Research Associate Professor in evolutionary ecology based at Southern Cross University where she directs of the BI Lab–Biological Intelligence Lab as part of the Diverse Intelligences Initiative of the Templeton World Charity Foundation.
She has pioneered the brand-new research field of plant bioacoustics, for the first time experimentally demonstrating that plants emit their own ‘voices’ and detect and respond to the sounds of their environments. Her work has extended the concept of cognition (including perception, learning processes, memory) in plants. By demonstrating experimentally that learning is not the exclusive province of animals, she has re-ignited the discourse on plant subjectivity and ethical and legal standing. Inspired by encounters with Nature and indigenous elders from around the world, she apply a progressive and holistic approach to science – one that is comfortable engaging at the interface between areas as diverse as ecology, physics, law, anthropology, philosophy, literature, music and the arts, and spirituality. By re-kindling a sense of wonder for this beautiful place we call home, she is helping to create a fresh imaginative ecology of mind that can inspire the emergence of truly innovative solutions to human relations with the world we co-inhabit.
Her latest book is Thus Spoke the Plant (North Atlantic Books, 2018).