Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (Honours)




Associate Professor Nicholas Gill, Dr Jennifer Atchison and Dr Ben Gooden


Biological controls present significant potential to aid and improve the management of invasive species. However, this potential has, in the past, been impeded through responses from members of the community regarding biological control programs and their perceived risks. A two-stage mixed-method research design was used in this thesis to examine the perceptions and experiences of Dandenong Ranges Region community members participating in a biological control project. Anchoring this examination is the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation’s (CSIRO) community participation model. Identification of human perceptions relating to biological control agents and biological control release programs exists in a selection of research. However, there is a lack of knowledge concerning the experiences of community members participating in such programs and how this experience influences perceptions of biological control. In response to the lack of understanding of the role communities play within these programs, this thesis demonstrates a unique approach to address gaps in the literature relating to the broader topic of biological control. This is accomplished through examining how current community participation processes in biological control projects influence and address participants' responses to, and perceptions of, the use of biological control agents in the weed management of wandering trad. Specifically, this will be achieved by: identifying and exploring the views of a range of participants in a biological control project regarding the release of the biological control agent to manage wandering trad; examining participants' views about biological control relative to other control methods; examining the participants' experience of the community participation processes in the wandering trad biological control project; and investigating the extent to which involvement in the biological project has influenced their views on biological control.



Unless otherwise indicated, the views expressed in this thesis are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of the University of Wollongong.