Personal profile


Simon graduated with a BA (Hons) in physcial geography and a PhD in palaeoecology and archaeology from the University of Melbourne in 2007. He subsequently undertook post-doctoral research at the University of the Algarve (Portugal, 2008-2012), was a lecturer in physical geography at Monash University (Australia, 2013-2014) and the University of Melbourne (2015-2016), and invited researcher at the Université Bourgogne Franche-Comté (France, 2018-2019). He joined the ANU in 2019.

Simon's research includes studies of air pollution history in Sydney, interactions between prehistoric cultures and vegetation in the Caucasus region, climatic change in the Balkans, forest disappearance along the Portuguese coastline, fire history in Mediterranean mountains, the creation of cultural landscapes in Tasmania's World Heritage Area, human impacts on island ecosystems, interactions between past fire and biodiversity change on the Iberian Peninsula, and early European impacts on the 'intact' savannas of NW Australia.

Research interests

  • Human-environment interactions in prehistory
  • Biodiversity changes in Mediterranean environments
  • Fire-vegetation dynamics in biodiversity hotspots
  • Impacts of European colonisation on island ecosystems
  • Quantitative reconstruction of past land cover
  • Sustainable development and conservation
Human-environment interactions


BA(Hons), PhD, Grad. Cert. Academic Practice

Education/Academic qualification

Palaeoecology & Archaeology, PhD, Late Quaternary vegetation history of Southern Georgia, the Caucasus, University of Melbourne

Award Date: 11 Aug 2007

Expertise Areas

  • Quaternary Environments
  • Palaeoecology
  • Biogeography and Phylogeography
  • Archaeological Science


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