Jessica Lethbridge
Information Systems Specialist

Working as a research software engineer in environmental monitoring I developed many skills in software development, embedded systems, GIS and data science. I have also spent many years honing my communication skills for audiences in both industry and academia and I’m a keen public speaker.

My favourite projects are the ones that allow me to explore how data can be used to tell stories. I also enjoy using technology in ways that it wasn’t designed to be used. My project highlights include:

  • Community Based Sensor Network. Created with the CSIRO, this system aimed to motivate behavioural change by providing real-time water meter sensor data to households. The system used Bluetooth enabled water meters to upload real-time usage data using nearby smart phones as web gateways to reduce sensor costs and energy usage.
  • Smart Phone Weather Station. This was my honours project at UTas, also carried out with supervision from the CSIRO. This project aimed to reduce the cost and barrier to entry of high quality weather stations used for flood monitoring in northern Queensland. I created software that allowed a $30 smartphone to work as a datalogger, which usually costs thousands of dollars. This weather station was then also used at a local high school through the Scientists in Schools program for students to monitor the environment in their garden patch.
  • Long Term Effectiveness of Smart Energy Metering for Environmental Sustainability. For my Masters capstone research project I investigated whether the presence of energy data from smart meters created sustained behaviour changes in households in Australia. My investigation found that around half of households made small changes which were sustained but those who had received a mandatory smart meter were often completely unaware of what their smart meter did.

I completed my Bachelor of Computing with Honours at the University of Tasmania and my Master of Sustainable Built Environment at the University of New South Wales.

I work in sustainability because I love technology and I believe that in order to maintain our modern technological advances and to keep them advancing into the future we need to be environmentally sustainable.

As a giant nerd, I spend my spare time reading scifi and fantasy novels, playing computer games, and when I’m feeling a bit more social, playing board games with friends.