Dr Melanie Finch


James Cook University

Dr Melanie Finch is a geologist who researches how rocks move and deform when tectonic plates collide. Melanie has worked in many spectacular places, including in the Himalaya where huge mountains were made by rocks moving past each other on shear zones, which act like 'rock conveyor belts'. Melanie studies these rock conveyor belts to understand how solid rock can flow like honey over millions of years.

Melanie completed her PhD at Monash University in 2016 and was then awarded an Alexander von Humboldt Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of Tuebingen, Germany. She returned to Australia in 2018 in a teaching-research position at Monash University and then started in her current role as a Lecturer in Geoscience at James Cook University in 2022.

Melanie uses her research to inspire students to study Earth Science through her science communication and public outreach work. She has written articles for The Conversation and appeared live on national and community radio and science podcasts. Melanie is a passionate advocate for women in science and is President of Women in Earth and Environmental Sciences Australasia (WOMEESA).

Dr Melanie Finch is a Superstar of STEM.