By Sarah Hobgen
Sarah lives and works on the remote island of Sumba, Eastern Indonesia. Currently she is writing her PhD thesis on erosion and sedimentation in the Kambaniru Catchment. Sarah's research analyses freely available data and satellite imagery using open source software to develop a sediment budget. This approach can be implemented by local government officers in Indonesia with just a laptop, occasional internet access, and training materials. Radionuclide tracers Cesium-137, Plutonium-239 and Lead-210(excess) are also utilised to evaluate the effectiveness of this approach.
Sarah is passionate about developing capacity of local people to manage their own natural resources sustainably, and has been involved in a number of projects and GIS training workshops in Sumba and West Timor. Prior to starting her PhD research Sarah volunteered with local non-government organisation KOPPESDA in Sumba though the Australian Youth Ambassadors for Development program. Previous work with Landcare groups in the NSW Eastern Riverina and in bushfire management and recovery for the Victorian government provided Sarah with practical field and community engagement skills. Sarah began her studies with a Bachelor degree (Hons) in Environmental Science at Monash University.
Through her years spent in Indonesia, Sarah speaks fluent Indonesian and has translated training materials and facilitated workshops in Indonesian.
Awards & Grants
2013 - ESHE Travel grant Geomorphology Conference, Paris
2011- 2014 - Australian Institute for Nuclear Science and Engineering (AINSE) Postgraduate Award
2011 - Prime Minister's Australia Asia Award
2010 - 2014 - Australian Postgraduate Award 2010 - AINSE Research Award (with Prof. Robert Wasson)