Linda Blackall : scientific advisor
PROFESSOR LINDA BLACKALL is a professor in microbial ecology who works at Swinburne University. Her main research interests are using microbes to promote environmental sustainability, understanding symbiotic associations (e.g. corals and their associated microbes), and generally studying microbes wherever they exist – which is everywhere! Her career began prior to the boom in technology/method development that has allowed us to comprehend the omnipresent profound role that microbes play on Earth.
She has previously worked at James Cook University and the Australian Institute of Marine Science in Townsville, and for the Environmental Biotechnology CRC and the Advanced Water Management Centre, while based for over 20 years at the University of Queensland.
Having been involved in the tertiary education sector since 1992, she has taught science, medicine, and engineering to students. She is passionate about trying to broaden the interests of these cohorts beyond their specific cognate disciplines so that they can be expansively engaged in the community and not confined to their 'ivory towers'. This does happen on some but not enough occasions. She would like to kindle the curious minds of the youngest learners so that some of them will embrace this notion...they will be shaping and driving policy soon enough.