Emeritus Professor Jann Conroy

Jann ConroyProfessor Emeritus Jann Conroy continues to make a valuable contribution to the Institute. Her research has focused on understanding how climate change will influence the trade-off between growth and water use of fast- and slow- growing eucalypts.

The novel feature of this research is that the trees are exposed to CO2 concentrations of 280ppm (pre-industrial level), 400ppm (current) and 700ppm (predicted for the future) in combination with higher temperatures and periodic drought. The research was conducted in the facilities of the Hawkesbury Forest Experiment (controlled-environment glasshouses and CO2-enrichment field site).

Areas of Research / Teaching Expertise

Tree Nutrition and Physiology; Global Change Biology; Ecological Physiology; Plant Physiology; Ecosystem Adaptation to Climate Change; Ecosystem Adaptation in Australia; Ecosystem Adaptation in the World; Forest and Woodland Flora, Fauna and Biodiversity

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Grants / Projects

Development of a laser microdissection microscopy approach for identification of plant cell-inhabiting fungi
Co-Researchers: Associate Professor Ian Anderson, Professor John Cairney, Professor David Tissue
Partner/Funding Body: University of Western Sydney Research Infrastructure Funds Scheme
Period: 2009

Beyond an Inconvenient Truth: coping with changes in atmospheric CO2 and climate change
Co-Researchers: Professor David Tissue
Partner/Funding Body: University of Western Sydney International Research Initiatives Scheme
Period: 2008-2009

Eucalypt growth in past and future environments: a novel approach to understanding the impacts of atmospheric CO2 and climate
Co-Researchers: Professor David Tissue, Associate Professor Nathan Phillips, Associate Professor Barry Logan
Partner/Funding Body: Australian Research Council, Discovery Grant
Period: 2008-2010

Global citizenship and the agency of the museum sector in climate change interventions
Partner/Funding Body: Australian Research Council, Linkage International Grant
Period: 2008-2009

Trade Off between carbon sequestration in forests and water yields under rising CO2
Co-Researchers: Professor David Ellsworth, Professor David Tissue
Partner/Funding Body: NSW Department of Environment and Climate Change, Grant Climate Action Grants Program
Period: 2007–2009

Integrated system for analysis of structure and function of tree canopiesCo-Researchers: Associate Professor Robert Spooner-Hart, Dr Kelvin Montagu, Dr Anthony Haigh
Partner/Funding Body: University of Technology, Sydney and University of Western Sydney Research Infrastructure Fund
Period: 2006-2007

The Hawkesbury Forest Experiment: Impacts of Precipitation and CO2 on Trees
Co-Researchers: Professor David Ellsworth, Professor David Tissue, Associate Professor Ross McMurtrie, Professor Derek Eamus, Dr Anthony Haigh, Dr Belinda Medlyn, Professor Sune Linder
Partner/Funding Body: Australian Greenhouse Office
Period: 2005-2008

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Awards and Recognition

Awarded the title of Emeritus Professor of the University of Western Sydney, 2008. Her passion for the University and her faith in recognising 'people' as the University's greatest asset are well known. Her external research income is over $6M. She also continues to champion the Institute's activities with state and federal government, industry, and funding agencies.

Awarded the C.S. Piper Prize for best original research in the field of plant nutrition awarded by the Royal Australian Chemical Institute, 1995.

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Selected Publications

Book Chapter

Ghannoum O, Searson M, Conroy J, (2006) Nutrient and water demands of plants under climate change, in Agroecosystems in a Changing Climate, Advances in Agroecology Series 12, Newton PCD, Edwards G, Carran A, Niklaus P, (Eds), CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL, USA, pp 53–83

Journal Articles

Milham PJ, Wenzel RG, Holford P, Haigh AM, Chaffer K, Hawkins CA, Humphris C, Fabien J, Conroy JP, (2018) 'Equilibrating stable Cd isotopes with acidic soils', Communications in soil science and plant analysis, vol.49, no.20, pp 2497-2506

Jinadasa N, Collins D, Holford P, Milham PJ, Conroy JP, (2016)  'Reactions to cadmium stress in a cadmium tolerant variety of cabbage (Brassica oleracea L.): is cadmium tolerance a desirable trait in food crops?',  Environmental Science and Pollution Research, vol.23, no.6, 5296-5306

Chehine C, Holford P, Ghannoum O, Collins D, Conroy JP, Milham PJ, (2014) 'Transpiration influences cadmium uptake by baby leaf Spinach (Spinacia Oleracea L.)', American Journal of Agricultural and Biological Science, vol.9, no.4, pp 523-533

Barton CVM, Duursma RA, Medlyn BE, Ellsworth DS, Eamus D, Tissue DT, Adams MA, Conroy J, Crous KY, Liberloo M, Löw M, Linder S, McMurtrie RE, (2012) 'Effects of elevated atmospheric [CO2] on instantaneous transpiration efficiency at leaf and canopy scales in Eucalyptus saligna', Global Change Biology, vol.18, no.2, pp 585-295

Barton CVM, Ellsworth DS, Medlyn BE, Duursma RA, Tissue DT, Adams MA, Eamus D, Conroy JP, McMurtrie RE, Parsby J, Linder S, (2010) 'Whole-tree chambers for elevated atmospheric CO2 experimentation and tree scale flux measurements in south-eastern Australia: The Hawkesbury Forest Experiment', Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, vol.150, no.7-8, pp 941-951

Ghannoum O, Phillips NG, Conroy JP, Smith RA, Attard RD, Woodfield R, Logan BA, Lewis JD, Tissue DT, (2010) 'Exposure to preindustrial, current and future atmospheric CO2 and temperature differentially affects growth and photosynthesis in Eucalyptus', Global Change Biology, vol.16, no.1, pp 303-319

Ghannoum O, Phillips NG, Sears MA, Logan BA, Lewis JD, Conroy JP, Tissue DT, (2010) 'Photosynthetic responses of two eucalypts to industrial-age changes in atmospheric [CO2] and temperature', Plant Cell and Environment, vol.33, no.10, pp 1671-1681

Logan BA, Hricko C, Lewis JD, Ghannoum O, Phillips NG, Smith RA, Conroy JP, Tissue DT, (2010) 'Examination of pre-industrial and future [CO2] reveals the temperature-dependent CO2 sensitivity of light energy partitioning at PSII in eucalypts', Functional Plant Biology, vol.37, pp 1041-1049

Ghannoum O, Paul MJ, Ward JL, Beale MH, Corol DI, Conroy JP, (2008) 'The sensitivity of photosynthesis to phosphorus deficiency differs between C3 and C4 tropical grasses', Functional Plant Biology, vol.35, no.3, pp 213-221

Atwell BJ, Henery ML, Rogers GS, Seneweera SP, Treadwell M, Conroy JP, (2007) 'Canopy development and hydraulic function in Eucalyptus tereticornis grown in drought in CO2-enriched atmospheres', Functional Plant Biology, vol.34, no.12, pp 1137-1149

Ghannoum O, Conroy J, (2007) 'Phosphorus deficiency inhibits growth in parallel with photosynthesis in a C3 (Panicum laxum) but not two C4 (P. coloratum and Cenchrus ciliaris) grasses', Functional Plant Biology, vol.34, no.1, pp 72-81

Malcolm P, Holford P, McGlasson B, Conroy J, Barchia I, (2007) 'Growth and its partitioning in Prunus rootstocks in response to root zone temperature', Scientia Horticulturae, vol.112, no.1, pp 58-65

Milham PJ, Payne TE, Lai B, Trautman, RL, Cai Z, Holford P, Haigh AM, Conroy JP, (2007) 'Can synchrotron micro-X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy be used to map the distribution of cadmium in soil particles?', Australian Journal of Soil Research, vol.45, pp 624-628

Thomas D, Montagu K, Conroy J, (2007) 'Temperature effects on wood anatomy, wood density, photosynthesis and biomass partitioning of Eucalyptus grandis seedlings', Tree Physiology, vol.27, no.2, pp 251-260

Malcom P, Holford P, McGlasson B, Conroy J, (2006) 'Root zone temperature influences growth, partitioning, leaf morphology and physiology of the peach rootstock, Green Leaf Nemaguard', Australian Journal of Experimental Agriculture, vol.46, pp 689–696. IF 0.676

Thomas DS, Montagu KD, Conroy JP, (2006) 'Leaf inorganic phosphorus concentration is a better indicator of phosphorus status, growth and photosynthesis of Eucalyptus grandis seedlings than total phosphorus', Forest Ecology Management, vol.223, pp 267–274

Thomas DS, Montagu KD, Conroy JP, (2006) 'Temperature effects of leaf on wood anatomy, wood density, photosynthesis and biomass partitioning of Eucalyptus grandis seedlings', Tree Physiology, vol.27, pp 251–260

Thomas DS, Montagu KD, Conroy JP, (2006) 'Effects of leaf and branch removal on carbon assimilation and stem wood density of Eucalyptus grandis seedlings', Trees-Structure and Function, vol.20, no.6, pp 725–733

Milham P, Jinadasa N, Hawkins C, Holford P, Conroy J, Collins D, (2004) 'Modelling the effects of soil properties on the concentration of Cd extracted by 10 mM CaCl2 from soils of the Sydney Basin', Australian Journal of Soil Research, vol.42, pp 799-813