Awards: Royal Society of NSW medals for UNSW scientists

Dr Angela Nickerson
Friday, 8 December, 2017
Cecilia Duong

For their research in botany and in refugee mental health, two UNSW scientists have won prestigious awards from the Royal Society of New South Wales.

Dr Angela Nickerson, from the School of Psychology, an emerging international leader in the field of refugee mental health, was awarded the Society’s Edgeworth David Medal.

Her research focuses on understanding the psychological mechanisms underpinning refugee and post-conflict mental health and developing effective interventions for traumatic stress reactions in refugees.

Her research also expands into the impact of policy in refugee mental health, and cross-cultural considerations in psychological processes.

“Dr Nickerson’s research has been highly influential on both the direction of the research field, as well as policy and practice, both in Australia and overseas,” the Society citation reads.

“Her research has been at the forefront of uncovering the psychological mechanisms that underpin refugee mental health.”

The Edgeworth David Medal is awarded for distinguished research by a young scientist under the age of 35 years for work completed mainly in Australia or for contributing to the advancement of Australian science.

Professor David Keith, Professor of Botany in the UNSW School of Biological, Earth and Environmental Sciences and Senior Principal Research Scientist in the NSW Offic eof Environment and Heritage, was awarded the Clarke Medal for Botany.

Professor Keith’s research interests include the dynamics and management of species populations and ecological communities, risk assessment for biodiversity conservation, and fire ecology.

He is a serving member of the Australian Threatened Species Scientific Committee and the standards committees for the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species and IUCN Red List of Ecosystems.

“Professor Keith is widely regarded as a leading plant ecologist at a state, national and international level,” the Society citation reads.

“His standing is founded on diverse contributions to botany, ecology, and conservation biology, both within Australia and globally.

The Clarke Medal is awarded each year for distinguished research in the natural sciences conducted in the Australian Commonwealth and its territories. The fields of botany, geology and zoology are considered in rotation.