Environmental management Environment

Environmental management Environment

Human intervention is largely behind issues such as deforestation, pollution, climate change and species extinction. But human intervention is also the key to preserving the environment.

With Macquarie’s environmental management programs you’ll learn the skills you need to manage natural resources and start to turn the tide on these and other issues.

Careers in environmental management

Career opportunities for graduates with a major in Environmental Management include:

  • government and community-based research and monitoring roles
  • government and community-based environmental and resource management
  • environmental consultancy
  • environmental education
  • environmental field and laboratory roles
  • environmental policy
  • environmental planning
  • environment and heritage administration.

Potential employers of graduates with a major in Environmental Management include:

  • environmental businesses and industry
  • community environment groups
  • community relations sector of business and industry
  • national and international conservation agencies
  • consultancy firms
  • environment protection authorities
  • state and federal government environment departments
  • local councils
  • education programs
  • foreign aid projects
  • heritage bodies
  • mining and other resource industries
  • national parks and wildlife services.

Professional Experience

Study environmental management knee deep in the river systems of rural NSW and see how your studies can directly affect the health of our planet. Start seeing the world in a different light – and you just might change it.

At Macquarie we take a pioneering approach to securing the health of our planet. Through Macquarie University's unique PACE program you can apply your knowledge of environmental management and gain important industry experience for your future career.

"For me, the beauty of the PACE program is that it makes you start thinking about your future by incorporating it into the coursework. It’s really brought a lot of things into focus for me, like how I can make a tangible difference to the environment through my future career. I couldn’t recommend it highly enough." – PACE alumna, Samantha Grant-Vest

No matter what you decide to study at Macquarie, PACE has an activity for you. Learn more about the opportunities available through PACE.

Graduate outcomes

Graduates from the Environmental Management program will be able to:

  • understand the role and relevance of environmental management and scientific research in society
  • apply knowledge of environmental management and major environmental issues using principles of sustainability, connectivity, conservation and other core concepts
  • understand how environmental science and social science can be integrated in environmental management and in environmental, legal and policy frameworks
  • examine, analyse, interpret and integrate scientific information from various primary and secondary sources
  • apply the skills of critical thinking, data analysis, evaluation and interpretation to environmental issues and environmental management problems
  • communicate to specialist and non-specialist target audiences in a range of formats, including through text, visual and oral mediums
  • address environmental issues by ethical means and by applying appropriate interdisciplinary, collaborative, integrated and adaptive research approaches to environmental management

Our program will help you understand your environment from social and scientific viewpoints and will demonstrate how an interdisciplinary approach to environmental management is integral to human and ecosystem health.

Our philosophy is that strong links between environmental and social science, management and policy are necessary for integrated, adaptive and appropriately targeted environmental management strategies. As such, we have strong links to research and teaching in: 

  • environmental earth science
  • human geography
  • remote sensing and GIS
  • climate science.

We draw upon a range of materials and case studies to build an understanding of key environmental management issues, with an emphasis on practical applications and outcomes, and to develop a suite of core professional literacy skills.

Environmental Management can be studied as a major (or a minor) within a number of undergraduate degrees. Two popular options are to study Environmental Management as part of a Bachelor of Environment or a Bachelor of Science.

Deforestation hurts the environment, and poses a threat to plants, animals and humans. But afforestation is a problem too: for example, when grasslands turn into forest.

“I wanted to know what would happen to the ecosystem if we lost Africa’s great savannahs,” says Emma.

“Aside from the impacts on the water cycle, fire regimes, and plant biodiversity, I found that the zebras, lions and other iconic animals will struggle to graze, and tourism will struggle as it becomes more and more difficult for tourists to see the animals they came to see.”

Now, as a PhD student in Australia, Emma is looking at the basic science that underpins the growth of plants. As a member of Ian Wright’s lab at Macquarie University, her work will form part of a larger Australian Research Council funded project to understand how plant traits affect plant growth.

“This is one of the central questions in ecology, particularly as we try to understand how climate change will affect the distribution of forests, grasslands and other ecosystems,” says Emma.

“It’s nearly impossible to model ‘reality’, when there are so many species to account for. To understand the changes we’re seeing from climate change, we need to simplify ecosystems.”

Her research aims to categorise species based on their traits and how fast they grow. For example, how is the growth of a tree affected by the size of its leaves or the density of its wood?

“I’m particularly interested in how these factors affect a plant’s growth rate differently over its life. A lot of what we know so far is based on seedlings, but trees can live for hundreds of years,” says Emma.

Emma’s work will contribute to models which could help us predict how ecosystems might be affected by climate change, and help us understand how plants interact with each other and the environment.

Emma is one of 15 women from around the world awarded one of this year’s $20,000 UNESCO-L’Oréal For Women in Science International Fellowships, which support talented young women scientists to take up research positions in other countries. She received her prize in Paris on Wednesday 19 March.

Please watch the video diary to see what is expected during this field trip. Consider taking BIOL379 or BIOL773 (conservation and management) and join us there in 2014.

It contains information on three key research areas:

  • Biodiversity – This research area is led by Climate Futures at Macquarie University, with support from CSIRO. It will focus on increasing knowledge of the capacity of species, ecosystems and landscapes to adapt to current and future climate variability, identify refuges where species can survive extreme events, and explore ways to make integrated decisions for local land use plans that optimise biodiversity outcomes.
  • Adaptive communities – This research area is led by the Institute for Sustainable Futures, University of Technology, with support from CSIRO. It will increase knowledge of ways in which urban and rural communities adapt and respond to current and future extreme events and climate variability, and explore ways in which the government can support communities in building their resilience and adaptive capacity.
  • Coastal processes and responses – This research area is led by the Sydney Institute of Marine Science (SIMS) with support from the Australian Climate Change Adaptation Research Network for Settlements and Infrastructure (ACCARNSI). It will focus on providing local communities and councils in coastal zones with information on coastal and estuary impact assessment, risk management and adaptation responses.

The Hub draws on priorities developed through OEH knowledge strategies and a need to develop research that is operationally relevant.

The Biodiversity Node

Our vision for the Biodiversity Node of the NSW Adaptation Research Hub is a dynamic, collaborative partnership of researchers with OEH scientists, managers and policy makers, incorporating a broad spectrum of partners from universities, CSIRO Climate Adaptation Flagship (CAF), the NSW Department of Primary Industries, local governments, community groups and business.

The Node will be a facilitative body catalysing and supporting the research efforts of the wider adaptation community by providing leadership and coordination with an emphasis on linking researchers to end–users.

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