University Staff Directory The University of Adelaide Australia
Faculties & Divisions | People A to Z | Media Expertise | Phonebook
Public browsing [Login]
Text Zoom: S | M | L

Associate Professor Jeremy Austin

Telephone +61 8 8313 4557
Position ARC Future Fellow
Fax +61 8 8313 4364
Mobile +61 4 0419 8493
Building Darling Building
Floor/Room 2 13
Campus North Terrace
Org Unit Genetics & Evolution

To link to this page, please use the following URL:

Biography/ Background

I grew up in Tasmania and completed a Science Degree and PhD at the Unversity of Tasmania. Since then I have worked on ancient DNA projects at the Natural History Museum (London) from 1994-2000, a brief stint with a marine ecology consultancy company undertaking marine park surveys along the Victorian coastline, comparative phylogeography of rainforest vertebrates at the University of Queensland (2000-2003), phylogeography and molecular systematics of Australian owls and lizards at Museum Victoria (2003-2005), taught a one semester third year course in human evolutionary genetics at Latrobe University (2004) and have been based at the University of Adelaide since 2005. My research uses ancient and modern DNA to understand the impacts of human activities over the last 200 years on threatened and endangered species, the impacts of climate change on genetic diversity and demography over the last 50,000 years and the phylogeography of a range of vertebrates.


BSc (Hons), University of Tasmania, 1991

PhD, University of Tasmania, 1995

Teaching Interests


Alex Anderson, Honours Project: Population genetics of grey-headed robins in the Australian Wet Tropics (submitted 2002)

Sarah Bray, PhD Project: Evolution and demography of giant short-faced bears and brown bears (commenced 2005)

Gaynor Dolman, PhD Project: Speciation in Wet Tropics fauna: Carlia skinks (submitted February 2006)

Josh Hale, PhD Project: Human induced changes in the genetic structure of amphibian populations (based at Museum Victoria, commenced 2007)

Conrad Hoskin, PhD Project: Evolution in a secondary contact zone between two lineages of the Green-eyed Tree Frog Litoria genimaculata (submitted May 2006)

Andrew Hugall, PhD Project: Wet Tropics land snail phylogeography (commenced 2006)

Katrina Morris, PhD Project: Genetics of the Tasmanian devil and immunology of the devil facial tumour disease (based at University of Sydney, commenced 2008)

James Nicholls, PhD Project: Call and genetic variation in the satin bowerbird (submitted 2005)

Lindi Olivier, Hons Project: Conservation genetics of Wedge-tailed Eagles (2010)

Nicolas Rawlence, PhD Project: Population demographics of moa in New Zealand during the late Pleistocene and Holocene (commenced 2005)

Michelle Roberts, Hons Project: Morphological and molecular analysis of diet in the arrow squid, Nototodarus gouldi (submitted November 2007)

Katie Smith, PhD Project: Human induced changes in the genetic structure of amphibian populations (based at Museum Victoria, commenced 2007)

Jessica Wadley, Hons Project: Phylogeography and conservation genetics of Wedge-tailed Eagles (submitted November 2009)


Community Engagement

Science Communication to the Wider Community

2009    Public lecture on ancient DNA - Museum Victoria, Melbourne (

            Public lecture on ancient DNA - Research Tuesdays, University of Adelaide (

            Palaeontology Week – public lecture at the South Australian Museum

            Public lecture on ancient DNA - Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery, Launceston

2008    Can You Believe It – popular science article for the Advertiser newspaper

            Maths Science Life Impact – ancient DNA presentation and activity for high school students

2007    Science@Adelaide - ancient DNA presentation to high school students

            Can You Believe It – two popular science articles for the Advertiser newspaper

2006    National Science Week – CSIRO Cutting Edge Science Lecture, University of Adelaide

            CONASTA – National Science Teachers Conference, University of Adelaide

2004    National Science Week, Museum Victoria – public presentation on ancient DNA

2003    National Science Week, Museum Victoria – public presentation on ancient DNA

            Owl Genetics Project  - with Australian Geographic magazine – co-ordinator of this public participation research project, and associated media coverage (TV, news and radio).

            DNA Lab – live laboratory-based public display at Museum Victoria which received

widespread media coverage and won the 2004 Museum Australia – Museum Industry

Recognition Award.


2010      Totally Wild, Channel 10 – Yellow-eyed penguins

2009      Catalyst, ABC TV ( – Ancient DNA           Monsterquest, The History Channel ( – Isle of the Lost Tiger

The Age, Education Section ( – Ancient DNA



ABC TV (, The Advertiser (, Fox News (,2933,446348,00.html), Science Daily ( - Tasmanian Devils

Readers Digest “The Hunt for the Unknown Sailor” Helen O’Neill – HMAS Sydney DNA identification

Stateline, ABC TV ( - HMAS Sydney DNA identification

BBC News (, ABC News ( - Hobbit debate

Reuters (, BBC News (, Sydney Morning Herald (, ABC News ( - Yellow-eyed penguins.


2007            The Bulletin Magazine “The Bone Sailor” Cheryl Jones – HMAS Sydney DNA identification

Entry last updated: Wednesday, 1 Apr 2015

The information in this directory is provided to support the academic, administrative and business activities of the University of Adelaide. To facilitate these activities, entries in the University Phone Directory are not limited to University employees. The use of information provided here for any other purpose, including the sending of unsolicited commercial material via email or any other electronic format, is strictly prohibited. The University reserves the right to recover all costs incurred in the event of breach of this policy.