Associate Professor Zhong-Hua Chen is Associate Dean International at School of Science and Health, Western Sydney University. He has 15 years of expertise in crop physiology, plant biotechnology and electrophysiology. He leads Bachelor of Sustainable Agriculture & Food Security course and he also teaches Natural Science and Science programs. He is currently co-supervising nine PhD students. His research work shows high quality and impact in agriculture and plant science. He has over 70 publications with an h-index of 27 and over 3,000 citations. He has obtained a few large research grants in the past five years. He has received a range of research awards including the 2014 ARC Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA), the 2013 Australian Government Minister’s Award, and the 2013 Science and Innovation Awards to Young People in Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry. He is the Editor in Chief for Plant Growth Regulation and a reviewer for over 50 journals.

Dr Sara Beavis is a Senior Lecturer at the Fenner School of Environment and Society at the Australian National University where she convenes and teaches courses in water science, water management and island sustainability at undergraduate and graduate levels. She has published extensively on the impacts of natural and anthropogenic processes on water quality and water security, and water management. Current research includes: the transport and fluxes of heavy metals associated with artisanal mining in eastern Indonesia; the implications of climate variability and change on water and sediment quality in inland and coastal aquatic environments; and, examining the ethical dimensions of water resources management in the Pacific and Pacific Rim region.

Professor Paul Taylor is a professor of Plant Pathology with 23 years of research, teaching, and leadership experience at the University of Melbourne, with 14 years experience specifically in Plant Pathology and Biotechnology research with the Australian sugar industry.  Prof Taylor leads a world-class research team in fungal plant pathology of agricultural and horticultural crops which has achieved distinction in advancing research in the areas of:

  • Plant Soil Health – Identification of fungal pathogens associated with yield decline of cropping systems
  • Biosecurity – Mitigating risk of incursion of exotic fungal plant pathogens; development of qPCR diagnostic tools
  • Fungal Pathogen Genomics – Genome sequencing, taxonomy, identification of pathogenicity factors
  • Abiotic Stress tolerances – Genetic transformation of Brassica for cold tolerance

Prof Taylor has more than 130 peer-reviewed research papers in ISI journals with a H index of 37, and 21 Book chapters. He has conducted internationally recognised research in Colletotrichum pathology and is a member of the International Sub commission on Colletotrichum Taxonomy. Prof Taylir has successfully supervised to completion 9 Master and 34 PhD students (5 Master and 23 as Principal) at the University of Melbourne and currently involved in supervision of another 5 PhD (as Principal).