Public Talks

2018      (with James R. Fleming and Arnout van der Meer), National History Center Roundtable, ‘The Possibilities and Pitfalls of Big History’, American Historical Association Annual Meeting, Washington, DC, January.

2017      ‘Australindia: Placing Australia in the Indian Ocean World’, Scaling Australia Seminar Series, Menzies Centre for Australian Studies, King’s College London, December 13.

2017      ‘An Arid Empire: Water Scarcity in the British Indian Ocean World’, Geography Seminar Series, Queen’s University, Belfast, November.

2017      ‘A Thirsty Empire: Water Scarcity in the British Indian Ocean World’, Global and Imperial History Seminar, Oxford Centre for Global History, University of Oxford, November 17.

2017      ‘“The Engineer is a Ruler of Men”: Masculinity and the Exchange of Engineering Expertise between British India and the Australian Colonies’, Berlin-Brandenburg Colloquium on Environmental History, Humboldt University, Berlin, July 20, convened by Dr Astrid M. Kirchhof and Dr Jan-Henrik Meyer.

2017   ‘Monsoon Empire: Climate and Water in the British Indian Ocean World, 1780 to 1914’, India and the Settler Colonies: Environmental Networks, University of Sussex, convened by Prof. Vinita Damodaran, May 10.

2016      ‘Swamps and the Colonial Hydrology of Nineteenth century Calcutta and Perth’, Melbourne South Asian Studies Group, The University of Melbourne, Nov 11.

2016      ‘Swamps and Indigenous Peoples in the Environmental History of the Swan River Colony’, Quantitative and Applied Ecology Group Seminar Series, The University of Melbourne, Nov 4.

2016      (with Margaret Cook, Andrea Gaynor, Grace Karskens and Gonzalo Villaneueva), ‘Boom and Bust in Environmental History: From Cronon’s Wilderness to the Age of the Anthropocene’, Australian Historical Association Conference, Federation University, Ballarat, 4-8 July.

2016      ‘Engineering an Empire: encounters, ecologies and exchange in the engineering of Australian rivers and landscapes, 1788 to 1901’, Voyages and Visions: a symposium in honour of John Gascoigne and Ian Tyrrell, University of New South Wales, July 2.

2015   (with Libby Robin, Emily O’Gorman and Grace Moore) ‘Australian environmental histories: challenging global orthodoxies’, Australia in the World Seminar Series, University of Melbourne, November 5.

2015   ‘From “dung hill” to “water sensitive city”? Perth’s anxious water history’, New WAter Ways Water Sensitive Cities Speaker Series, WA Dept of Water, Perth, 30 October.

2015   ‘Ghost Busting WA’s Water Histories’, Disrupted Festival of Ideas, State Library of Western Australia, Perth, 6 September.

2015   ‘Australindia: Australia, India, South Africa and the Ecologies of Empire, 1757-1914’, Rachel Carson Center, LMU, Munich, 30 April. 

Conferences

2017      ‘“The Engineer is a Ruler of Men”: Masculinity and the Exchange of Engineering Expertise between British India and the Australian Colonies’, Biennial Conference of the European Society of Environmental History, University of Zagreb, Croatia, 28 June – 2 July.

2017    ‘“The Engineer is a Ruler of Men”: Masculinity and the Exchange of Engineering Expertise between British India and the Australian Colonies 1880-1914’, Everyday Empires: Trans-Imperial Circulations in a Multi-Disciplinary Perspective, University of Birmingham, UK.

2017    ‘Monsoon Empire: Climate and Water in the British Indian Ocean, 1780-1914’, Labour, Working Animals and Environment in the Indian Ocean World, Indian Ocean World Centre, McGill University, Montreal, Canada, 4-5 May.

2016      ‘The colonial violence of environmental encounters: swamp drainage and resistance in British India and the Australian colonies’, Colonial Formations: Connections and Collisions Conference, University of Wollongong, 23-25 November.

2016      ‘Water dreaming in the west: Western Australia’s quixotic search for “climate independence”’, Australian Historical Association Conference, Federation University, Ballarat, 4-8 July.

2016   (with Char Miller, Linda Nash and Libby Robin), ‘Contextualising Western Drought’, Plenary Roundtable, American Society of Environmental History, April 2.

2016   ‘Thirst’, Foreign Bodies, Intimate Ecologies: Transformations in Environmental History Symposium, Macquarie University, Sydney, 11-13 February.

2016      ‘Experiencing Global Phenomena in the Eastern Indian Ocean’, Experience the Global Environment Workshop, Department II, Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin, 4-6 February.

2015   ‘Engineering, hydro-resilience and the colonial waterscapes of India and Australasia’, International Conference of Historical Geographers, Royal Geographical Society, London, UK, 5-10 July.

2015   ‘Currents of change: climate, meteorology and the eastern Indian Ocean’, International Conference of Historical Geographers, Royal Geographical Society, London, UK, 5-10 July.

2015   ‘Ecologies and technologies of empire: an environmental history of telegraphy in Australasia’, 8th European Society for Environmental History Biennial Conference, Versailles, France, 30 June – 3 July.

2015   ‘Water scarcity in urban Australia and the American West’, Conference of the International Water History Association, Delft, The Netherlands, 24-26 June.

2015   ‘The Anthropocene in the Pacific’, Migrant Ecologies: Environmental histories of the Pacific World Symposium, Amherst College, MA, USA, 23 March.

2015   ‘Reports from the Anthropocene: environmental history and water management in Australia’, American Society of Environmental History, Washington, DC, USA, 18-22 March.

2014   ‘Waterscapes of the West: exploring water and garden history in Australia’s west’, 2nd World Congress of Environmental History, University of Minho, Guimarães, Portugal, 8-12 July.

2014   ‘Science in the service of the Crown’, Crowns and Colonies: Monarchies and Colonial Empires, University of Sydney, 11-13 June.

2013   ‘The arrival of the anthropocene in the antipodes: discovering the greenhouse effect in Australia in the 1980s’, 7th Conference of the European Society for Environmental History, Rachel Carson Centre and Ludwig-Maximilians University, Munich, Germany, 21-24 August.

2013   ‘War in the wheatlands: military metaphors in the 1914 drought’, Threatened Orders Workshop: the Australian natural environment as a threatening and threatened entity, University of Tuebingen, Germany, 15-16 August.

2013   ‘El Niño at the edge of empire: Indian and Australian meteorology in the late nineteenth century’, 24th International Congress of History of Science, Technology and Medicine, Manchester, UK, 21-28 July.

2013   ‘Battling the elements: Australians, hydroresilience and the drought of 1914’, Australian Historical Association Conference, University of Wollongong, NSW, 8-12 July.

2013   ‘Colonial encounters in the waterscapes of southwest Western Australia, 1826-1850’, International Water History Association Conference, Pierres Vives, Montpellier, France, 26-29 June.

2013   ‘On the home front: Australians and the 1914 drought’, Disasters Wet and Dry: rivers, floods and droughts in world history, Renmin University of China, Beijing, 23-26 May.

2013   ‘Wetlands, water and the urban frontier: colonial violence in southwest Western Australia, 1826-1850’,  Annual Conference of the Australia and New Zealand Studies Association of North America, Georgetown University, Washington, DC, 14-16 February.

2012   ‘Colonial climates, constitutions and competition: health, climate and racial anxieties in nineteenth century Western Australia, India and the Cape Colony’, Border Breach: Australia and the global circulation of ideas, International Australian Studies Association Biennial Conference, Monash University, 5-7 December.

2012   ‘Water from the past for the present: groundwater in Perth, Western Australia’, Contemporary History: the past that’s still with us, Deakin University, Geelong, 29-30 November.

2012   ‘Paying the price for water security: water scarcity and demand management in Australia since the 1970s’, Tapping the Turn:  water’s social dimensions, Australian National University, Canberra, 15-16 November.

2012   (with James L. Smith) ‘Rethinking clean: historicising religion, science and the purity of water in the twenty-first century’, Tapping the Turn: water’s social dimensions, Canberra, 15-16 November.

2012   ‘Making a case for a colony: health, climate and racial anxiety in nineteenth century British India and Western Australia‟, Climate, Place and Placelessness: a Virtual Environmental History Workshop, Network in Canadian History and Environment, 18-19 October.

2012   ‘Creating a crisis: graphical representations of water scarcity in Western Australia in the twenty-first century‟, Regarding the Earth: Ecological vision in word and image, 4th ASLEC-ANZ Biennial Conference, RMIT and Monash Universities, 31 Aug - 2 Sept.

2012   ‘Salubrity in the Swan River Colony, 1829 to 1890’, Connections, Australian Historical Association Biennial Conference, The University of Adelaide, South Australia, 9-13 July.

2012   ‘“Our mostpreciousmineral”:  waterforPerth,  WesternAustralia,  inthe1970s resource boom’,  11th Australasian Urban History / Planning History Conference, University of Western Australia and State Library of Western Australia, Perth, Western Australia, 5-8 February.

2012   ‘Making “a way in the wilderness”: colonisation, water and Indigenous ecologies in Western Australia, 1829 to 1918’, Transforming the Wests: understanding shared pasts and enduring issues in the Comparative Wests, Stanford University, California, USA, 21-23 January.

2011   ‘Engineering the wheatbelt: water and agricultural development in Western Australia in the post-war era’, Watermarks: Water’s Heritage, Australia ICOMOS and National Trusts of Australia Conference, Melbourne, Victoria, 27-30 October.

2010   ‘Weathering the change: understanding climatic variability in the southwest of Western Australia, 1829 to 2007’, Climate, Empire and Science in Australasia and the South Pacific, University of Waikato, Hamilton, NZ, 9-10 December.

2010   ‘Achangeofstate:  howdroughtbecameclimatechangeinsouthwest WesternAustralia,  1987-2000’, (Re)viewing History, Australian Historical Association Biennial Conference,  The University of Western Australia and The University of Notre Dame, Perth, Western Australia, 5-9 July.

2010   ‘A colonial climate: explorations of scale and variability in the south west of Australia, 1829 – 2007, 79th Anglo- American Conference of Historians: Environments, Institute of Historical Research, London, UK, 2-3 July.

2010   ‘Greenhouse (P)earth: how predicting the future shapes our present’,  Expertise for the Future III: Canberra Workshop, National Museum of Australia, Canberra, ACT, 7 May.

2010   ‘Dry noon in the west’, American Society of Environmental History Annual Conference, Portland State University, Oregon, USA, 10-14 March.

2010   ‘Dryingout:  the science of drought in southwest Western Australia, 1969-2007’, Climate: Science + Humanities, Graduate Perspectives from Australia, China and the US, Harvard University, Massachusetts, USA, 3-4 March.

2009   ‘Regional flows: a snapshot of the networks of environmental management in the south-west, 1945 to 1972’, 4th Annual Limina Conference, The University of Western Australia, Perth, Western Australia, 5 June.

2009   ‘Diagnosing the dry: an environmental history of the scientific perceptions and understanding of rainfall decline in southwest Australia, 1950-2007’, Climate and Cultural Anxiety: historical perspectives, Colby College, Maine, USA, 1-4 April.

2009   ‘Charting troubled waters: an exploration of the scientific research into winter rainfall decline in southwest Western Australia, 1970-2009’, Greenhouse 2009: climate change and resources, Burswood Convention Centre, Perth, Australia, 23-26 March.

2008   ‘“Fear the hose”: an historical exploration of sustainable water use in Perth gardens, 1970s’, Cities Nature Justice Symposium: dialogues for social sustainability in public spaces, University of Technology Sydney, 10-12 December.

2008   ‘A thirsty city: an environmental history of water use in residential Perth, Western Australia, 1970s’, Australian Historical Association Biennial Conference, University of Melbourne, 7-10 July.

Seminars

2014   ‘Search for Cycles: the influence of India in Australian meteorology in the nineteenth century’, Department of History Seminar Series, Monash University, 30 May.

2013   ‘Australians, hydroresilience and the 1914 drought’, Department of History Seminar Series, University of Waikato, New Zealand, 16 May.

2013   ‘Withering Wests? Environmental histories of water in Western Australia and the American West’, Department of History Seminar Series, Stanford University, 21 February.

2013   ‘Western living down under: Sunset Magazine in Australian suburban culture during the twentieth century’, Winter Seminar Series, Bill Lane Centre for the American West, Stanford University, 13 February. 

2012   ‘Common ground and colonisation: water in southwest Western Australia, 1826-1850’, Department of History Seminar Series, Monash University, 7 Sept.