Editor (Feb 2013 – present)
Hails from: Willunga, South Australia. Renee has lived in Perth since 2009.
Past life: Renee completed her journalism degree majoring in broadcast news, public relations and politics while volunteering for various news outlets before joining the ScienceNetwork WA team as a journalist in 2011.
Favourite Science: New technology, renewable energy, human biology and health sciences are but a few. She loves working for ScienceNetwork because of the diversity of the topics and the wealth of information she is able to learn from experts in their fields.
Evolving to: A career in writing. She would love to learn the ins and outs of book publishing industry and wants to be involved in communicating information to people. She loves the written word and how works of fiction and non-fiction are powerful tools to both influence and inform.
Loves: Keeping busy. When she’s not working at ScienceNetwork Renee juggles a hectic social life, salsa dancing, reading anything she can get her hands on, wining and dining and planning dream holidays.
Hails from: Perth, Western Australia
Past life: Nick is a journalism graduate from Curtin University where he worked as a news editor for the uni newspaper The Western Independent. While at Uni Nick interned at the West Australian for a short period and also gained experience in feature writing. Since leaving Curtin Nick has been employed at Aspermont Limited in Perth writing for its online biotechnology and mining publications and has also worked at WA Business News and the Department of Fire and Emergency Services.
Favourite Science: I have had experience writing about biotechnology applications in the health and medicine field. But I am also passionate about conservation and the potential scientific applications for becoming more environmentally friendly as a society.
Evolving to: The possibilities are endless!
Loves: I am a definite science fiction buff, so when I get some free time I will be watching my favourite TV programs including Battlestar Galactica and Stargate. Other than that I like to stay fit and healthy by going to the gym, walking my dog or heading out to the cultural events around Perth.
Hails from: Perth, Western Australia (he wishes it was "Grooves-ville", though)
Past life: Where's Richard Dawkins when you need him? There ain't no past lives, people! (Did you know that Richard Dawkins is married to Lalla Ward, who played the second Romana in Doctor Who and was once married to the fourth Doctor, Tom Baker?) Okay, okay... Chris has broad journalistic experience, working for mainstream and local newspapers, independent publications and freelancing for numerous titles, as well as extensive work in media and public relations.
Favourite science: Silkience, the science of silkening your hair (actually, he's more into Johnson's Baby Shampoo - no more tears). Oh, all right, something serious if you must - anything that might be a bit Doctor Who-ish, given his penchant for anything relating to the TV Time Lord (and yes, Chris did write a Doctor Who short story once. Two Steps Forward, One Step Back in the Short Trips: Defining Patterns collection if you must know).
Evolving to: hopefully from Neanderthal to something resembling sub-human. Oh, this is about writing! You pay, I write. Ugg ugg. Simple. Make fire now. Where club?
Loves: People who buy his novel Journo's Diary (he's absolutely shameless). People who want to stage his plays (don't say you weren't warned). Oh, and people who support Groovy Boots Theatre, his production company (you knew another link was coming, didn't you?)
Hails from: British born and Australian bred
Past life: Research scientist studying the communication of proteins and cells in different disease models, until a recent transition to tertiary education, which currently takes up most of my working week
Favourite Science: Medicine and health
Evolving to: Just evolving for the time being
Loves: Science, medical research, reading, reflection and writing, being inspired, getting organised, the sounds of the tabla, movies, massages, travelling, creative arts, food, animals and fashion
Hails from: Perth, Western Australia
Past life: Intrepid journalist/volunteer in Palestine, Egypt, Israel, China, India, Tibet, Brasil, United States and various others.
Favourite Science: Physical sciences and Creationism (nah, just kidding).
Evolving to: Foreign correspondent.
Loves: Spanish guitar, fine wine and the writings of Hermann Hesse.
Name: Marisa Wikramanayake (but she's happy to be called the Science Community's Lois Lane just for the sake of her ego). I'm also on twitter @mwikramanayake
Hails from: I'm Sri Lankan born, world travelled (seriously, you should see my passports), and Perth nested and based.
Past life: I've been a magician, a dancer, a newspaper columnist and I've written/edited for Diabetes WA, Dorian Gray Pictures, and the Centre for Policy Development.
Favourite science: You mean I must choose one? Right now, I am writing an MA thesis on Neuroscience and Journalism but I love most sciences having dabbled in Biology, Genetics, Geology, Geography, Anthropology and Archaeology for years at university. I just love Science so long as it understands it has to share my attention and love with the Arts as well.
Evolving to: I'd love to work for Lonely Planet, Nature, WIRED, and National Geographic but mostly I want to write about things that matter for publications that care about things that matter. And I'd like to finish my book. And my thesis. And then write more books. Maybe even science books. On Neuroscience!
Love: I love reading (send me a book), blogging and writing (poetry & general & crime fiction). I like taking too many pictures of things and dancing, preferably not at the same time. I paint ok, play drums badly and cook extremely well. And I like shivering in tents while camping. I'm also a geek goddess & a gamer.
Contact me: firstname.lastname@example.org
Hails from: The Hills of Perth.
Past life: involved being a student at Murdoch University studying Journalism and Media Studies. This pretty much means watching movies and writing about them.
Favourite Science: My favourite thing about writing for Science Network WA is that I get to directly see and talk about interesting and groundbreaking science that is taking place in Perth.
There has been and still is a farming tradition in my family so I enjoy writing about and I’m really happy to see there is a lot of research into areas that will help agriculture in the future.
Evolving to: In the future I hope to write about the artistic side of video games as I think it is a new emerging media in its infancy that does not have the status it deserves as an art form, plus they are usually fun to play.
Loves: When I am not writing I enjoy travelling (when I can afford it), photography and drumming. My skill level at these ranges between completely inept to somewhat competent.
Thanks for taking a look at my bio and I hope you enjoying reading all of my future articles.
Hails from: Toronto, Canada.
Past life: I’m the author of five novels, including two science fiction titles for young people. How to be a Hero on Earth Five and How to Save the Universe… Again involve inter-dimensional travel, gravitational waves and an elite physicist with a penchant for ragtime jazz. Unfortunately these are only currently available in Canada. I currently work as Marketing Communications Writer/Editor for the Perth International Arts Festival.
Favourite Science: I have a great admiration and interest in UWA’s Oceans Institute. The untapped potential of the world’s oceans is astonishing.
Evolving to: I’m interested in eventually moving into university communications.
Loves: The arts, reading, travel.
Name: Magdeline Lum, Mags will do fine. Maggie will not do because firstly I wasn't born when Rod Stewart wrote the song and secondly, I don't look like a packet of noodles.
Hails from: Christmas Island, Australia.
Past life: As a graduate chemist my habitat was a lab on FIFO minesites in Western Australia. When I grew up into a chemist I worked in research labs.
Favourite Science: I have to admit that chemistry and metallurgy are my favourite areas of science. These are two areas of science that only hit the headlines when things go wrong and no one ever hears the positives. When it comes to fields of science, they're the underdogs. I do think SNWA is doing a good job at reporting on these areas.
Evolving to: I would one day love to write for the likes of Nature, National Geographic and COSMOS Magazine.
Loves: When I'm not writing, I can be found with a camera in hand or wielding a sword at fencing.
Hails from: Perth
Past life: After a five-year career in the music industry and two West Australian Music Industry Awards, I started my career in the communications field through radio broadcasting. I worked as a presenter and producer at the first English-speaking radio station in Paris: 'Paris Live Radio'. Since returning to Australia, I have worked as a 'hired gun' providing freelance material for science and medical websites, government publications and music magazines.
Currently, I still provide some freelance material while I lecture in journalism and undertake a doctoral degree at Curtin University in Cultural Studies. My thesis addresses the recent removal of gender restrictions from direct combat roles in the Australian Defence Force.
Evolving to: Conflict researcher and stringer in Africa
Favourite science: Medical breakthroughs; imagine wiping out cancer for good.
Love: Writing, reading and rock n roll
Past Editor (Feb 2011 – March 2013)
Hails from: The northern suburbs of Perth, Western Australia.
Past life: I’ve worked mainly around communication and the food and wine industry given my official education was in BSc Viticulture and Oenology. I’ve seen the ins and outs of coffee roasting process; I’ve worked as a winemaker, and have consulted to various establishments on communication and promotion after a going back to uni for Professional Writing and Publishing. I’ve been a winewriter of a splendid local magazine called SPICE and continue this vinous trend on my blog www.tannicteeth.com.
Favourite Science: I really did love the Viticulture and Oenology degree as it covered microbiology (Oh glorious Saccharomyces cerevisiae we owe you so much!), organic chemistry, soil science, agronomy, basically everything in the biosphere. I was nicknamed nature boy at high school probably for good reason.
Evolving to: Idyllically dreaming? I’d like to be a published writer/blogger. Back to reality? I’d like further my experience in content management process—offering better (and discerning) visual and written content online. I believe that makes the foundation of a sound website and news service.
Loves: Reading better press to engage the brain: The Monthly, The Global Mail, and The Conversation, creamy Bokeh, fine food producers, crunching leaves, African coffee, déjà vu, all things old, beautiful and ridiculously discarded, J.S. Bach and Chopin, Stilton and Époisses, Great Southern riesling and Mornington pinot.
Hails from: Perth, Western Australia
Past life: For ten years I was an automotive technician specialising in European vehicles. I was looking for a change of lifestyle and career so decided to go to university. I'm currently studying Journalism and International Relations at Curtin.
Favourite Science: They are all so vital in our quest to improve the life of the planet and its inhabitants that it is impossible to pick favourites, but if I had to...Physics, Astronomy, Medicine, Environmental/renewable energy sciences would be at the top of the list.
Evolving to: Full time multimedia science communicator.
Loves: My family, learning, cricket and good beer.
Hails from: Perth, Western Australia
Past life: I’m a fresh Curtin journalism graduate, web content editor for Central Institute of Technology and ready to take on the world. In the past I’ve dipped my toes in mining and at the ripe old age of 14 began my first job as a ‘pie technician’ for Jester’s Pies.
Favourite Science: After science fiction, astronomy and technology are great interests of mine. Writing for SNWA provides a great privilege, being able to talk to scientists and find out what’s happening in these areas in WA on the frontline.
Evolving to: I’m still finding my feet in this industry and will go where the writing takes me. I think versatility is crucial for a journalist so for now I’ll write what I can for who ever I can.
Loves: While I’m not writing I’m partial to spending my time with my xBox, kettle bell and going for a run. I enjoy good food and attempting to cook some myself (with varying degrees of success). I’m also a cheesy action movie tragic and have a vast, but questionable, music taste.
Hails from: Perth, Western Australia
Past life: I completed a Bachelor of Biomedical Science at Notre Dame University in 2008 and was also nominated for the Perth Scientific Achievement Award. As part of my degree I enjoyed an internship at PMH in the Respiratory Dept where I had opportunity offered to complete an honours year. The next year I dabbled in studying physiotherapy until I realised that anything so closely associated with sport just wasn't my thing! I later went on to study Post Graduate Journalism at Curtin University where I was the student editor of the Western Independent in 2011. I was fortunate to be able to apply this skill combination to writing for the ScienceNetwork WA and enjoy writing about the many West Aussie breakthroughs.
Favourite Science: Health and Medicine.
Evolving to: Currently studying Law at Curtin University. Love debating passionate issues, so seriously hoping that I am heading in the right direction here.
Loves: Mulberries:, all vegetables, baking, reading, my chihuahuas, animal welfare.
Regional Journalist (Kimberley)
Hails from: Australia
Past life: Manager and breakfast announcer, Puranyangu-Rangka Kerrem Aboriginal radio, Halls Creek.
Favourite Science: You do ask some difficult questions! I am not sure if I have one. I enjoy Biology, Ecology, Archaeology, Palaeontology, Geology, Meteorology, Astronomy and Statistics.
Evolving to: becoming a better story teller - more radio, TV or film.
Loves: art, nature, photography, music, dance, theatre, stories.
Hails from: Fremantle, Western Australia
Past Life: Graduated from Murdoch University with a Bachelor of Arts Degree and Graduate Diploma in Education. Studies included both the arts and environmental science. Teacher of predominantly ‘at risk’ youth and spent some interesting years teaching juvenile offenders with Department of Corrective Services. Research work is both a past and present favourite.
Favourite Science: Really enjoyed studying ‘Pollutants and Toxicology’ at university. This sparked my keen interest in the link between pollutants and cancer. I love farming and have farming ancestry running through my veins. Equally, I’m committed to conservation - especially in terms of the fragile ecosystems of Western Australia.
Evolving to: I hope researching and writing about interesting topics for SNWA will continue to evolve. It’s wonderful to learn about new developments in science, farming, conservation etc. I also like to turn my hand at poetry and biographies and have a play (musical comedy) in mind – just need to get it onto paper!
Loves: my amazing children, laughing with my husband, our cattle dogs, horses, my best friend, good food and wine, reading and long walks. I love the natural environment and feel that the essence of good health is to stay as close to nature as possible. Other loves include cricket, art, theatre, photography and the continuation of my world travels.
Hails from: Perth, Western Australia
Past life: My background is in science/psychology. I have previously volunteered/written for several publications and absolutely loved the busy newsroom environment.
Favourite Science: Animal biology, environmental science, archaeology, and neuroscience. I love animals, even the strange or slimy ones, so animal biology has always been a fascinating topic of interest for me. Whenever I go on trips out of the city I’m usually busy staring at strange animals popping out all over the place.
Evolving to: I would love to write for scientific publications such as National Geographic and Cosmos. I also hope to one day write for Hyper and other gaming magazines.
Loves: Anything to do with The Simpsons. If I see any Simpsons merchandise I have to buy it on the spot, period... otherwise I react very badly. I also enjoy playing acoustic and electric guitar, reading books and magazines, and playing horror games.
Hails from: The Hague, The Netherlands
Past life: Medical scientist
Favourite Science: Developmental neuroscience (brain development)
Evolving to: Editor of Health & Medicine related news platform.
Loves: Being with family and friends, working for other science-related jobs, travelling and rowing.
Hails from: Goomalling in the WA Wheatbelt. He was born in Canberra many years before they demolished the hospital, and averaged one address per year in the ACT, South Australia and Western Australia, with occasional forays into the Tropic Zone.
Past life: He has previous convictions for journalism; writing lyrics and poetry; radio scripting; industry and science article proofreading; and for being a writing critic, tutor and judge. There are recorded incidents of study in Earth sciences at Flinders University in South Australia, and in geology at Curtin University of Technology in Western Australia. He was also caught in possession of various licences including taxi, Access taxi, and forklift. Rumoured to be an active hominid, and sometimes mistaken for a smart person.
Favourite Science: Evolutionary geology, an holistic blend of planetary geology, geomorphology and palaeontology, with a particular interest in the Earth’s adolescent transition from its juvenile Archaean form to its young adult Proterozoic form.
Evolving to: If joining the great team at ScienceNetwork WA is not the pinnacle of ambition for a part time science writer, then he’ll have to think about it.
Loves: Reading, watching, and occasionally writing, science fiction; gardening, landscaping and living at the same address long enough to see a tree grow taller than the house; herding cats; and his soul mate. All other loves and interests, too numerous to list, are either fond memories or incidental.
Hails from: Medellin, Colombia. Then Kangaroo Island, South Australia.
Past life: Completed a Bachelor of International Studies at Flinders University in Adelaide before a transcontinental walk taught me the elation of spontaneous writing and the never-ending stream of consciousness. Kerouac was the best. Leaving bar work and some English teaching behind, I recently completed a post-graduate course in Journalism at Murdoch University. Recent media internships in Perth and Jakarta cemented my journalism undertakings.
Favourite Science: The depths of marine biology and age of geology. However, writing for SNWA has opened up my horizons to all parts of science.
Evolving to: News reporter or photojournalist. Give me newspapers, websites, magazines and wire bureaus.
Loves: Music and old bicycles. The complexities of experimental film within a 1970s Polaroid camera and the joy/pain it can bring upon developing. Travelling, maps, sailing, couchsurfing, hitchhiking and climbing rock faces. Poetry and Prose.
Regional Journalist (Peel)
Hails from: Manchester, UK. I've been in Perth for seven years.
Past life: I've had a successful career in marine biology and have had chance to live and work in some beautiful countries while doing so; Scotland,Tanzania,The Philippines, Indonesia and now Western Australia. I've been writing magazine features concentrating on marine science issues for ten years, and have been published in 30 countries. I took up writing full time after the birth of my son 3 years ago. Prior to that I was senior marine scientist for a consultancy.
Favourite Science: Of course, Marine Science, but anything to do with the natural world fascinates.
Evolving to: I'd like to continue honing my science journalism writing, would love to get a feature in New Scientist and National Geographic, and interested in science writing for radio.
Loves: Not much time between a three year old and writing, but anything to do with water (diving, snorkeling, swimming), being in the great outdoors, nature photography, reading as many different types of writing as I can.
Hails from: Perth hills
Past life: In my past lives I dabbled in many things - from wielding pamphlets in shopping malls to lawyering, volunteering with sea turtles in Costa Rica, working in a safari park in Zambia and everything in between.
Favourite Science: Anything to do with the environment and conservation, I am a passionate animal-lover and never cease to be awe-struck and inspired by the wonders of our natural world.
Evolving to: Rock-star, Activist, Safari-babe, documentary maker
Loves: Playing violin, planning holidays, bushwalks and making poor renditions of John Denver songs with my bluegrass band.
Regional Journalist (Gascoyne & Mid West)
Hails from: I grew up in the New Zealand city of Whangarei. This is a small coastal city north of Auckland at the gateway to the Bay of Islands. I moved to Western Australia with my family in 1989.
Past life: Prior to becoming a journalist I worked as a laboratory technician on the Goldfields, in New Zealand and in Geraldton. The majority of this was in civil engineering, materials testing laboratories but I also have spent a considerable amount of time working with cereal crop testing.
Favourite Science: I have always had an interest in science. As I was growing up, one of my neighbours ran the local observatory which I would visit and inspired a lifelong addiction to astronomy. One of my other neighbours was a retired geologist who took me under his wing when I started bringing rocks to him to find out what they were.
Evolving to: As a new journalist I am hoping to develop a career that enables me to combine my favourite interests with my love of writing. In years to come I hope to inspire other young people to engage with the world around them and to pursue their dreams.
Loves: When I’m not writing I love to play music with my musician friends, fish in the beautiful, unpolluted local waters and voraciously read novels and books about my pet subjects (of which there are too many to list).
Hails from: The burbs, Perth, Western Australia
Past life: Lily is a recent journalism graduate from Curtin University, currently passing time as a freelance journalist. She has written for publications across Perth, specialising in science-specific news, women’s interest pieces, entertainment and travel stories. Big on interactive social media, Lily has two blogs: www.chasemedowntherabbithole.wordpress.com and http://makesmeworldly.wordpress.com. Lily has spent over ten years dancing and has spent way too long working in retail. Her goal in life is to see the world for what it is and to show others what she has experienced.
Favourite Science: Anything medical and health based, specifically oncology, cardiovascular health and psychology.
Evolving to: become a well established journalist, travel writer, foreign correspondent or TV/radio host, and potentially foresees a future career in advertising or law.
Loves: Bikram Yoga, globetrotting, spending her summers on the beach, attending every music festival under the sun and taking every day as it comes.
Hails from: Perth
Past life: Lizzie completed studies in Fine Arts many moons ago and then spent about 10 years overseas working as an English teacher and florist. After completing a degree in Public Relations in Toronto, she returned to Perth and has been working in the field ever since. Lizzie's work as a public relations consultant has seen her work for a variety of interesting and not-so-interesting organisations. Her work is diverse but her main role is to write copy to make her employers look fabulous.
Favourite science: Lizzie enjoys writing about science that has an impact on physical and emotional health; the research that builds awareness of issues and works towards making lives healthier and happier.
Evolving to: Lizzie is very happy in her day job doing PR for a hospital, taking care of her little one and writing for ScienceNetwork WA when possible. Much more evolving seems a bit impossible right now.
Loves: Spending time with family and friends, travelling, discovering new things and being creative.