Dr Clare Hawkins
Honorary Research Associate - Natural Sciences,
Univeristy of Tasmania
"I think science shouldn't drive people apart but bring people together. It is important to help improve people’s understanding in the scientific method so that perhaps there will be more trust in it and less politics."
Clare developed an interest in carnivorous animal ecology and conservation, studying the fossa in Madagascar for her PhD. The ecologically similar spotted-tailed quoll lured her to Tasmania in 2001; subsequently, she joined the State Government, first investigating the impact and distribution of Devil Facial Tumour Disease. After nine years as Senior Zoologist for the government's Threatened Species Section, Clare took on a Churchill Fellowship, exploring how to involve citizen scientists in long-term wildlife population monitoring. Clare now coordinates the NatureTrackers program for the Bookend Trust, doing exactly this.