Dr Daniel Walker

Dr Daniel Walker is Chief of CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences.

Dr Daniel Walker: Chief of CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences

Dr Daniel Walker applies his expertise in integration science as Chief of one of the nation's largest sustainability science research teams.

  • 15 September 2009 | Updated 5 August 2013

In this article

  1. Overview
  2. Publishing History


Page 1 of 2

Current activities

Dr Dan Walker is Chief of the CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences (CES) Division, taking up the appointment in July 2013.

Dr Walker is spearheading CES's broad multidisciplinary research and impact in environmental, economic and social dimensions of sustainable production and consumption and biodiversity conservation.

Dr Walker has distinguished himself for national and international leadership in areas of environmental decision-making, participatory action research, and integrated evidence-based approaches to sustainable development and food security.

He has taken on further research management and leadership roles in developing research strategy, building research capability and managing research partnerships.

Dr Walker  recently led a number of CSIRO-wide initiatives including the organisation's Regional Sites Strategy, and the Indigenous Engagement Strategy, which is now an integral part of best practice research in CSIRO.  He is facilitating discussion about a proposed Global Research Precinct in Canberra.


Dr Dan Walker has a distinguished research record in the UK, Asia and Australia. He has a background in international research in development, sustainability and human ecology.

Dr Walker joined CSIRO in 1994 in Townsville, Queensland,  as a research scientist working on decision support tools for regional resource use planning.

Dr Walker's areas of research expertise include:

  • systems analysis of regional dynamics
  • development and implementation of decision support systems for adaptive natural resource management and capacity building
  • participatory research methodologies
  • Indigenous and scientific knowledge integration.

Dr Walker was the Regional Planning & Management Theme Leader for the Co-operative Research Centre (CRC) for Tropical Savannas from 2000–03.

Within CSIRO's former Sustainable Ecosystems Division, Dr Walker was Program Leader of the Resource Futures Program in 2003, Theme Leader for Sustainable Regional Development, took on the roles of Deputy Chief in 2007 and Acting Chief from 2008-11. Dr Walker was Deputy Chief of CSIRO Ecosystem Sciences Division from its formation in 2011 until his appointment as Chief.

Academic qualifications

Dr Walker has been awarded:

  • Bachelor of Science at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom (UK) in 1988
  • First Class Honours in agriculture, forestry and rural economy from the same institution in 1989
  • Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Wales, UK, in 1994.

His doctoral thesis was titled A knowledge based system approach to agroforestry research and extension.

Dr Walker also graduated from the Australian Institute of Company Directors.


Dr Walker has lead research in the analytical integration of local and formal scientific knowledge in the design of research and development programs in developing countries, decision support tools and methods for regional planning, collaborative resource information centres, and regional resource use dynamics.

He has published research in journals as diverse as:

  • Landscape Ecology
  • Journal of Industrial Ecology
  • Australian Journal Of Botany
  • Journal of Environmental Management
  • The Australian Journal of Environmental Management
  • Animal Feed Science and Technology
  • Agricultural Systems (also a member of its editorial board)
  • Agroforestry Systems
  • Computers & Electronics in Agriculture
  • AI Applications; Environmental Software
  • The New Review of Applied Expert Systems.

Dr Walker has received the following awards:

  • Stewart McDougall Prize and the Stebbing Medal for Silviculture
  • James Anthony More Memorial Prize for Agriculture
  • University of Edinburgh Bursary.

Read more about Ecosystem Sciences.