Project Team

Project Leadership

Project leader: Dr Hazel Parry is a Senior Research Scientist at CSIRO A&F, with over 14 years of R&D experience in agricultural pest management and biosecurity. Hazel has extensive experience in participating in, and for the past six years in leading, complex multi-agency and multi-disciplinary projects.

Project Sponsor: Dr Sharon Downes is the Group Leader of the Biotic Interactions group in the Systems Program of CSIRO A&F. She has managed projects across Australia that involved extensive customer engagements including with industry stakeholders. Sharon is the ‘project sponsor’ for Pest READI which includes oversight of the national steering committee

CSIRO Team Members:

Dr Zelalem Moti is an A&F Research Scientist in agricultural innovation. Zelalem’s role in Pest READI is innovation broker, driving stakeholder engagement, including indigenous communities, to establish a community of practice to foster innovation.

Dr Tracey Steinrucken is a Plant Disease Research Scientist with Health & Biosecurity. Within Pest READI, Tracey fulfills the role of innovation facilitator, responsible for coordinating discussions with stakeholders in the Northern Rivers.

Dr Gillian Cornish is an Environment Postdoctoral Fellow in the Knowledge Commons Project in the Valuing Sustainability FSP. Gillian is using the PestREADI project as a case study for her research, which is about knowledge exchange in agrifood transitions.

Dr Simon Fielke is an experienced social researcher from Environment working on agricultural innovation, rural social research and technological change. He has led projects across Australia and New Zealand and complied with ethical protocols of various institutions – CSIRO included. Simon is co-lead of the Knowledge Commons Project in the Valuing Sustainability FSP.

Dr Barton Loechel is a social researcher in Environment with broad experience investigating a range of rural and regional topics, including integrated pest management, pathogens, biotechnology and agricultural innovation systems.

Dr Zakeel Cassim is a Research Scientist with A&F specializing in developing integrated disease management strategies to control plant diseases by providing valuable insights into sustainable IPM.

Dr Abex Geffersa is a CERC Fellow in Agricultural Economics in the Biotic Interactions group in A&F. Abex’s research has included innovation adoption and impacts in agriculture by improving farmer welfare/well-being through improved agricultural technology.

Dr Sandeep Dhakal is a CERC Fellow with the Agroecology team in A&F, with a background in computer science and computational social modelling. Sandeep is a member of the Pest READI team tasked with developing a range of digital tools.

Anna Marcora is a Research Technician with the Agroecology Team in A&F. Anna’s research predominately involves invertebrate communities in farming systems.

Andrew Hulthen is a Senior Research Technician in the Agroecology Team in A&F. Andy’s research interests lie in electronic data collection, spatial data analysis, and building interactive data analysis and visualisation dashboards.

Jagun Alliance Representatives

Oliver Costello is Bundjalung man from the northern rivers of NSW, with a diverse range of personal and professional expertise in culturally connected stewardship of Country. Oliver is currently focused on First Nations knowledge and practice in caring for Country through regenerative cultural practices that support preparedness, recovery and resilience.

Macquarie University Team Members:

Nicholas Harrigan

Hangyoung Lee

Andrew McGregor


Saleh Adnan

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