Dr Penny Wurm

Dr Penny Wurm
Dr Penny Wurm's picture
Senior Lecturer and Research Fellow
Primary research group: 
Environmental Science Learning and Teaching
PhD, Charles Darwin University. 1998. BSc (Hons I), Murdoch University. 1987. BSc, Murdoch University. Completed December 1979 BSc University of the South Pacific, Fiji. Commenced 1976.
+61 8 8946 6355


Penny is an ecologist with research interests in the ecology and management of monsoonal wetlands and invasive plant species, and a teaching practice in environmental science. Her PhD research into the population ecology of native rice has led to projects investigating exotic grass invasion of floodplains and the potential of wild rice as a wild harvest “bush tucker” product in collaboration with Indigenous land owners.


Teaching partnerships with Indonesian universities - Universitas Kristen Wacana, Univesitas Nusa Cendana and Universitas Gadjah Mada – have led to an emerging research practice in rural development in eastern Indonesia.  Supervisory, academic and consultancy activity also underpin an emerging practice in Timor Leste. Penny was part of the team which completed a report on integrated water management in irrigation development eastern Indonesia, funded by the Australian Government through the AIIRA/IndII program (Myers et al. 2015). Penny has been a lead member  of the Eastern Indonesian Field Intensive program, run by this consortium of universities, which has to date provided training and capacity building for some 70 senior coursework students and junior staff and some 10 academic  staff from Indonesia and Australian, for rural development research in eastern Indonesia.

In January 2016, Penny completed a 3 year appointment as Associate Head of School - Learning & Teaching, School of Environment. She formerly served as Higher Education Project Leader for the Tropical Savannas CRC, and has taught in the VET sector.


    • National Carrick Institute Citation (2006) for An engaging, flexible postgraduate program, focusing on tropical Australia and building skills and understandings for regional Professionals in authentic learning contexts.  ($10,000) .  In collaboration with Dr Keith Mc Guinness, Dr Lindsay Hutley, Dr Diane Pearson and Dr Samantha Setterfield (CDU).
    • National Australian Society for Computers in Tertiary Education (ASCILITE) Award (2005).  Fire Ecology & Management in Northern Australia teaching and learning materials won one of the 2005 National ASCILITE Awards for Educational Design & Technology in Tertiary Education, for “Exemplary use of electronic technologies in teaching and learning in higher education”.  In collaboration with Dr Lesley Instone (CDU), Helen Rysavy (CDU) and Dr Kate Parr (CSIRO/Bushfire CRC).


Course co-ordination:

Unit coordination:

Other academic administrative service: