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Melissa Jackson


Melissa is a senior research consultant at the Institute for Sustainable Futures with eight years’ experience as a consultant, policy analyst and project manager, working across strategy development, project implementation, development of responses to future indicators, communication and education programs and reporting in sustainability and energy. Melissa has worked for various clients including corporations, SMEs, community groups, and all levels of government.

Melissa’s passion is to pursue least effort paths to shift consumer culture towards a more sustainable future and she has an interest in exploring the links and leverage points between personal and global sustainability. Melissa is experienced in communication and engagement methods and tools to generate behavioural, organisational and practice change for sustainability outcomes.

Melissa has delivered outcomes across entire project lifecycles – concept, planning, development, implementation, monitoring and evaluation – for projects such as the Federal Government’s National Framework for Energy Efficiency Commercial and Industrial Sector Best Practice Model and web-portal (2008); Hydro Tasmania’s Climate Change Strategy development and program implementation; the Australian Green Infrastructure Council’s Sustainability Rating Scheme development of categories and criteria; the North-East Greenhouse Alliance community engagement and climate change adaptation strategy; and the Future of Transport in Australia 2050 for the National Transport Commission. Melissa managed ISF’s own innovative community engagement program Climate Clubs (2010, 2011), in partnership with Marrickville, Blacktown and Manly Councils, the State Government and community partners. The project was finalist in the Banksia Awards in 2012.

Melissa is currently completing postgraduate studies in Futures Studies, is certified in Greenhouse Gas Accounting with the international Greenhouse Gas Management Institute, and is a Green Star Building Assessor through the Green Building Council of Australia.

Image of Melissa Jackson
Senior Research Consultant, Institute for Sustainable Futures
Associate Member, SIC - Strengthening Indigenous Communities
Environmental Science, Futures Studies
+61 2 9514 9040
+61 2 9514 4941

Journal articles

Jackson, M.L., Lederwasch, A.J. & Giurco, D. 2014, 'Transitions in Theory and Practice: Managing Metals in the Circular Economy', Resources, vol. 3, no. 3, pp. 516-543.
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Transitioning from current resource management practice dominated by linear economic models of consumption and production, to circular models of resource use, will require insights into the stages and processes associated with socio-technical transitions. This paper is concerned with transitions in practice. It explores two frameworks within the transitions literaturethe multi-level perspective and transition management theoryfor practical guidance to inform a deliberate transition in practice. The critical futures literature is proposed as a source of tools and methods to be used in conjunction with the transition frameworks to influence and enable transitions in practice. This enhanced practical guidance for initiating action is applied to a specific contexttransitioning the Australian metals sector towards a circular economy model. This particular transition case study is relevant because the vision of a circular economy model of resource management is gaining traction internationally, Australia is significant globally as a supplier of finite mineral resources and it will also be used in a collaborative research project on Wealth from Waste to investigate possibilities for the circular economy and metals recycling.
Cordell, D.J., Jackson, M.L. & White, S. 2013, 'Phosphorus flows through the Australian food system: Identifying intervention points as a roadmap to phosphorus security', Environmental Science and Policy, vol. 29, no. 9, pp. 87-102.
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Global phosphorus scarcity is likely to threaten the world's ability to produce food in the future if concerted efforts to ensure long-term phosphorus availability and accessibility and to use phosphorus more sustainably in the food system are not taken by policy makers, scientists and industry. Each country is vulnerable to phosphorus scarcity in different ways due to different characteristics of the national food system. However numerous opportunities exist to steer countries on a more sustainable trajectory to buffer food systems against such risks. A country-level phosphorus flow analysis can aid the identification of current inefficiencies, potential points for phosphorus recovery, reduction in losses and facilitate prioritisation of policy measures. This paper presents the findings and implications of a phosphorus flow analysis for Australia. The analysis found that despite being a net food exporter (predominantly to Asia), Australia is a net phosphorus importer (80 kt/a of P) to replenish naturally phosphorus-deficient soils and support a phosphorus-intensive agricultural and livestock export sector. Simultaneously, there is a net phosphorus deficiency from the Australian food system (106 kt/a of P) due to substantial losses and inefficiencies from mine to field to fork. The livestock sector represents over 60% of Australia's phosphorus demand due to fertilised pastures and animal feed. The manure produced by the 211 million head of livestock in Australia alone contains 60 times more phosphorus than the food consumed by the entire Australian population. Key opportunities to increase the resilience of the Australian food system include: increasing manure reuse, phosphorus use efficiency in fertilised pastures, investigate phosphorus recovery from phosphogypsum waste stockpiles and investigating more phosphorus-efficient food and agricultural commoditiesparticularly to reduce exported and wasted phosphorus whilst maintaining or enhancing productivity.


Riedy, C.J., Jackson, M., Berry, F., Harris, B., Matyus Flynn, S., Saintilan, C. & Levine, D. 2015, GreenPower Program Public Consultation Paper.
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Riedy, C.J., Jackson, M., Berry, F., Downes, J., Harris, B., Matyus Flynn, S., Saintilan, C. & Levine, D. Institute for Sustainable Futures, University of Technology Sydney 2015, GreenPower Program Review: Final Report, Sydney.
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Cordell, D.J., Jackson, M.L., Boronyak, L.J., Cooper, C., Mohr, S.H., Moore, D.D. & White, S. Australian Sustainable Phosphorus Futures and Institute for Sustainable Futures 2012, Phase 1: Analysis of phosphorus flows through the Australian food production and consumption system, pp. 1-57, Sydney, Australia.
Riedy, C., Herriman, J., Daly, J.G., Ross, K., Jackson, M.L., Lederwasch, A.J., Boronyak, L.J. & Murta, J. Institute for Sustainable Futures, UTS 2012, Water in North East Victoria: Regional Community Development Climate Adaptation Plan - Final Report, Sydney, Australia.
Riedy, C., Jackson, M.L., Usher, J. & Milne, G.R. Institute for Sustainable Futures, UTS 2011, Australian Green Infrastructure Council Infrastructure sustainability rating tool: Energy and carbon category, Sydney.
Mitchell, C.A., Cordell, D.J., Boyle, T.M. & Jackson, M.L. Institute for Sustainable Futures, UTS 2011, Australian Green Infrastructure Council Infrastructure sustainability rating tool: Water category, Sydney.