt A; Evans MC; Nou T; Spillias S; Stone Z; Walsh JC; Murphy SA; Bamford M; Burbidge AH; Crossing K; Davis RA; Garnett ST; Kavanagh RP; Murphy R; Read J; Reid J; van Leeuwen S; Watson AWT; Watson JEM; Maron M, 2023, 'Establishing effective conservation management strategies for a poorly known endangered species: a case study using Australia’s Night Parrot (Pezoporus occidentalis)', Biodiversity and Conservation, 32, pp. 2869 - 2891, http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10531-023-02633-8
    Journal articles | 2023
    Taher TB; Althaus CE; Tranter PJ; Evans MC, 2023, 'Impacts of shrimp aquaculture on the local communities and conservation of the world's largest protected mangrove forest', Environmental Science and Policy, 147, pp. 351 - 360, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envsci.2023.07.002
    Journal articles | 2022
    Jassim D; Witt B; Evans MC, 2022, 'Community perceptions of carbon farming: A case study of the semi-arid Mulga Lands in Queensland, Australia', Journal of Rural Studies, 96, pp. 78 - 88, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jrurstud.2022.10.010
    Journal articles | 2022
    Kujala H; Maron M; Kennedy CM; Evans MC; Bull JW; Wintle BA; Iftekhar SM; Selwood KE; Beissner K; Osborn D; Gordon A, 2022, 'Credible biodiversity offsetting needs public national registers to confirm no net loss', One Earth, 5, pp. 650 - 662, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.oneear.2022.05.011
    Journal articles | 2022
    Narain D; Bull JW; Alikhanova S; Evans MC; Markham R; Maron M, 2022, 'A step change needed to secure a nature-positive future—Is it in reach?', One Earth, 5, pp. 589 - 592, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.oneear.2022.05.016
    Journal articles | 2021
    Evans MC, 2021, 'Re-conceptualizing the role(s) of science in biodiversity conservation', Environmental Conservation, 48, pp. 151 - 160, http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0376892921000114
    Journal articles | 2021
    Lucas P; Evans MC; Lockie S; Moon K, 2021, 'Environmental “nonuse rights” warrant caution', Science, 374, pp. 832, http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/science.abm4324
    Journal articles | 2021
    Maseyk FJF; Maron M; Gordon A; Bull JW; Evans MC, 2021, 'Improving averted loss estimates for better biodiversity outcomes from offset exchanges', ORYX, 55, pp. 393 - 403, http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0030605319000528
    Journal articles | 2021
    Wyborn C; Evans MC, 2021, 'Conservation needs to break free from global priority mapping', Nature Ecology and Evolution, 5, pp. 1322 - 1324, http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41559-021-01540-x
    Journal articles | 2020
    Mayfield HJ; Brazill-Boast J; Gorrod E; Evans MC; Auld T; Rhodes JR; Maron M, 2020, 'Estimating species response to management using an integrated process: A case study from New South Wales, Australia', Conservation Science and Practice, 2, http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/csp2.269
    Journal articles | 2019
    Moon K; Blackman DA; Adams VM; Colvin RM; Davila F; Evans MC; Januchowski-Hartley SR; Bennett NJ; Dickinson H; Sandbrook C; Sherren K; St. John FAV; van Kerkhoff L; Wyborn C, 2019, 'Expanding the role of social science in conservation through an engagement with philosophy, methodology, and methods', Methods in Ecology and Evolution, 10, pp. 294 - 302, http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/2041-210X.13126
    Journal articles | 2018
    Evans MC; Cvitanovic C, 2018, 'An introduction to achieving policy impact for early career researchers', Palgrave Communications, 4, http://dx.doi.org/10.1057/s41599-018-0144-2
    Journal articles | 2018
    Evans MC, 2018, 'Effective incentives for reforestation: lessons from Australia's carbon farming policies', Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, 32, pp. 38 - 45, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cosust.2018.04.002
    Journal articles | 2018
    Evans MC, 2018, '` Economics and Environmental Change: The Challenges We Face', AUSTRALIAN JOURNAL OF AGRICULTURAL AND RESOURCE ECONOMICS, 62, pp. 713 - 715, http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/1467-8489.12281
    Journal articles | 2018
    Maron M; Brownlie S; Bull JW; Evans MC; Von Hase A; Quétier F; Watson JEM; Gordon A, 2018, 'The many meanings of no net loss in environmental policy', Nature Sustainability, 1, pp. 19 - 27, http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41893-017-0007-7
    Journal articles | 2018
    Reed SE; Thomas SL; Bednarek AT; DellaSala DA; Evans MC; Lundquist C; Mascia MB; McPherson TY; Watson JEM, 2018, 'Roles for scientific societies to engage with conservation policy', Conservation Biology, 32, pp. 513 - 515, http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/cobi.13092
    Journal articles | 2017
    Evans MC; Davila F; Toomey A; Wyborn C, 2017, 'Embrace complexity to improve conservation decision making', Nature Ecology and Evolution, 1, pp. 1588, http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41559-017-0345-x
    Journal articles | 2017
    Lindenmayer DB; Crane M; Evans MC; Maron M; Gibbons P; Bekessy S; Blanchard W, 2017, 'The anatomy of a failed offset', Biological Conservation, 210, pp. 286 - 292, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biocon.2017.04.022
    Journal articles | 2017
    Reside AE; Beher J; Cosgrove AJ; Evans MC; Seabrook L; Silcock JL; Wenger AS; Maron M, 2017, 'Ecological consequences of land clearing and policy reform in Queensland', Pacific Conservation Biology, 23, pp. 219 - 230, http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/PC17001
    Journal articles | 2016
    Evans MC; Tulloch AIT; Law EA; Raiter KG; Possingham HP; Wilson KA, 2016, 'Better planning outcomes requires clear consideration of costs, condition and conservation benefits, and access to the best available data: Reply to Gosper et al., 2016', Biological Conservation, 200, pp. 242 - 243, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biocon.2016.06.009
    Journal articles | 2016
    Evans MC, 2016, 'Deforestation in Australia: Drivers, trends and policy responses', Pacific Conservation Biology, 22, pp. 130 - 150, http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/PC15052
    Journal articles | 2016
    Gibbons P; Evans MC; Maron M; Gordon A; Le Roux D; von Hase A; Lindenmayer DB; Possingham HP, 2016, 'A Loss-Gain Calculator for Biodiversity Offsets and the Circumstances in Which No Net Loss Is Feasible', Conservation Letters, 9, pp. 252 - 259, http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/conl.12206
    Journal articles | 2016
    Maron M; Ives CD; Kujala H; Bull JW; Maseyk FJF; Bekessy S; Gordon A; Watson JEM; Lentini PE; Gibbons P; Possingham HP; Hobbs RJ; Keith DA; Wintle BA; Evans MC, 2016, 'Taming a Wicked Problem: Resolving Controversies in Biodiversity Offsetting', BioScience, 66, pp. 489 - 498, http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/biosci/biw038
    Journal articles | 2016
    Martin N; Evans M; Rice J; Lodhia S; Gibbons P, 2016, 'Using offsets to mitigate environmental impacts of major projects: A stakeholder analysis', Journal of Environmental Management, 179, pp. 58 - 65, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2016.04.054
    Journal articles | 2015
    Evans MC; Carwardine J; Fensham RJ; Butler DW; Wilson KA; Possingham HP; Martin TG, 2015, 'Carbon farming via assisted natural regeneration as a cost-effective mechanism for restoring biodiversity in agricultural landscapes', Environmental Science and Policy, 50, pp. 114 - 129, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.envsci.2015.02.003
    Journal articles | 2015
    Evans MC; Tulloch AIT; Law EA; Raiter KG; Possingham HP; Wilson KA, 2015, 'Clear consideration of costs, condition and conservation benefits yields better planning outcomes', Biological Conservation, 191, pp. 716 - 727, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biocon.2015.08.023
    Journal articles | 2015
    Maron M; Bull JW; Evans MC; Gordon A, 2015, 'Locking in loss: Baselines of decline in Australian biodiversity offset policies', Biological Conservation, 192, pp. 504 - 512, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.biocon.2015.05.017
    Journal articles | 2015
    Tulloch VJD; Tulloch AIT; Visconti P; Halpern BS; Watson JEM; Evans MC; Auerbach NA; Barnes M; Beger M; Chadès I; Giakoumi S; McDonald-Madden E; Murray NJ; Ringma J; Possingham HP, 2015, 'Why do We map threats? Linking threat mapping with actions to make better conservation decisions', Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, 13, pp. 91 - 99, http://dx.doi.org/10.1890/140022
    Journal articles | 2014
    Miller KL; Trezise JA; Kraus S; Dripps K; Evans MC; Gibbons P; Possingham HP; Maron M, 2014, 'The development of the Australian environmental offsets policy: From theory to practice', Environmental Conservation, 42, pp. 306 - 314, http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S037689291400040X
    Journal articles | 2014
    Tulloch AIT; Tulloch VJD; Evans MC; Mills M, 2014, 'The Value of Using Feasibility Models in Systematic Conservation Planning to Predict Landholder Management Uptake', Conservation Biology, 28, pp. 1462 - 1473, http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/cobi.12403
    Journal articles | 2011
    Evans M; Possingham H; Wilson K, 2011, 'Extinctions: Conserve not collate', Nature, 474, pp. 284, http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/474284a
    Journal articles | 2011
    Evans MC; Possingham HP; Wilson KA, 2011, 'What to do in the face of multiple threats? Incorporating dependencies within a return on investment framework for conservation', Diversity and Distributions, 17, pp. 437 - 450, http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1472-4642.2011.00747.x
    Journal articles | 2011
    Evans MC; Watson JEM; Fuller RA; Venter O; Bennett SC; Marsack PR; Possingham HP, 2011, 'The spatial distribution of threats to species in Australia', BioScience, 61, pp. 281 - 289, http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/bio.2011.61.4.8
    Journal articles | 2011
    Taylor MFJ; Sattler PS; Evans M; Fuller RA; Watson JEM; Possingham HP, 2011, 'What works for threatened species recovery? An empirical evaluation for Australia', Biodiversity and Conservation, 20, pp. 767 - 777, http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10531-010-9977-8
    Journal articles | 2011
    Wilson KA; Evans MC; di Marco M; Green DC; Boitani L; Possingham HP; Chiozza F; Rondinini C, 2011, 'Prioritizing conservation investments for mammal species globally', Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 366, pp. 2670 - 2680, http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rstb.2011.0108
  • Working Papers | 2022

    Macintosh A; Butler D; Evans M; Larraondo P; Ansell D; Gibbons P, 2022, The ERF’s Human-induced Regeneration (HIR): What the Beare and Chambers Report Really Found and a Critique of its Method, Australian National University, http://dx.doi.org, https://law.anu.edu.au/sites/all/files/what_the_beare_and_chambers_report_really_found_and_a_critique_of_its_method_16_march_2022.pdf

  • Reports | 2023
    Evans MC, 2023, Submission on the Nature Repair Market Exposure Draft Bill
    Reports | 2022
    Evans M; Lewis A, 2022, Modelling pathways to a carbon neutral Queensland beef sector through policy and investment to drive transition from deforestation to reforestation, Canberra, http://dx.doi.org/10.26190/unsworks/28445
    Reports | 2022
    Evans M; Maron M, 2022, Submission on Draft Procedure for environmental offsets metric inputs
    Conference Posters | 2022
    Evans M, 2022, 'Credible biodiversity offsetting needs public national registers to confirm no net loss', presented at National Biodiversity Offsets Conference 2.0, 26 July 2022 - 28 July 2022, http://dx.doi.org/10.26190/unsworks/28451
    Reports | 2022
    Evans M, 2022, Submission to a proposed National Biodiversity Market
    Reports | 2022
    Macintosh A; Butler D; Evans M; Ansell D; Waschka M, 2022, Fixing the Integrity Problems with Australia’s Carbon Market, http://dx.doi.org/10.26190/unsworks/28448
    Reports | 2022
    Macintosh A; Butler D; Evans M; Larraondo P; Ansell D; Waschka M, 2022, Integrity and the ERF’s Human-Induced Regeneration Method: The Additionality Problem Explained, http://dx.doi.org/10.26190/unsworks/28450
    Reports | 2022
    Macintosh A; Butler D; Evans M; Larraondo P; Ansell D; Waschka M, 2022, Integrity and the ERF’s Human-Induced Regeneration Method: The Measurement Problem Explained, http://dx.doi.org/10.26190/unsworks/28449
    Reports | 2022
    Macintosh A; Butler D; Evans M, 2022, Australian National University (ANU)-University of New South Wales (UNSW) ERF research team submission to the Chubb Review, http://dx.doi.org/10.26190/unsworks/28447, https://consult.dcceew.gov.au/independent-review-of-accu/submission/view/150
    Reports | 2022
    Macintosh A; Larraondo P; Butler D; Ansell D; Waschka M; Evans M, 2022, Trends in forest and sparse woody cover inside ERF HIR project areas relative to those in surrounding areas, http://dx.doi.org/10.26190/unsworks/28446
    Reports | 2022
    Maron M; Evans M; Mayfield H; Dutson G, 2022, Guidance for determining the availability or scarcity of environmental offsets under the EPBC Act 1999
    Reports | 2021
    Evans M; Maseyk F; Davitt G; Maron M, 2021, Typical offsets for threatened species, NESP Threatened Species Recovery Hub, Brisbane, Australia, http://dx.doi.org/10.26190/unsworks/28208, https://www.nespthreatenedspecies.edu.au/publications-and-tools/typical-offsets-for-threatened-species
    Software / Code | 2021
    Evans M, 2021, Analysis of forest extent and change in Australia, OSF, Published: 20 August 2021, Software / Code, https://osf.io/j237a/
    Reports | 2021
    Reports | 2021
    Maron M; Evans M; Nou T; Stone Z; Spillias S; Mayfield H; Walsh J, 2021, Guidance for estimating the benefits and costs of biodiversity offsets using expert elicitation, Brisbane, Australia, Project 5.1 report, https://www.nespthreatenedspecies.edu.au/publications-and-tools/guidance-for-estimating-biodiversity-offset-benefits-and-costs-using-expert-elicitation
    Reports | 2021
    Maron M; Evans M; Walsh J; Leseberg N; Burbidge A; Murphy S; Garnett S; Reid J; Kutt A; Kavanagh R; Davis R; Watson A; Read J; Bamford M; van Leeuwen S; Crossing K; Jackson M; Nou T; Spillias S; Stone Z, 2021, Better offsets for the night parrot, NESP Threatened Species Recovery Hub, Brisbane, Australia, http://dx.doi.org/10.26190/unsworks/28206, https://www.nespthreatenedspecies.edu.au/publications-and-tools/better-offsets-for-the-night-parrot
    Reports | 2021
    Maron M; Evans M; Walsh J; Mayfield H; Nou T; Davies C; Balmford M; Bamford M; Barrett G; Davis R; Dawson R; Groome C; Johnstone R; Kirkby T; Mawson P; Mitchell D; Peck A; Riley K; Roper E; Rycken S; Saunders D; Shephard J; Stevenson S; Warren K, 2021, Better offsets for Western Australia’s black-cockatoos, NESP Threatened Species Recovery Hub, Brisbane, Australia, https://www.nespthreatenedspecies.edu.au/publications-and-tools/better-offsets-for-western-australia-s-black-cockatoos
    Reports | 2021
    Maron M; Evans M; Walsh J; Stone Z; Dunlop J; Ross B; Woinarski J; Bamford M; Radford I; Watson A; Moore H; Hernandez-Santin L; Cremona T; Davis R; Doherty T; Knuckey C; Cancilla D; Tuft K; Jackson M; Nou T; Spillias S; Davies C; Crossing K; Indigo N, 2021, Better offsets for the northern quoll, NESP Threatened Species Recovery Hub, Brisbane, Australia, http://dx.doi.org/10.26190/unsworks/28209, https://www.nespthreatenedspecies.edu.au/publications-and-tools/better-offsets-for-the-northern-quoll
    Reports | 2021
    Nou T; Maron M; Evans M; Walsh J; Benshemesh J; Southwell D; Kington L; Bamford M; Bastow B; Jackson J; McWhinney K; Bannerman M; Copley P; Parsons B; Wheeler R, 2021, Lessons from using expert elicitation where scientific uncertainty is high: the case of the malleefowl, NESP Threatened Species Recovery Hub, Brisbane, Australia, http://dx.doi.org/10.26190/unsworks/28207, https://www.nespthreatenedspecies.edu.au/publications-and-tools/lessons-from-using-expert-elicitation-where-scientific-uncertainty-is-high-the-case-of-the-malleefowl
    Reports | 2019
    Mayfield H; Rhodes J; Evans M; Maron M, 2019, Guidelines for estimating and evaluating species’ response to management, Department of Planning, Industry and Environment, Sydney, Australia
    Reports | 2018
    Evans M; Maron M, 2018, Estimating the benefits of offsetting: Expert elicitation, NESP Threatened Species Recovery Hub, Brisbane, Australia, http://dx.doi.org/10.26190/unsworks/28211, https://www.nespthreatenedspecies.edu.au/publications-and-tools/estimating-the-benefits-of-offsetting-expert-elicitation
    Reports | 2018
    Maseyk F; Evans M; Maron M, 2018, How much benefit do we get from ‘protection’? Guidance for biodiversity offsetting, NESP Threatened Species Recovery Hub, Brisbane, Australia, http://dx.doi.org/10.26190/unsworks/28212, https://www.nespthreatenedspecies.edu.au/publications-and-tools/how-much-benefit-do-we-get-from-protection-guidance-for-biodiversity-offsetting
    Reports | 2017
    Evans M; Maron M; Maseyk F, 2017, Guidance for deriving ‘Risk of Loss’ estimates when evaluating biodiversity offset proposals under the EPBC Act, NESP Threatened Species Recovery Hub, Brisbane, Australia, http://dx.doi.org/10.26190/unsworks/28210, https://www.nespthreatenedspecies.edu.au/publications-and-tools/guidance-for-deriving-risk-of-loss-estimates-when-evaluating-biodiversity-offset-proposals-under-the-epbc-act
    Theses / Dissertations | 2017
    Evans M, 2017, Public policy for biodiversity conservation: evaluating outcomes, opportunities and risks

  • 2022: $32,160. Environmental offset scarcity under the EPBC Act. Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment (Investigators: Maron, M, Evans M.C., Dutson, G.).
  • 2021: $39,800. Interrogating cross-sectoral narratives around the role of private sector finance and investment. School of Business, UNSW Canberra (Investigators: Evans, M.C., Bazbauers, A., Chand, S., Rooney J.)
  • 2021: $5,000. Review of Environmental Offsets Policy Guidance. Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment. (Investigator: Evans, M.C)
  • 2020: $41,600. WWF-Australia. Modelling pathways to a carbon neutral Queensland beef sector through policy and investment to drive transition from deforestation to reforestation. 

  • 2020-2022: $379,729. Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Research Award (DECRA) The Effectiveness of Impact Investing for Biodiversity Conservation

  • 2017–2018: $95,786. Project funded by New South Wales Office of Environment and Heritage to develop response to management models for priority species (Investigators: Maron, M, Evans M.C., Rhodes J).

  • 2017: $3,000. Awarded a Visiting Fellowship (RMIT University) by the ARC Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions (CEED).

  • 2015: $7,000. Funding for a workshop on the legal and institutional dimensions of biodiversity offsetting by the ARC Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions (CEED). 

  • 2013 – 2016: $87,500. Won a prestigious Australian National University Australian Postgraduate Award.

  • 2013 – 2016: $49,500. Won a highly competitive CSIRO Climate Adaptation Flagship Top-up Scholarship.

  • 2021: Awarded the Young Tall Poppy Award for the Australian Capital Territory by the Australian Institute of Policy and Science

  • 2018: Winner of the University of Queensland Faculty of Science Rising Star (Academic) Award (selected from 29 nominations and 349 eligible academics).

  • 2014: Awarded competitive scholarship by the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions (CEED) to participate in a year-long leadership program for 14 early career researchers, which included media, facilitation and leadership training, and individual and group projects.

  • 2014: Awarded a prestigious Wentworth Group of Concerned Scientists Science Program Scholarship.


  • Environmental markets, policy and governance
  • Sustainable and conservation finance
  • Public policy
  • Carbon offsets
  • Science-policy interface
  • Interdisciplinary research

Research Impacts

Recent submissions

  • Submission to the Senate Inquiry into Australia’s extinction crisis. pdf

  • Submission to the Senate Inquiry into Offshore Petroleum and Greenhouse Gas Storage Legislation Amendment (Safety and Other Measures) Bill 2024 [Provisions] pdf

  • Submission to the Nature Repair Market Bill. pdf

  • ANU-UNSW research team submission to the Chubb Review. Link

  • Submission to a proposed National Biodiversity Market. pdf

  • Response to Question on Notice in the Senate Environment and Communications Legislation Committee Inquiry into the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Amendment (Standards and Assurance) Bill 2021 (“the Bill”) pdf

  • Submission to the Senate Environment and Communications Legislation Committee Inquiry into the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Amendment (Standards and Assurance) Bill 2021 pdf
  • Submission to the Interim Report of the Independent Review of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act). pdf
  • Submission to the Independent Review of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act. pdf

Webinars and videos

  • Federal Govt proposes certificate scheme to promote biodiversity. ABC News.

  • What are biodiversity credits and how do they work? ABC News. 

  • Honest Government Ad | Carbon Credits & Offsets. YouTube

  • Webinar on The NSW State of the Environment Report with Minister James Griffin MP. 21st March 2022. Coalition for Conservation. YouTube.
  • Closing the biodiversity finance gap with private investment: how is it working on the ground? 61st Annual Ecological Society of Australia conference. Online, 22-26 November 2021. Video.
  • Innovative approaches to mobilize finance for conservation: how does it work on the ground? The IORA Indian Ocean Blue Carbon Hub. Webinar, 6th October 2021. YouTube.

Media and comment


  • Federal Govt proposes certificate scheme to promote biodiversity. ABC News. March 2023. 
  • Australia introduces nature repair market legislation to parliament. Carbon Pulse. March 2023. 
  • ‘Like the subprime mortgage crisis’: Most of Australia’s carbon credits are junk, experts say. Crikey. March 2023. 
  • Losing the natural world comes with major risks for your super fund and bank. The Conversation. February 2023. 
  • Labor plan for nature repair market rehashes old proposal and risks failure, experts say. The Guardian. February 2023. 
  • Losing the natural world comes with major risks for your super fund and bank. The Conversation. February 2023.
  • Traded biodiversity 'credits' are key to Labor's environmental plans, but critics are not convinced. ABC News. January 2023.
  • What are biodiversity credits and how do they work? ABC News. January 2023.


  • ‘Abysmal’ number of Australian banks and super funds have policies to mitigate environmental risks: report. The Guardian. December 2022. 
  • Why a biodiversity environment market doesn’t work. The Saturday Paper. December 2022. 
  • Forest regeneration that earned multimillion-dollar carbon credits resulted in fewer trees, analysis finds. The Guardian. November 2022.
  • The government hopes private investors will help save nature. Here’s how its scheme could fail. The Conversation. October 2022. 
  • Labor’s plan to save threatened species is an improvement – but it’s still well short of what we need. The Conversation. October 2022. 
  • Biodiversity market has huge potential for rorting and greenwashing, expert. Canberra Times. October 2022. 
  • Catastrophe, pollution, dirty subsidies and nature capitalism: another week in the climate crisis. The Guardian. September 2022. 
  • Albanese outlines plan for nature restoration market prompting calls for more urgent action. The Guardian. August 2022. 
  • Albanese parrots a pro-coal talking point as Ampol offers ‘carbon neutral’ petrol. The Guardian. July 2022.
  • We blew the whistle on Australia’s central climate policy. Here’s what a new federal government probe must fix. The Conversation. June 2022. 
  • Story on the previous government’s decision to scrap recovery plans. Triple J Hack. June 2022 (from 13:03).
  • Soaring demand for trees exposes carbon credits ‘minefield’ in fight to offset Australia’s emissions. ABC News. June 2022.
  • How to make space for species. Axios. June 2022.
  • More than 40 per cent of Earth’s land surface ‘must be conserved to maintain biodiversity’. ABC News. June 2022.
  • Native species are in crisis, but you wouldn’t know it from the election campaign. The Age. May 2022.
  • Can you really carbon offset a power station? Sure – but it’s unimpressive. The Guardian. February 2022. 
  • Australian government ‘aggravating extinction’ through land-clearing approvals, analysis finds. The Guardian. March 2022. 


  • Country, culture and nature-based solutions key to reducing emissions. UNSW Canberra. November 2021. 
  • Parks credits bill will underpin fossil fuel expansion, biodiversity expert warns. Footprint News. November 2021. 
  • Hopes and doubts for public sector transferring skills into post-COVID world. The Mandarin. November 2021.
  • Millions of junk credits issued for Australian forests that already exist. Radio National Breakfast. November 2021. 
  • Carbon offsetting: does it actually work? The Age. November 2021
  • Climate-contrary Nationals, strawman arguments and rewriting Australia’s Kyoto history. The Guardian. October 2021
  • Compensation revelations. ABC News. September 2021
  • Warragamba Dam’s EIS shows New South Wales government’s efforts to avoid compensation. ABC News. September 2021
  • Destroying vegetation along fences and roads could worsen our extinction crisis — yet the NSW government just allowed it. The Conversation. September 2021
  • Coal companies allowed to delay environmental offsets on NSW mines for up to 10 years. The Guardian. September 2021
  • Taking care of business: the private sector is waking up to nature’s value. The Conversation. February 2021.
  • It’s not too late to save them: 5 ways to improve the government’s plan to protect threatened wildlife. The Conversation.


  • Navigating Uncertainty - S01E12 - Why Biodiversity Loss Is A Growing Risk For Business. UNSW Canberra Podcasts. Spotify Podcasts. SoundCloud. December 2020.
  • Brisbane 'throws ratepayer money overseas' to be carbon neutral’: Councillor. Brisbane Times. 26th November 2020.
  • Why ignoring biodiversity loss is an increasingly risky business. The Canberra Times. September 2020.
  • 'We are relying on a pinky promise’: The problem with the Government moving its environmental powers to states. ABC News. 13th September 2020.
  • Ask an Expert: What is the EPBC Act? UNSW Ask An Expert. 4th September 2020.
  • New environment law framework could give States too much power. 2SER 107.3. 2nd September 2020
  • Environmental changes should not be rushed to become law: experts. The Wire community radio. 24th July 2020.
  • The magic of the market won’t help the environment unless government also takes responsibility. The Guardian. July 2020.
  • National cabinet just agreed to big changes to environment law. Here’s why the process shouldn’t be rushed. The Conversation. July 2020.
  • Morrison government urged to fix flawed environmental offsets leaving threatened species at risk. The Guardian. 27th June 2020.
  • Scientists fear Coalition’s push to deregulate environmental approvals will lead to extinction crisis. The Guardian. 16th June 2020.
  • Overestimating rate of biodiversity loss can have unexpected consequences. UNSW Canberra. May 2020



  • Help to shape policy with your science. Nature 560: 671. August 2018.
  • Four personality traits ECRs can foster to help impact policy and practice. Research to Action. August 2018.
  • Early Career Researchers: So You Want To Make A Difference? Particle. August 2018.
  • So you want to make an impact? Some practical suggestions for early-career researchers. London School of Economics Impact Blog. July 2018.
  • Land-clearing wipes out $1bn taxpayer-funded emissions gains. The Guardian. 29th May 2018.


  • Land clearing rates in Queensland on par with Brazil, new study finds. ABC News. June 2017.
  • Australia’s species need an independent champion. The Conversation, October 2017.
  • The plan to protect wildlife displaced by the Hume Highway has failed. The Conversation, May 2017.
  • Land clearing on the rise as legal ‘thinning’ proves far from clear-cut. The Conversation, June 2017.
  • Hume Highway duplication project failed to protect threatened species, ANU study finds. ABC News. May 2017.

2016 and earlier

  • Queensland farmers protest proposed changes to tree clearing laws. Interview on Radio National. August 2016.
  • Australia needs better policy to end the alarming increase in land clearing. The Conversation, August 2016. 
  • Queensland moves to control land clearing: other states need to follow. The Conversation, May 2016.
  • Assisted regeneration could make farmers money. ANU News. 17th March 2015.
  • Can we offset biodiversity losses? Brisbane Times and SBS News Australia. May 2013.
  • Can we offset biodiversity losses? The Conversation, May 2013.
  • Australia’s biodiversity under increasing threat from multiple fronts. UQ News. April 2011.
  • No refuge: When a ‘protected area’ is not really protected. The Conversation, September 2011.
  • Australia set for tidal wave of wildlife extinction: WWF. WWF-Australia. November 2008

My Research Supervision

  • The social construction of property rights across governance scales and the implications for biodiversity conservation in Australia

  • Making businesses work for biodiversity: Decision-support tools for integrating biodiversity conservation into the finance sector

  • Governance arrangements, use and availability of economic and financial information for decision making on ecosystems investments

  • An integrated basin-scale blue-green algae strategy for the 21st century. 

  • Nature finance

Completed supervision

  • Dr Toiaba Binta Taher (Doctor of Philosophy), Primary supervisor (with Professor Catherine Althaus). Thesis title: Practices of participatory conservation: an ethnographic investigation in the Sundarbans of Bangladesh

My Teaching