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Conservation is a noisy business: modelling the effects of stochasticity on wildlife management decisions

To conserve species in disturbed natural environments, we need to use mathematical models to predict the consequences of different interventions. Unfortunately, these models are based on partial information of complex systems, and the systems themselves are subject to substantial observational and process noise.We often use ordinary differential equations to describe ecosystems, like the classic logistic growth model:dn/dt = r n (1 - n / k)However, these models are deterministic, and they assume we know the values of the key parameters …

Study level
Master of Philosophy, Honours, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Science
School
School of Mathematical Sciences
Research centre(s)
Centre for Data Science
Centre for the Environment

Modelling and managing uncertain Antarctic species networks

Antarctic ecosystems are complex, and data is limited since it is expensive to collect. Species interact in food webs which can be modelled as mathematical networks. The relationships between species are not always known, or we might know they interact but not how strongly. Noisy (or imperfect) data can be used to model these species interactions to give more certainty about how the ecosystem works as a whole – although the worse the data is, the less information it contributes. …

Study level
Honours, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Science
School
School of Mathematical Sciences
Research centre(s)
Centre for Data Science
Centre for the Environment

Statistical methods for detecting Antarctic ecosystems from space

Satellite images are a frequent and free source of global data which can be used to effectively monitor the environment. We can see how the land is being used, how it’s being changed, what’s there – even where animals are in the landscape. Using these images is essential, particularly for regions where data is expensive to collect or difficult to physically access, like Antarctica. In Antarctica and the sub-Antarctic islands, satellite images can be an easy and quick way to …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours
Faculty
Faculty of Science
School
School of Mathematical Sciences
Research centre(s)
Centre for Data Science
Centre for the Environment

Using catastrophe theory to prepare for global warming in Antarctica

According to dynamical systems theory, crises occur because couplings within a system (geophysical, ecological and social) create instabilities. Nonlinear feedbacks means that relatively small changes in circumstances can cause a rapid change to the system state. For example, a small increase in tourism visitors could lead to the invasion of a new species. Or, a gradual change in the average global temperature could lead to the collapse of Antarctic ice-shelves.In the coming decade, the Antarctic and sub-Antarctic are likely to …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours
Faculty
Faculty of Science
School
School of Mathematical Sciences
Research centre(s)

Centre for the Environment

Machine learning for wildlife monitoring

This project will investigate methods to monitor wildlife using machine learning applied to aerial imagery.While it is highly desirable to use drones and aerial footage to monitor wildlife, there are substantial challenges created by the nature of the data and target wildlife.This, combined with the vast nature of any collected aerial data, makes manual analysis difficult. This challenge motivates the development of machine learning methods to automatically process data and perform tasks, such as:detecting target animalscounting herd animalsclassifying land useassessing …

Study level
Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Engineering
School
School of Electrical Engineering and Robotics
Research centre(s)
Centre for Data Science

How do households dispose of medication?

It is likely that every household would have some surplus medicines that are no longer required by the person who originally took them. Some countries have schemes for return of medicines for appropriate disposal while others do not. Inappropriate disposal of medicines can lead to environmental pollution or if stored, may lead to incorrect dispensing to other family members or friends.This project aims to review the available literature on disposal of medicines from households. This includes searching for literature on …

Study level
Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Health
School
School of Public Health and Social Work

IT-enabled corporate social responsibility (CSR)

Organizations engage in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) to ensure that a company is socially involved and accountable—to itself, its stakeholders, and the public. The aim of CSR (also referred to as corporate citizenship is to make companies conscious of the impact they are having on multiple dimensions of society (i.e., economic, social, and environmental). Modern technology advancements have clearly proven to enhance information access, efficiency in service provisioning and a multitude of innovations. This project aims to analyze the current …

Study level
Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Science
School
School of Information Systems
Research centre(s)
Centre for Future Enterprise

High performance and economical adsorbents for carbon capture

Capturing excess CO2 from the atmosphere or anthropogenic emissions is key to minimising a warming climate. However, a major barrier to implementing carbon capture is the cost associated with current technologies. Therefore, development of high performance and economical materials to capture excess carbon is of great interest.

Study level
Honours, Vacation research experience scheme
Faculty
Faculty of Engineering
School
School of Mechanical, Medical and Process Engineering

The Law and Policy of Satellite and Large Data in Environmental and Land Use Management

Dr Evan Hamman is looking for PhD/MPhil candidates wanting to explore the relationship between space technologies and large data sets in the mapping, managing and directing of human land use. Candidates interested in exploring the relationships between land use management, data science and environmental law and regulations are particularly encouraged. The focus can be Australia, comparative or public international law. This topic is led by the QUT School of Law within the Datafication and Automation of Human Life research group. …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy, Honours
Faculty
Faculty of Business and Law
School
School of Law

International Environmental Law and Politics

Many environmental issues are globally significant problems and countries have to engage and interact with each other to resolve them despite having different domestic priorities. Current challenges around climate, land degradation, biodiversity loss, and plastics are just some of the issues that are influenced by international standards, agreements and institutions.

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy
Faculty
Faculty of Business and Law
School
School of Law

Feminist Approaches to Environmental Governance

Feminist approaches to environmental guidance consider a whole-of-systems approach and acknowledge that the domination of the environment and oppression of women and other groups in society are interlinked. Dr Katie Woolaston and Dr Rowena Maguire are interested in talking to students who are considering using feminist or alternative theories to analyse environmental governance. Particular areas of interest include wildlife and conservation, methods of collaboration, waste management, and the circular economy.

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy
Faculty
Faculty of Business and Law
School
School of Law

Legal Approaches to Conservation Conflicts and Land-Use Conflicts

Conservation and land-use conflicts arise when people have different needs and interests concerning a protected area or land space. The management of these types of conflicts often has to broach disciplinary divides to ensure that appropriate consideration is given to the many complex and diverse issues that surround them, such as social justice, food production, biodiversity, the history of a place, and the attitudes and values of local stakeholders. The Law School invites students to express an interest in research …

Study level
PhD, Master of Philosophy
Faculty
Faculty of Business and Law
School
School of Law

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