Registered to supervise postgraduate research

1987 …2019

Research output per year

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Personal profile

Research interests

Dr Penny Wurm is an applied plant ecologist with a research practice that includes ecological, agricultural and livelihood applications in northern Australia, eastern Indonesia and Timor Leste. I hold a Bachelor of Science (Hons) and PhD (Ecology). Research on the values and ecology of native Australian rices has led to investigations into the development of enterprises based on native rice - in collaboration with Dr Sean Bellairs at CDU, two CRCs, an Aboriginal enterprise and Territory agencies. Knowledge of the ecology and values of native rices, have also led to investigation of threats posed by invasive grasses to native rices. My student supervision includes projects on invasive species on disturbed sites and monsoonal wetlands, cashew horticulture in Timor Leste, irrigated rice systems in eastern Indonesian and soon in Timor Leste, and commercialisation of native species for Aboriginal enterprises, currently Kakadu Plum and native rices.

I have teaching collaborations with Indonesian colleagues, focussed on rural livelihoods, in eastern Indonesia. Collaboratively, I have developed and taught two Indonesian field intensives, in partnership with Indonesian university colleagues. I am passionate about teaching and have won three national and one institutional team teaching awards, and have served an Associate Dean of Learning and Teaching at the College level.

Education/Academic qualification


Award Date: 19 Feb 2026

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Research Output

Kakadu Plum (Terminalia ferdinandiana) as a Sustainable Indigenous Agribusiness

Gorman, J. T., Wurm, P. A. S., Vemuri, S., Brady, C. & Sultanbawa, Y., 20 Nov 2019, In : Economic Botany. p. 1-18 18 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

  • Spatial dynamics of invasive para grass on a monsoonal floodplain, Kakadu National Park, Northern Australia

    Boyden, J., Wurm, P., Joyce, K. E. & Boggs, G., 1 Sep 2019, In : Remote Sensing. 11, 18, p. 1-31 31 p., 2090.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
  • 2 Downloads (Pure)
  • Open Access
  • Deployment of Open Data Kit for Information Management for Various Engineering Projects In Rural, Indonesia

    Narayan, M., Evans, K., Lamsal, B., Thapa, R., Hobgen, S. E., Myers, B., Wurm, P., Godwin, P. B., Riwu Kaho, N. & Markus, J., 29 Mar 2017, In : International Research Journal of Electronics and Computer Engineering. 3, 1, p. 1-6 6 p.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Open Access
  • Thesis

    Molecular genetic and taxonomic studies of the swamp eel (Monopterus albus Zuiew 1793)

    Author: Arisuryanti, T., 2016

    Supervisor: Austin, C. (Supervisor) & Wurm, P. (Supervisor)

    Student thesis: Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) - CDU


    Remote sensing applications: understanding the landscape ecology of invasive para grass (Urochloa mutica) on monsoonal wetlands, Kakadu National Park, Australia

    Author: Boyden, J. M., Oct 2015

    Supervisor: Wurm, P. (Supervisor), Joyce, K. (Supervisor) & Boggs, G. S. (Supervisor)

    Student thesis: Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) - CDU


    Vegetation development in gold mine rehabilitation in relation to cattle grazing in the Northern Territory, Australia

    Author: Warintan Saragih, E., 2017

    Supervisor: Bellairs, S. M. (Supervisor) & Wurm, P. (Supervisor)

    Student thesis: Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) - CDU