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Ngoc (Annie) Nguyen


About me

Joining DEEP and CABAH at the start of my PhD in 2020, I focus on the dynamics of floral distribution in eastern Australia on volcanically derived soils. Over the course of my PhD I hope to investigate the patterns and drivers of species occurring in different areas as a result of varying nonbiological (e.g., geologic and climatic) and biological (e.g., animal pollinators) factors.

My research disciplines are as diverse as the mountain-tops I will be studying. I began my journey in Archaeology and Geography as an undergrad at the University of Queensland. At UQ, I also completed my Honours in Geography. My Honours thesis topic was on the timing (~3 Ma) and formation of the island of Timor-Leste, and how the flora of the island was influenced by major climatic and geological processes through time. Continuing with this theme, my Master’s thesis at the University of Melbourne looked into how the flora of south-eastern Australia changed during the Eocene Greenhouse to Oligocene Icehouse transition (~33 Ma) as a result of Australia’s northward migration and Antarctica’s permanent continental-scale glaciation.


Following on from this, I will now look at how the flora of eastern Australia has been shaped from the Eocene to present as the continent migrated over a volcanic hotspot in its equatorward journey. In the past decade I have been fortunate to have the opportunity to explore into other disciplines between each degree; including earthquake modelling at Geoscience Australia and The Australian National University, as well as teaching English as a foreign language in Germany.  

Key interests

  • Plant ecology

  • Biodiversity of tropical forests

  • Climatic and geological processes influencing floral dynamics

  • Conservation, sustainability & sustainable development

  • Land-use change


Griffin, J., Nguyen, N., Cummins, P., & Cipta, A. (2019). Historical Earthquakes of the Eastern Sunda Arc: Source Mechanisms and Intensity‐Based Testing of Indonesia’s National Seismic Hazard Assessment. Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, 109(1), 43-65. DOI: 10.1785/0120180085

Nguyen, N., Griffin, J.D., Cipta, A., & Cummins, P. (2015). Indonesia's Historical Earthquakes: Modelled Examples for Improving the National Hazard Map. Record 2015/23. Geoscience Australia, Canberra. DOI: 10.11636/record.2015.023

Nguyen, N., Duffy, B., Shulmeister, J., & Quigley, M. (2013). Rapid pliocene uplift of timor. Geology, 41(2), 179-182. DOI: 10.1130/g33420.1

Duffy, B. G., Quigley, M., Nguyen, N., & Shulmeister, J. (2011). The rise and fall of an arc-continent collisional orogen: insights from synorogenic sediments in Timor Leste. AGUFM, 2011, T51A-2305. BIBCODE: 2011AGUFM.T51A2305D

PhD research with DEEP


My PhD project, supervised by Prof. Barry Brook, Dr. Jessie Buetell and Dr. Stefania Ondei aims to investigate the drivers of endemism and biodiversity of eastern Australia’s forest on volcanically derived soils formed during Australia’s separation from Gondwana. Volcanic hotspot tracks formed in the Early Eocene in Queensland and continued into New South Wales during the Oligocene through to present-day in Victoria. These elevated volcanic formations may have acted as a refugium for many species during Australia’s many climatic phases and glacial cycles. Accordingly, these potential refugia may be biodiversity hotspots that harbour rare and endangered species with a high degree of endemism. To understand what risks future climate change may pose on their distribution, an understanding of factors that influenced their existence is first required.



View of Main Range from Mt Cordeaux – Annie Nguyen

View of Main Range from Mt Cordeaux – Annie Nguyen

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