• 1302 Citations
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Personal profile


Dr Katherine Dafforn is an environmental scientist recognised for her contributions to understanding and managing urban impacts in marine systems. She completed her PhD in 2010 and was formerly the Co-Director of the Applied Marine and Estuarine Ecology Lab at the University of New South Wales. She joined Macquarie University in 2018 and is the current Deputy Director of the Sydney Harbour Research Program at the Sydney Institute of Marine Science.

Katherine has developed sensitive monitoring tools that can be applied over large spatial scales and in a range of systems to measure aquatic health. She has also been engaged in the ecological design of marine foreshores and her experimental work has contributed to several urban renewal projects. The findings have provided policy tools for building foreshore infrastructure more sustainably.

Katherine is also enthusiastic about science communication. She has published in media outlets such as The Conversation and is an avid tweeter. She recently received a Young Tall Poppy Science Award for science excellence and community engagement.

External positions

Adjunct Senior Lecturer, The University of New South Wales

3 Apr 20183 Apr 2021

Fingerprint Fingerprint is based on mining the text of the person's scientific documents to create an index of weighted terms, which defines the key subjects of each individual researcher.

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Sediments Chemical Compounds
Estuaries Chemical Compounds
pollutant Earth & Environmental Sciences
infrastructure Earth & Environmental Sciences
habitat Earth & Environmental Sciences
Impurities Chemical Compounds
estuaries Agriculture & Biology
estuary Earth & Environmental Sciences

Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Projects 2014 2021

Research Output 2008 2019

After decades of stressor research in urban estuarine ecosystems the focus is still on single stressors: a systematic literature review and meta-analysis

O'Brien, A. L., Dafforn, K. A., Chariton, A. A., Johnston, E. L. & Mayer-Pinto, M., 13 Feb 2019, In : Science of the Total Environment.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleResearchpeer-review

urban ecosystem
estuarine ecosystem
Aquatic ecosystems

Towards a general framework for the assessment of interactive effects of multiple stressors on aquatic ecosystems: results from the Making Aquatic Ecosystems Great Again (MAEGA) workshop

Van den Brink, P. J., Bracewell, S. A., Bush, A., Chariton, A., Choung, C. B., Compson, Z. G., Dafforn, K. A., Korbel, K., Lapen, D. R., Mayer-Pinto, M., Monk, W. A., O'Brien, A. L., Rideout, N. K., Schäfer, R. B., Sumon, K. A., Verdonschot, R. C. M. & Baird, D. J., 1 Mar 2019, In : Science of the Total Environment.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Aquatic ecosystems
aquatic ecosystem
ecosystem response

Urban impacts across realms: making the case for inter-realm monitoring and management

Bugnot, A. B., Hose, G. C., Walsh, C. J., Floerl, O., French, K., Dafforn, K. A., Hanford, J., Lowe, E. C. & Hahs, A. K., 15 Jan 2019, In : Science of the Total Environment. 648, p. 711-719 9 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/opinionResearchpeer-review

urban area
human activity

Using meta-omics of contaminated sediments to monitor changes in pathways relevant to climate regulation

Birrer, S. C., Dafforn, K. A., Sun, M. Y., Williams, R. B. H., Potts, J., Scanes, P., Kelaher, B. P., Simpson, S. L., Kjelleberg, S., Swarup, S., Steinberg, P. & Johnston, E. L., Jan 2019, In : Environmental microbiology. 21, 1, p. 389-401 13 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

gene expression
coastal sediment
greenhouse gases

Artificial structures alter kelp functioning across an urbanised estuary

Mayer-Pinto, M., Dafforn, K. A., Bugnot, A. B., Glasby, T. M. & Johnston, E. L., Aug 2018, In : Marine Environmental Research. 139, p. 136-143 8 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


Activities 2017 2018

  • 3 Editorial work

PLoS ONE (Journal)

Katherine Dafforn (Editor)
3 Sep 2018 → …

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial workEditorial work

Frontiers in Marine Science (Journal)

Katherine Dafforn (Editor)
1 Feb 2018 → …

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial workEditorial work

Management of Biological Invasions (Journal)

Katherine Dafforn (Editor)
27 Sep 2017 → …

Activity: Publication peer-review and editorial workEditorial work