New South Wales
Australian National University
Bachelor of Asian Studies (Chinese)
Master of International Law
I grew up in Yass with an interest in raising small orphan animals, learning languages and saving the world. I studied a Bachelor of Asian Studies at ANU, specialising in Mandarin and development studies, and most of a BSc in physics.
I spent a year studying Chinese language and culture at Zhejiang and Yunnan Universities, and during this time developed a particular interest in human rights and development studies. Since then I've had a variety of volunteer experiences in this field, including building houses in Ganhaizi, an ethnic Miao village in rural Yunnan, and later working for the Karen Women's Organisation, a community-based organisation serving the literacy, health and education needs of the Karen refugee population in camps along the Thai-Burma border. In 2007 I came back to Canberra to study international law, after which I was able to go to Hong Kong for an internship in international human rights advocacy with a China-focussed human rights NGO.
I'm particularly interested in international environmental issues in the context of the sustainable development and management of forest and water resources for the benefit of local communities and biodiversity.
Migratory Birds Taskforce, Marine Division.
The Taskforce is responsible for managing and implementing Australia's international obligations under bilateral migratory bird agreements with Japan, China, and the Republic of Korea (JAMBA, CAMBA, and ROKAMBA). It also manages Australia's participation in the Partnership for the East Asian - Australasian Flyway (EAAF Partnership) for the conservation of migratory waterbirds and their habitat within the Flyway.
I worked on the finalisation of a Memorandum of Understanding with the Republic of Korea to transfer the EAAF Partnership Secretariat to Incheon City. I also helped with the process of amending the list of migratory species under the EPBC Act to bring domestic legislation in line with changes to JAMBA. I was responsible for preparing briefs, cables, funding agreements, procurement processes, providing advice on EPBC referrals, and liaising with DFAT counterparts, NGO stakeholders, the Korean Ministry of Environment, and international NGO and state members of the EAAF Partnership.
International Section, Policy Coordination Division
The international section is responsible for engaging on behalf of Australia in a range of multilateral environment forums and bilateral environment activities in our region. My work in this section has been varied and interesting, and has so far included:
- drafting of ministerial correspondence;
- translation of Chinese text concerning water allocation and management of environmental flow in China's major river basins;
- preparation of DEWHA's International Workplan for 2009-2010;
- trial of a template developed by DEWHA and AusAID to streamline reporting by Pacific Island countries (PICs) to the biodiversity-related multilateral environmental agreements; and
- research into ways in which biodiversity conservation can be addressed in current international approaches to REDD programs, which seek to reduce emissions from deforestation and degradation in developing countries.
'the best thing about working for us ... is the environment'