Matt Hayward
University of Newcastle

Matt Hayward bio photo

Professor Matt Hayward

Professor of conservation biology, University of Newcastle

See Professor Hayward’s full research profile here.

Research outputs linked to policy change and decision-making

  • Professor Hayward found that researching the conservation ecology of the quokka for his PhD highlighted the threats invasive species pose to critical weight-range mammals, and how species have adapted to the fire regimes implemented by Indigenous people. This led to conservation managers in Western Australia continuing intensive introduced predator control around quokka swamps, while trying to mimic Aboriginal burning regimes to maximise quokka density in their swampy habitats. Evidence of this is in the recovery plan for the species.
  • Professor Hayward worked in South Africa on the reintroduction of top-order predators, which led to modelling of predator–prey preferences that facilitated the prediction of carrying capacity of large predators. This is one of the few works that illustrate how research can benefit management of large predators (Balme et al. 2014 Conservation Letters) and is now used as the primary means of the planning and management of large predators in Africa (Ferreira & Hofmeyr 2014 SA J. Wildl. Manage.) and India (Y. Jhala, Wildlife Institute of India pers. comm.). Lessons on translocations in this context were translated back to an Australian context while he worked for the Australian Wildlife Conservancy as the regional ecologist (numbat, bush stone-curlew, woylie translocations), and in the restoring Gwynedd project in the UK (red squirrel and pine marten translocations).
  • Professor Hayward has sat on threatened species recovery teams (national – black-eared miner, bridled nailtail wallaby, numbat, arid zone fauna; and state – SA bilby). He has reviewed various World Heritage Area assessments. He also sits on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Species Survival Commission specialist groups for: marsupials and monotremes; cats; small carnivores; and translocations.

Current academic employment and positions

  • 2017–present: professor of conservation biology, University of Newcastle.

Highest qualification

  • 2003: PhD, University of New South Wales.

Roles on government or regional organisation committees

  • Professor Hayward has links via collaborative projects with the NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment who govern threatened species management in the state, and projects on threatened macropods are ongoing.

Links with non-government groups or networks

  • Aussie Ark who manage land in the Barrington Tops and are planning on investing in translocations and conservation projects, including the reintroduction of eastern quolls
  • local councils
  • national parks and wildlife services.

Research quality

  • Editor, Journal of Zoology (2015–ongoing); Associate Editor, Acta Theriologica (2007–2015); African Journal of Wildlife Research (2008–ongoing); Conservation Letters (2013–ongoing); Endangered Species Research (2012–ongoing); Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution (2014–ongoing); Journal of Applied Ecology (2013–ongoing); Mammalian Biology (2013–2018); Mammalian Research (2015); PLoS ONE (2011–2015).
  • peer-reviewed journal articles: 156
  • h-index: 41; since 2015: 34
  • i10-index: 97; since 2015: 89.

Training and supervision

  • current: 11 PhD students, 2 Honours & 3 post-doctoral researchers
  • completed: 3 PhD, 24 Masters of Science, 23 Honours, 1 post-doctoral researcher.

My Projects

Current projectCompleted project
NESP RLH, 2021-2027NESP, 2015-2021NERP, 2012-2015TRaCK, 2005-present