Dr WR (Bill) Barker

Bill is an Honorary Research Associate of the State Herbarium.

His research interests include systematics, evolution, historical biogeography and biology in: Australasian Scrophulariaceae in traditional sense (now segregated into Scrophulariaceae, Orobanchaceae, Phrymaceae and Linderniaceae), the largely Australian Celastraceae subfam. Stackhousioideae, and the genus Hakea (Proteaceae, with Robyn Barker and Laurie Haegi). Also involved in taxonomic revisions of species complexes in Lawrencia and Lasiopetalum (Malvaceae) and Spyridium (Rhamnaceae with Jürgen Kellermann) and of the family Theaceae in New Guinea (with a review of lowland Eurya remaining as a project to complete his taxonomic coverage of the family. 

In retirement he is catching up on much outstanding research work, currently finalising for publication a revision of the New Zealand annual Euphrasia species and a review of the Stackhousioideae (with an evolutionary overview based on his morphological studies, molecular work undertaken by Dylan Burge and chromosome studies by Michael Kiehn, WU); collaborating with a team led by Jennifier Tate of Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand on the evolution of diverse sexual expressions evident in Australasia in the tribe Malveeae; and revising the taxonomy of Australasian Phrymaceae, which has been given a solid generic framework with a world view of the family.

Former Chief Botanist of the State Herbarium, Bill is interested in electronic delivery of herbarium and systematic data and information. His former involvement was in the management and web delivery to international standards of the State Herbarium's key collections, census and descriptive data. Bill has also been involved in the development of the Australia's Virtual Herbarium through foundation membership of the Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria and IT advisory group HISCOM.

He is the current President of the Australasian Systematic Botany Society and was recently accorded life membership.

Research expertise
Biodiversity discovery
Species and populations
Ecological processes

Phone: (+61 8) 8222 9303