Professor Helen Ross is recognised for her contributions among the first social scientists to become strongly involved in environmental management in Australia. She is an interdisciplinary social scientist (environmental psychologist and anthropologist) specialising in social aspects of sustainable development and environmental management. From her groundbreaking early work on Aboriginal housing and settlements, viewed from a social and cultural perspective, she moved into social impact assessment, public participation, urban ecosystems, then her current fields of Indigenous natural resource management, community development, social-ecological systems and their resilience, integrated water resource management, and recently climate change adaptation.
Helen manages social sciences in the School of Agriculture and Food Sciences, the University of Queensland. She focuses particularly on systems approaches to people-environment relationships, sustainability and resilience, and collaboration processes for natural resource management. She chairs Healthy Waterways Social Sciences Experts Panel, and is a member of the Australian Psychological Society’s Climate Change Experts Panel. She has been Co-editor of the Australasian Journal of Environmental Management since 2005, and in that role has guided the gaining of international prominence and an impact factor for the journal, transition to a formal publisher and a more favourable financial model. Most importantly, the journal plays a significant role in providing a reliable and respected knowledge base for environmental management in Australia and New Zealand.
Helen is also an editorial board member of Architectural Science Reviews and International Perspectives on Psychology, One Health, and International Journal of Social Work and Human Services Practice. She is a former board member of Society and Natural Resources.