Dr David Eldridge awarded 2022 NSW Premier's Prize

Senior Principal Scientist, Dr David Eldridge from the Department of Planning and Environment, has been awarded the 2022 Premier's Prize for Innovation in NSW Public Sector Science and Engineering.

Middle Road red earth textures and bird habitat Sturt National Park in the arid north-west corner of New South Wales

We celebrate this wonderful achievement which recognises David's career-long commitment to delivering outstanding science to support land, soil and vegetation management in New South Wales.

An amazing journey

Dr David Eldridge is a rangeland (arid and semi-arid area) scientist whose career spans over 40 years as a NSW government scientist. David has made significant contributions to the sustainable management of rangelands, their soils and biota in Australia and worldwide.

David says, "It's been an amazing journey, and I've got to do really good science that helps the government to make decisions about how to manage land."

David's work has been instrumental in promoting the importance of biological soil crusts in influencing soil erosion and fertility in these areas, ensuring they are an integral part of national environmental monitoring programs.

Great science to support great decisions

David has a very collaborative approach to his work and approaches his projects and problems in a partnership way. He enjoys and appreciates working with others who have the same vision and are willing to put in the effort.

Senior Team Leader, Dr Greg Summerell, says, "It's people like David who have allowed us to envision and realise the people we need to deliver the best science for NSW government."

David's recent work has focused on improving outcomes on NSW conservation reserves. He pioneered Australian research on rewilding native animals, providing strong ecological support for reintroducing locally extinct mammals. He has also assessed risks from livestock grazing in NSW reserves.

A prolific writer, David has published over 270 papers, editing for several journals. Sharing his expertise through teaching at UNSW Sydney and mentoring of early career scientists is an area of deep passion for David. He has trained NSW government staff, community members and run science writing workshops around the world.

Dr David Eldridge, proud recipient of the 2022 NSW Premier’s Prize
Dr David Eldridge, examines a soil crust